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Storm The Castle Diorama Part 1

In this part we look at how to start with a big project like this - from the very beginning. I show you a few things and I also have a video at the bottom of this page.


Beginning - I guess you could say that the absolute beginning is the idea. I had this idea in my head that I wanted to make a really big diorama of a castle siege scene. From there the work could begin.

The able top

The first thing to actually do is decide on the exact size of the diorama and build the supporting work.

I built a table out of plywood and 2x4's. It is seven feet long and four feet wide. And it is at waist height so it iis comfortable to work on. And, I added wheels to the bottom of it so I could roll the table around while I was working on it.

Because it is such a big project I have devoted a whole spare bedroom to it.

Next I started doing drawings of the project and how I thought it might be laid out. I did a whole lot of drawings. This has to go from nothing to a pretty solid idea of how it will be all laid out including all the major buildings and walls.

There are two parts to the paper design stage. I did some drawings of how I wanted it to all look. And I also did bluprints of the layout of the diorama.

It is important to do a lot of work in the paper stage of the project. The more work you do the easier the whole project will be.

Mockup of the castle

Next is the initial building of the diorama, particularly the castles and buildings section. I used scrap pieces of foam and cardboard tubes to start working the design. These are all just test pieces. They will all be replaced.


Layign out castle parts

These are all just temporary pieces. It is important to do this so I can get the feel and look of the whole thing. At this stage I spent a lot of time moving pieces around, cutting new pieces and trying a lot of ideas. I cut lots of blocks of foam.


Overhead view

Here is an overhead view of the castle section of the diorama. It gives you a good idea of what is starting to happen.

Part of the thing about this diorama is that I wanted it to have some authenticity. And an aspect of that is the concept of concentric circles. They built castles with concentric rings of walls. This made them more easily defendable. You can see that concept starting to develop here.


Foam for the terrain

Another important aspect of this diorama is the ground. I have talked a lot about the actual castle but the ground is just as important.

The table surface is covered with a three inch thick layer of foam. This will allow me to carve and shape it. It can be rolling hills and various other textures.


How the moat will go

This picture gives you a good look at why this buildup is important.The violet lines show you how I can carve that foam down to make the moat.


Ok, You can watch the video on this. That is right below here.

You can also continue on to Part 2 of this project.




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