Sunday, September 10, 2006

Balls to the Walls

I find that some things take balls while others take finesse. Today was a balls day.

I had to take a stab at some measurements of the beam positions and then dismantle them. Then I could start to remove the main set cottage walls in sections and mark their position on the set. I removed them all and began to cut insulation foam to fit each panel. I then pasted cut pieces of foam to both sides of the original cardboard walls, like a different sammich and wrap it in fiberglass screen ($6/roll). The idea being the soft flexible window screening mesh would give firm traction as an underment to the plaster daub coating. I have a wall pressed between boards under heavy weight overnight to dry before I test plaster it tomorrow.

Lots of detailed tasks take finesse, sculpting, meticulous styling of clothing and other tiny props, etc. or even the artistry of editing a final scene requires a skillful flair. But the moves I made today took a bold heart and called for a kind of backbone that I usually shy away from.

And as a fun bonus, inspired by the fabulous workshop tips from master miniature builder, Rik Pierce. I cut a hole in the bottom of the tree stove fire place, clipped a 7 watt flame-colored bulb into an empty glass spice jar, ran the cord down through the tree to the outside landscape, and did a quick dressing to check the effect. That's going to look just like I wanted by the time I'm through.

I also managed to create a custom Tudor-style leading for the next two arch-shaped windows for the cottage. I quite like it and look forward to getting more of the lead out.


  1. Fireplace lighting looks fantabuloso, nice pattern on the new window too!

  2. Thank you, Jefferymeister! I really like the fire effect too, and never would have thought of wiring the light for it now, except for my reading tips from people who build these things for a living! By wiring the lighting now I won't have to cut into the finished set. Did you see that mini tut on that yet? It looked more like a campfire there because they used railroad-er grey ballast for ashes and painted the logs black. I can create a pdf of the page for you and send it, if you'd like.

    Thanks for the comment on the window pattern, I like it too. Fun fun.

  3. I did see the tut, thanks...the black logs gave me an idea for a 'burning' effect I want to try out with the new beats paper...

  4. Water puts out fire... hey, AND it destroys paper! I want to be water!

    ...But one problem. How do U animate water?

    Heh... sorry. Bad flashback... happens sometimes.

    Hey, if you gots balls AND finesse, you can juggle!

  5. Great, J, I'm glad that helped spark ya.

    And Mike, you are hilarious.


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