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Posted by JohnL, on 2001-04-17 06:55:04

Train sets

[font size="1" color="#FF0000"]LAST EDITED ON Apr-17-01 AT 05:02 AM (PST)[/font][p]When I was about 10, I was right into train sets. And I think there's a lot to be learned from them. Hobby stores are full of great train set accessories, that would be ideal for stop motion sets. Often you'll find the trees are too small to do anything with, but there easy to copy. The trees are often a main base of plastic. So improvise with some Hardening clay or something. Then for branches stick a whole bunch of wires through it, and just paint these with latex.. You can make really detailed ones quite easily, with twigs and shit coming of them. Then comes the leaves. One way is to get some foam from an old matress, and shave it up with a file or somthing. You the die this the color you want and glue it together and then glue to your branches. Leaves and grass on a set can be made really well with saw dust and food die. You just get some saw dust ( fine as you need), and then rub the die into it, and it absorbs real easy. I always used my hands, but I was little, so I didn't mind having green hands. I used to use lots of different colours, and then mix them together once they were dry. Sticking some yellow in with green grass is really effective. So with leaves reds and browns and shit are good depending on the tree. With the grass you just lay it on the set, and perhaps onto glue to stop it from moving. For leaves just glue it into clumps then straight onto you branches. Easy. (Its been a while so it will help to look at the trees in a hobby store and see if this is a good method.) note.. You can by this grass in bags, but the saw dust works just as well. Also a good way of getting the texture of cliffs, or even the bark on trees, is to get some aluminium foil. You make your wall from plaster (or clay if you like) and then push the foil onto it and squish it around a bit. When you pull it off (while still wet) you get a surprisingly real look. These stores are full of great little props too. There probably a bit small, but it depends on what your doing. There are some real fanatics out there, so you be amazed at the stuff you can find. There should be catalogues of crap to. While Im at it I should mention my way of making things look wet, or plasticy. Just smear araldite over it. This could make great puddles (and Ill be trying that soon). I used this little trick when I made an animatronic puppet about 2 years ago. For the eye I couldn't find anything suitable. So I made it from wood, painted it, and then on with the araldite. It looked great, like Id made it custom from clear plastic. If you werent aware of some of these methods and you try them, tell me how it turned out. I'll put up some more as I think of them.

Posted by e_rex, on 2001-04-17 23:24:33

JL, An excellent point. Tho I don't animate anymore I do use a lot of railroad stuff for doing dioramas. And the various scales allow some great forced perspective stuff. John.