This was my first diorama. Based on one of the sets designed by Richard Tuschman for his ‘Hopper Meditations’ series that in turn were based on paintings by Edward Hopper.
This portrays a run down tenement apartment with cracking paint, warped floorboards, a layer of dirt and grime everywhere with water stains to show an aged place.
In this space I can create a scene of hope or despair equally well because what I want to do with this piece is demonstrate that the human spirit is not necessarily dictated by surroundings or maybe it is – we’ll see..
This piece has detachable walls on all four sides to allow for complete flexibility in framing the shot.
The entire set is hand made with the exception of the doors. It’s built in 1:12 scale making it very easy to plan and furnish.
I used hardboard covered in plaster for the walls, which lead to my resolution to never use hardboard again and only use foam core!
The Apartment set is fun to light, given the window frames and sheer curtains. It’s furnished with props from miniatures.com, a great supplier of dollhouse furniture, lighting and building supplies.
Some Different Arrangements
This is an example of how I can shoot a model in a studio and then composite her into a dramatically lit diorama scene.