Please have a look at my latest project and let me know what you think.
As with my last effort, I’m still in North Africa.
This entire diorama was inspired by the many propaganda photos of the Afrika Korps arriving in Tripoli. And a particular one of an 88mm Flak being offloaded.
And then, of course I had to include Rommel, producing what I titled “The Predators” or “The two deadliest predators in North Africa – Rommel and the 88mm Flak”
As always, I work hard to ensure my dioramas tell a story. And keep them to my 30cm size limit.
In this scene, we see Rommel, in his famous pose (why not?) visiting the docks to watch some new equipment being unloaded. The 88 has received a quick coat of paint, before leaving Italy, to make it more suitable for employment in the desert.
The gun is the old Tamiya 88. The Rommel figure is the old Warriors one, (I’m afraid that mold is a little worse for wear.) The other figures are plastic from MiniArt and Dragon, with Hornet heads. (I particularly like the staff officer (from the Dragon, ‘Rommel and his Staff’ kit).
The ship-side is scratch built as is the lifting framework, and the ‘wheel forks’ (at least that’s what I call them.) I added the porthole (perhaps, over-sized) to visually confirm that it is a ship’s side. Behind the plastic is a firm sheet of plywood, needed to support the gun (see more on that, below).
The crates, confirming a dockside setting, are from Steve at Value Gear. *Big tip: Always make sure to place stencils on all military crates and boxes. You can see what an excellent addition they make in this situation.
Staging – designing the layout of a diorama, is always a challenge. Here, the gun is the centerpiece. But I didn’t want it to be square to the viewer, or the background (the ship), hence the slight angle, and the worker pulling on it. I also wanted to show Rommel, but to fit the scene, I could only get his profile. No sense only showing his back as he stares at the gun. But he needed to be observing the unloading…
I added the Kubel (Tamiya’s), as an afterthought, to fill space – there was just too much emptiness in the front center. I think it helps…
Designing the gun, so it looks like it’s hanging in space from the ship’s crane was a challenge.
It is held, floating in place by several lengths of piano wire, protruding from the ship’s side, and pretty well hidden by the gun itself. That wire is very strong and stiff. I use thinner lengths for my radio antennas (I got sick of stretched sprue being broken by me, or by viewers.)
This was a challenging diorama – building the ship-side and supporting the gun in mid-air were unique aspects. And a lot of fun!
Please, provide feedback, positive or negative. Also, if I’m wasting bytes, or preaching to the choir, here, please let me know, and I’ll back off…