"How to Build Large Scale Dioramas"

Discussion in 'Dioramas & Displays' started by JohnReid, Jul 7, 2007.

  1. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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    Fuselage/tail assembly.
    I modified the jig by cutting off the bottom portion but still leaving the upper for protection for the wings.I then hot glue melted the wheels to a building board.(the glue is easily removed later by re-heating it).
    The building board is exactly the width of the tail booms.I could have made a separate jig for the tail assembly but I thought that it would be more fun to build it like the original must have been done.
    I know Curtiss used bamboo but others also used ash wood for these booms and spruce for the struts.I will use ash(basswood) for these due to the difficult of representing the growth rings on the bamboo which would hardly be seen at scale distance anyway.
    The measurements I used for the tail assembly are from the Aeronautics publication May-June 1912,page 161.
  2. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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  3. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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    I heard from the CAM yesterday and their renovations are to be finished in about a year from now. I probably have another year or so just to finish the Backyard Flyer so I will drop it for now and complete the Albatros,Neiuport and Jenny dioramas first.
    The Neiuport is about 99% finished ,the Jenny about 90% and Albatros about the same except I have recently (today) added more to it.
    A modeling bud of mine kindly gave me another Albatros that he was working on himself but has too many things on the go right now.I got it as a surprise Chistmas present and as you will see I am putting it to good use.
  4. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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  5. cmdr199212

    cmdr199212 Member

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  6. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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    Now this should be lots of fun! I always wanted to do a junkyard.The question is though ,because it is a military airfield ,I don't think that junk would be allowed to lay around too long and that limits the amount of weathering I can do.Worn but not too rusty.No evidence of fire this time but an accident case just like the other.
    This is a German aircrew training field and accidents were all too common in those days.I am dedicating this diorama to all the pilots and their instructors who never even made it to the front lines ,both German and Allied.
  7. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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    I visited a couple of local hobby stores yesterday and to my surprise I saw something amazing.Ten years ago, except for the amour guys ,hardly anyone knew about dioramas or even what they were.Not only most modelers but the arts community too!
    Things are finally changing,they now have craft materials for kids, even under ten years old' labeled as "diorama kits".I am not just talking about the modeling section of the stores but in the childrens craft section as well.Sure,I know that this kind of craft thing has been around for a long time but I never have seen a kit designed especially for kids and labeled a diorama.
    So what is the big deal?Well maybe sometime in the future makers of dioramas will not have to explain to 9 out of 10 people that they meet what kind of art they do.
  8. cmdr199212

    cmdr199212 Member

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    I know!!! some of them look really cool! But, they are kinda pricy:curse:
  9. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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    The Model Elephant In The Room
    When visiting my local hobby store the other day,I overheard a conversation that seems to be all too familiar these days.A local RR modeler had recently passed away and word finally reached the store about two weeks later.He was a regular visitor and buyer who had spent a good portion of his lifetime building a model RR layout.The store owner called the widow to express his condolences and mentioned to her something about helping her find a good home for his labor of love.She informed him that she had already thrown a lot of his stuff in the garbage and the rest her brother would sell on e-bay.
    I hear about things like this all too often.For those who aren't familiar with the modern RR layouts,I can only describe the best of them as 3D works of art.Moving trains in a static setting never much appealed to me personally but when looked at as dioramas ,they are some of the best work I have seen.A lot of these RR types developed their artistic skills over time working on their huge layouts over many years.Their initial interest may have been in the moving train, which was the hook for their interest, but many of these guys became diorama artists in their own right.To see a lot of this stuff go in the garbage has always saddened me.
    I wonder if some more thought was given to smaller layouts made in sections and not huge layouts that are difficult move and store, would it make better sense ? I don't know what kind of relationship the modeler in question had with his wife,maybe she considered it junk,I don't know but I am sure that there are families out there that would love to be able to keep some of uncle Joe's or grandpa Fred's stuff for future generations to admire.Whether we realize it or not we are living,in what I believe, is the golden age of modeling ,as we know it.Modelers should think about this because someday this stuff will be rare.If just a little thought were given to this during the construction of layouts then areas of the layout could be made into dioramas.I know a lot of you guys will say "who cares, I'll be dead" but a lot of craftsmen /artists I know, do care whether secretly or not.
    You could plan for this by making your favorite areas of the layout into little dioramas of their own but with only a temporary role in the bigger layout.
    You could have nice display cases made for your best work to be put into upon your move to a smaller home or after your departure for the "happy hunting ground." You could even take the route I did and approach museums with a gift of your work ,so that kids and the young at heart can enjoy it for many years to come.Cheers! John.
  10. Elliott

    Elliott Senior Member

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    What a great post and excellent suggestion John! It would be wonderful if modelers would take this to heart and actually do it. I've read (and seen pictures) of model scenes being cut out and integrated into another layout but it seems to be done all too seldom. I'm glad to see that you have made arrangements for your work to be preserved. Thank you.
  11. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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  12. astromech1138

    astromech1138 New Member

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    I always wanted to buy 2 Revell 1:72 Uboat kits and make a docking port like you see in the film "Das Boot"
  13. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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  14. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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    I think that this will be the basic composition that I will go with.The tipped wheelbarrow adds to the storyline by confirming that the junk pile is there only temporarily.It will now have to be glued and pinned down piece by piece.
    A little more subtle weathering is now required.
  15. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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    Dioramas as a one frame movie!
    "What we wanted to do at the beginning of all this,was to show what happens when you take human beings and put them through hell,then wonder how in the world they will approach life when they come home".

    Steven Spielberg on his new piece The Pacific.

    I was reading this in my newspaper this morning and it struck me how similar his idea for making a 10- part mini series on the war in the Pacific, and my idea for my latest diorama "Loss Of Innocence,Will it Ever Be The Same" are alike.(We must be reading each others mail.)
    This is exactly what I have been writing about recently on the power of the storyboard diorama as a one frame movie.
    A movie tells a story in all its thrilling detail and action,on a big screen with music,dialogue etc... a diorama does the same but with one frame.That is the magic and the challenge of the storyboard diorama reducing it all to one frame and still tell a powerful story.Sometimes the story is even more powerful in diorama form because it is left up to the viewer to connect the dots in his mind.A movie lays it all out for you ,a diorama requires a little more imagination on your viewers part.
    This is why I believe storyboard dioramas are as much an "Art "as any of the other visual media.
  16. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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    Due to the volume of work that I have at present ,I haven't been able to keep up to date all of the websites that I have opened.You can however find all my postings over on the first site I joined up at http://www.theaerodrome.com once on the site click "Forum" at the bottom of the pic,then click on "Models" under forum navigation,look for "How to........." at the top of the page.
    Because of the number of sites that I post to I had to pick one to post everything to and I thought that the first one I started would be the most logical.I will still be posting to this thread but not quite as often as I did,hopefully things will calm down a bit in the near future.Some day I plan to condense everything down into a more readable version and post it on all the sites.I hope you guys understand. Cheers ! John.
    You may also want to take a look at a new thread I started over there called Shadow Box Dioramas.