An Art Deco diorama begins ...

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Ozmac
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An Art Deco diorama begins ...

Post by Ozmac » Mon Oct 24, 2016 3:58 am

Well folks, I'm breaking a few rules again, as my next diorama is brought to you by 1/72 scale modelling, not 1/43, but instead of posting this in some other part of the S143.com forum, I figure it's mostly a diorama thread, and the scale of the vehicles isn't the main game. Besides, the models I am building aren't available in 1/43 scale, and I wish they were. On with the introductory show ...

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The first component of the diorama is nine-tenths built. Having seen how rough the paint job looks in close-ups photos, there's a lot of touching up to do. This is an Opel Blitzbus, the Strassenzepp Essen, or road Zeppelin. This actual bus was built in the 1930s, and was used notably to ferry around competitors at the 1936 Berlin Olympics, as a showcase of the modernity of those Neanderthal Nazis.

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The plastic kit itself is by a Ukrainian company, Roden, and it's moderately OK (main components fitted together) and moderately crappy (dreadful decals), too. But it's the only Art Deco bus kit I can find. Love those fins! The people in the bus aren't part of the kit. I added some 1/72 Airfix plastic soldiers as "passengers" in my Blitzbus.

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To give you an idea of its size, the bus is about as big as a 1/43 car, maybe a bit smaller.

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Also in the diorama will be a 1/72 scale Tatra. This is another plastic kit, and today I just cut the main body bits off the sprues just to show how "fins" is going to be a major theme here.

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And this is actually an Art Deco theatre that's in Tasmania. I am planning to build this in 3D using foam board, so this photo is simply my reference guide. I figure that for a beginner, three holes and lots of straight lines should be all I should attempt ...

The next step, of course, is to tidy up the bus, build the Tatra and paint it silver ... after that I'll have to figure out how to build my first 3D building using foam board, and for that I plan to check out a lot of You Tube videos where other modellers show how it's done. As usual, wish me luck ...

johann.nunweiller
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Re: An Art Deco diorama begins ...

Post by johann.nunweiller » Mon Oct 24, 2016 4:10 am

I follow you with pleasure and interest!

Bucharest has many art deco buildings and monuments.

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David MG
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Re: An Art Deco diorama begins ...

Post by David MG » Mon Oct 24, 2016 4:31 am

Hi Jamie,
Thierry53 used to be member of S143 who was brilliant at building dios with foam board.
Unfortunately, he has deleted all posts. Some of which contained tutorials.
Here is a contact link, he may show his construction methods in the posts.

http://dioramas.eklablog.com/dioramas-c25852932
Cheers,
David

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Tom
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Re: An Art Deco diorama begins ...

Post by Tom » Mon Oct 24, 2016 6:38 am

Great idea, will be following this.

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Ozmac
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Re: An Art Deco diorama begins ...

Post by Ozmac » Mon Oct 24, 2016 7:03 am

David said
Thierry53 used to be member of S143 who was brilliant at building dios with foam board.
David, I visit Thierry's website regularly. He's a master of the art, someone I hope to be one tenth as good after ten years' practice.

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Re: An Art Deco diorama begins ...

Post by ghosthunter » Mon Oct 24, 2016 12:11 pm

Choosing an unusual subject for your diorama makes it even more interesting and exciting so good luck with the build. We all know you can do it, so now just tell yourself you can do it... :D

Ghosthunter.

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IFHP
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Re: An Art Deco diorama begins ...

Post by IFHP » Sat Oct 29, 2016 3:12 am

Great concept. I look forward to your progress.
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Re: An Art Deco diorama begins ...

Post by LM24HRS » Sun Oct 30, 2016 4:38 am

I will certainly be following this with interest as I feel I could well learn something here. Really like the idea.
Paul - "Collecting Motorsport in Miniature; for the passion and its history".

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Ozmac
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Re: An Art Deco diorama begins ...

Post by Ozmac » Thu Nov 10, 2016 6:21 pm

A bit more progress to report ...

The little 1/72 scale Tatra T87 is built, from a plastic kit made by Attack Models.

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Attack is a Czech company, but for my money I group them with the Ukrainian and Russian companies for quality of everything from castings to decals. The good thing about these people is that they make models of cars, planes etc that suit my quirky tastes.

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The model kit was for a WWII military model, but it was close enough for me to make it into a nice, silver, civilian one.

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The bus was first produced in 1936, and the Tatra T-87 first appeared in 1936, so both are nice and new and shiny, and check those fins!

Now, if you've read the first section of this thread, you'll know that I am using an Art Deco movie theatre as the basis for my Art Deco building. For a while I've been mulling over what type of building my diorama building would be, and the idea of keeping it as a movie theatre — in German a "Kino" — solved my main problem with the building itself. I don't like those windows at street level all that much, and so if I make the building a Kino I can then line the sides with nice movie posters, some of course in classic Art Deco style.

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And so here's a selection of movie posters from the era. Most are of movies that were showing in Germany in 1936, but of course Fritz Lang's "Metropolis" which debuted in 1927, is out of date, but I guess you'll just have to accept that this is an early art house theatre and they are re-screening Metropolis for the fans. I love the poster for "Berlin Alexanderplatz" (which actually came out in 1933). Such a modern image. At first I thought it was a 1960s' poster, but no, it was designed in '33.

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My final problems (for the moment) were easily solved. First of all — what name for the Kino? I decided to award that honour to the designer of the Tatra, Hans Ledwinka, and so we have the "Ledwinka Kino". The second problem was even easier to solve: a suitable Art Deco font for the signage. The top font here is the classic "Anna" font, but the one I am going to use is the one below, also an Art Deco classic, and with the very winning name of "Busorama".

I've been on a small shopping spree and now have all the foam board and thin cardboard that I need for the building, and I've selected various little 1/72 scale plastic figures to enhance the street scene. I've even found one of a soldier on a bicycle, so when I make some more progress I'll report in again.

PS: great little piece of trivia for the motoring history buffs that I picked up yesterday, during my researches. Tatra designer Hans Ledwinka's son, Erich Ledwinka, followed in his father's footsteps and became a car designer. Probably his most well-known design, also seen as revolutionary for its time, was the Haflinger off-road vehicle.

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Jean B.
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Re: An Art Deco diorama begins ...

Post by Jean B. » Mon Nov 14, 2016 11:54 am

Fantastic project! And what a coincidence: last week I've bought square metres of foam board for 1.) building a simple plain photo box, but 2.) equipping it step by step to an Art Déco showroom, that means contrary to your project the interior of a hall showing (preferrably) streamlined cars. I'm really thrilled what you are going to build, and - being a Berliner! - I love your German movie posters and the bus :P Get ahead ;)

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Tom
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Re: An Art Deco diorama begins ...

Post by Tom » Mon Nov 14, 2016 2:01 pm

Excellent. I'm an art deco fan, so I love all this.

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LM24HRS
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Re: An Art Deco diorama begins ...

Post by LM24HRS » Thu Nov 17, 2016 5:03 pm

Very intrigued to see this project develop I must say. Those art deco movie posters are just the job.
Paul - "Collecting Motorsport in Miniature; for the passion and its history".

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Re: An Art Deco diorama begins ...

Post by Featherless_Biped » Thu Nov 17, 2016 5:34 pm

Another creative endeavor. :!: Looking forward to the denouement. :)

RT

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Ozmac
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Re: An Art Deco diorama begins ...

Post by Ozmac » Sun Nov 27, 2016 1:05 am

Of late I have been strangely busy with work, so I haven't had those nice big blocks of time I need to start working on the buildings. However, I've been setting aside half an hour or so each day to slowly paint a gaggle of 1/72 scale theatre-goers, and they've turned out to be quite a large cast of extras, a very suitable thing for a picture theatre diorama. Not sure if I'll use them all, but at least I have no shortage of options. Many of them will form the queue to buy tickets at the box office, of course.

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Most of the little figures are cheap Chinese figures originally painted very roughly in gawdy colours. A small smattering are 1/72 Airfix military figures (I chose those without guns, of course). I spray painted everything in grey primer, then worked away with a limited palette of relatively dull greens, greys, browns, tans and blues, with the odd flashy person in red or yellow.

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It's very relaxing painting little 1/72 scale people, especially civilians, because you then don't have to stick to any "correct" military colour scheme (all of which are deadly dull, anyway). Over time I developed a few favourites, including Cycle Guy, Sassy Gal in red, the two burly nurse-ladies, and the little couples.

Hopefully all this annoying money-earning work will disappear as Christmas approaches, and I can get onto the serious business of building Art Deco picture theatres.

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Re: An Art Deco diorama begins ...

Post by Tom » Sun Nov 27, 2016 7:31 am

I love this detail work. This will really make the end result come to life.

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Re: An Art Deco diorama begins ...

Post by Featherless_Biped » Sun Nov 27, 2016 7:53 am

Those guys will be a hit at the box office. :)

RT

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Jager
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Re: An Art Deco diorama begins ...

Post by Jager » Mon Nov 28, 2016 5:13 am

Who could resist the charm of those pre-war, Eastern bloc nurses :D .
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Re: An Art Deco diorama begins ...

Post by GBOAC002 » Mon Nov 28, 2016 6:06 am

In our town we had the Odeon Cinema built in Deco style during the 1930s. One of my neighbours was a boy and remembers when it was opened to great fanfare.
I last went there in 1972/3 to see the latest, at that time, Bond Movie. In the interim years it has been a night club under various names. Much aggro on a Saturday night led to the closure a few years back. All that remains of that building now is the facade which was to form the front of a block of apartments. Developers recently went bust and now the whole site is awaiting yet another new development plan. The facade will allegedly be demolished as it is an 'unsafe structure'. With it's vertical curved corners I suspect it is capable of standing several more years. More likely it's too ornate to fit neatly into generally square box structures of modern day flats...

Somewhere I have a picture of the place prior to demolition.

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Ozmac
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Re: An Art Deco diorama begins ...

Post by Ozmac » Sun Mar 05, 2017 7:40 pm

Well, what has proven to be our hottest summer since the first boatload of convicts arrived here is coming to an end. My little garden shed, where I do my model-making and diorama building, has a tin roof and in summer it's worse than an oven in there. We had lots of days in the high 30s and low 40s, and so I gave model-making a miss, but now it's cooling down, I'm back in action and here's a little update on how the Art Deco diorama is going.

I've used my Photoshop and Indesign software to come up with a very simple mockup of the size and shape of the Art Deco movie theatre. My first draft more accurately followed the dimensions of the reference photo, but I thought it was just too tall for a diorama. Everyone would look at the big building and not notice the little bus and car, so I have taken the liberty of shrinking the building height by about 10%.

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I printed out the mockup on an A4 sheet of paper, stuck it on some cardboard, added the car and bus and a few people, and I think I have a starting point for making the building from foam board. (And I have bought a nifty little circle cutter, so I can add the curved tops to the highest parts of the building. Didn't bother with creating them here in Indesign).

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I want to have a queue of people outside the ticket window. At the moment the ticket window is too far on the right, so I might move it to another spot, so I can have a longer queue. And I just had to add some movie posters to the wall. I'm yet to decide on where to add the cinema's name, but it'll probably be under the three circular windows.

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And I have plenty of other extras to use in my street scene.

The next thing I have to research is how to create a lightly textured paint for the building's walls, so it looks like a cement render. I think 1/72 scale cement render is going to end up being a mix of talcum powder with paint and applying it with a roller, but we'll see ...

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Re: An Art Deco diorama begins ...

Post by johann.nunweiller » Mon Mar 06, 2017 2:34 am

Beautiful!

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Tom
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Re: An Art Deco diorama begins ...

Post by Tom » Mon Mar 06, 2017 3:32 pm

Very creative. I would probably have done the same with the scale and position of the ticket window.
Your rendering solution sounds good.

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Re: An Art Deco diorama begins ...

Post by LUW » Mon Mar 06, 2017 8:58 pm

I'm really curious to see how this turns out, and I love these in-progress reports!
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Re: An Art Deco diorama begins ...

Post by Jager » Tue Mar 07, 2017 10:04 am

Ozmac wrote:The next thing I have to research is how to create a lightly textured paint for the building's walls, so it looks like a cement render. I think 1/72 scale cement render is going to end up being a mix of talcum powder with paint and applying it with a roller, but we'll see ...
Jamie, I've often used Dulux 'Suede Effects' paint in a light grey to simulate concrete (and which can easily be tinted darker or lighter with the addition of regular white or black paint).

http://www.dulux.com.au/products/dulux- ... oduct=2238

You'll find Bunnings sell small 250ml 'sample pots' for less than $10 which also make it quite affordable.
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Ozmac
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Re: An Art Deco diorama begins ...

Post by Ozmac » Tue Mar 07, 2017 12:44 pm

Thanks for that, Ian. The Suede Effects sounds like a good idea.

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