Monday, September 3, 2012

The Diorama Experience


Okay. So, I believe most of us has happened to create our own dioramas be it a simple school-project, an architecture's layout structure or simply a modeler's custom-made action bases.

and for those who did not encounter creating their first dioramas it's either:
1. You're not an architect
2. You're too lazy to create and submit a crazy school diorama project.
3. You did not have the guts or the "artistic-ness" to create your own.
4. You simply did not have the resources and money even after hammering the piggy bank to pieces.

Okay, so for the sake of those that doesn't have the knowledge for this sort of so-called hobby or project but want to make it their hobbies or to create their own projects

just read the freaking description below!!!

The word diorama [ˌdaɪəˈrɑːmə] can either refer to a nineteenth-century mobile theatre device, or, in modern usage, a three-dimensional full-size or miniature model, sometimes enclosed in a glass showcase for a museum. Dioramas are often built by hobbyists as part of related hobbies such as military vehicle modeling, miniature figure modeling, or aircraft modeling.

The word "diorama" originated in 1823 as a type of picture-viewing device, from the French in 1822. The word literally means "through that which is seen", from the Greek di- "through" + orama "that which is seen, a sight." The diorama was invented by Louis-Jacques-Mandé Daguerre and Charles Marie Bouton, first exhibited in London September 29, 1823. The meaning "small-scale replica of a scene, etc" is from 1902.

The current, popular understanding of the term "diorama" denotes a partially three-dimensional, full-size replica or scale model of a landscape typically showing historical events, nature scenes or cityscapes, for purposes of education or entertainment.

First use of dioramas in a museum is in Romania by professor Grigore Antipa in 1907.

(I'm giving out credits to Wikipedia - where everyone copies their school assignments. Haha! Peace out Wiki!!!)

Well, That's so much for history, who-discovered-what, and everything you must know about how dioramas came to life.

Now, for those people who did not read and just wanted to see some photos to get a little bit of a push to get started. Here's what a diorama looks like:

I bet after seeing the pics I've shown above, an average person would have a thought like - "I wish I could create something like this!", or "I wish I could blow and rip the whole thing apart!!!"

If so then, Dioramas are your way to go;

But assuming you just:

1. Wanted to finish your school project.

2. Thinks it's cool to replicate a scenery of your own town and city

3. Wanted to replicate a scenery of your own town and city and WANTED TO SEE IT DESTROYED LIKE IT WENT THROUGH A MAJOR HOLOCAUST, WORLD WAR, DISASTER, PLAGUE, ALIENATED, AND ANY BADASS THING THAT YOU CAN THINK OF but doesn't have the weapons, ammunitions, bombs or GUTS to scare people of getting them out of their own homes. 

Then, I believe it is still dioramas that you will crave to make.

I give full credits to those people who made the dioramas. I do not own your photos, newbie diorama-makers like me respects you (except maybe to those who made the a diorama with the octopus and the one with the yacht which I wanted to ask if he used a lego for the human surfer and if the sun there is a halved orange fruit. Just Kidding! Credits and respects to all of you.)

Now, as for my experience, before I've started out to create my own dioramas, I've checked quite a lot of websites, blogsites and youtube videos learning some tips and tricks, do's and don'ts and what materials to use for this hobby. 

Maybe advanced modelers and hobbyists use premium materials you can buy at art shops and hobby shops like high impact polysterene sheets, premium paints like Mr. Hobby, Tamiya Spray paints, Vallejo Paint, weathering stuffs, and whatever. 

There are also people who simply just buys a whole diorama kit.

Sounds easier. But it also costs a hell lot and you can't customize the whole kit. 
(Well, you can customize some parts of a built-in kit like add trees and etc., but I'm sure that it's going to take a whole lot of effort and it's a painstaking task to fully customize landscaping rather than build one)

So for those who wanted to start out with diorama making. Here's more or less a list of what you may need and alternatives:

Styrofoam - As base or for custom pieces or parts. Or for constructing sofas and beds.

An alternative can be a piece of plywood, box or any scrap material that can be used as surface base for the diorama.

Tissue Paper - This is what we will use to cover the base pieces. Can also be used for detailing, covering and customizing some pieces or parts. Best to use the thinnest/softest tissue paper you can have. 

Alternatives: Newspaper clippings or scrap papers you don't use at home.

Cutter - Hack and slash. Used to cut out some parts. Can also be used to cut off your own wrists and drain your own blood or simply cut off your neighbor's tongue when they're yelling at you for something.

Alternatives: A simple knife would do. A hobby knife if you have one.


Glue - Any type of glue will do. As for myself, I use HBW glue, it's a local brand, cheap and works for me. But if there's nothing like that on your place then you can still use Elmer's glue or any other cheaper brands as long as it sticks.

BBQ Sticks and Toothpicks - To keep some parts in place before covering or painting.

You can also use this to skewer your own eyeball or your bestfriend's eyeball, grill them and serve them hot on a platter.

I use Superior Ruby Toothpicks, it costs less (don't worry about the "superior" part it's just for marketing and they're not that superior at all) and a whole box contains twice the amount of a your regular toothpick brand.

Sand - For terrain and landscape. Other modelers use plaster of paris  or white cement. You can also use those stuff depending on the type of finish you'd want your diorama to have. If you want a rocky land terrain or mountains then use sand. But if you're constructing a miniature castle or road then use plaster of paris or white cement for a smoother finish.

Paint - Yes. We will have to paint the dio. Personally, I'd recommend what I use all this time. Spray paint cans. Just use any industrial paint that you can afford. I wouldn't really recommend gunpla paints or tamiya spray paint cans as they contain lesser paint content compared to industrial paints such as Bosny or Rj. I think gunpla paints, mr. hobby or tamiya have half the content of Bosny and twice the price. Since this site is for people who wanted to spend less for such an expensive hobby. I will use industrial paint throughout the course of my blog. Now, if you can afford the extremes, then go for it. I hope this guide will help you as well.

Brush - For painting little details. Also used to paint at somebody else's face when they're drunk.

I personally use 3 types of paint brush - the round, flat and rigger. (That's 1,2 and last starting from the left). But if you do not have any of those I'd recommend the finest paintbrush tip that you have. I've never tried trimming the hairs of a brush before to make it finer but if you can tell me that's possible then keep me noted.

Okay, so I guess we have just summed up what are the common materials and alternatives that can be used. For extra materials I will post everything that I use and the possible alternatives for that.

Till my next post!!!

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