I spent this weekend at Wellington’s MakerSpace learning about miniatures, from two properly experienced film artists, fresh from several years of making conceptual sets for the Hobbit. Proper fancy model making.
My own experience of this sort of thing is pretty much limited to a single foamboard Tardis made for a stage show. But maybe there’ll be a need for a tiny movie set in my creative future . . .
Working in a cheap and easily available material, cardboard (pasteboard specifically), we made our own teeny tiny props – starting with a simple chair. I say simple . . . but it took all day working with a scalpel (and several sticking plasters on various thumbs), along with much glue to create the rough shape. The chairs were to a 1:6 scale, conveniently sized for Action Man and his brethren.
The second day we strove to create convincingly wooden paint jobs. Some people careful sanded and smoothed their chairs. I went more the other way, distressing and adding cracks and damage. Indeed, mine was the only one that ended up with tiny bloody handprints and suspicious splatters . . . a tribute to one of my hero artists, Frances Glessner Lee. I can see how people become fascinated and obsessed with creating cut-down versions of real world and fantasy-world objects.