Friday, February 25, 2011

Making Molds!

Here I am prepping and pouring molds of some of the hardware and appliances in the houses. I'm then going to make casts out of plastic.


Here are some new pictures of the progress of the apartments... Sorry it's taken so long to get up, there are obviously some crucial pieces missing, but there is a lot more to show now.

Monday, February 21, 2011


Also, here are some finished photographs of the truck - compliments to Mike again.

An Update from Mexico!

My cousin Mike Laura and I finally got our schedules lined up to shoot Mexico. He's got some really cool footage and some even cooler stills. He brought over a couple strobes and proved just how much they can change a picture. Here's some of the pictures he shot:

Friday, February 11, 2011

Video Update

This is what I've been up to - hanging out in the cave.

Let There be Light!!

So we were curious as to how the lights would look in the rooms, since a few of them will be on. I need to iron out exactly the rest of the back story so that I can really figure out how I want the lights and whatnot, but I do think I'm going to stray away from the blood and guts in fear of looking too much like CSI's miniature killer.
The light we used was a small LED flashlight that we quickly learned was nowhere near the type of lighting we actually need. The lights are outstandingly bright and have way too strong of a cone shaped light. Everything is just so harsh. We talked to the good people over at Bull Street Station, the miniature train store, and they explained to us we were looking at getting LED bulbs that are the size of a grain of wheat or rice. Those are crazy small little bulbs. I'm going to have Stephen explain the general idea of the electricity and the construction of the building in his post. That all being said, I took pictures of some of the lighting and it's really dynamic and I thought I would share. Again... ignore pikachu.

The last picture here is just no lights, just a general idea of the layout thus far and how light hits it without limitations.

Calculations: Round 2

I'm glad we decided to make the apartments bigger instead of making my scale smaller, because most dollhouse scales work off 3/4in = 1ft, so if I were to use any prefabricated items as a base, they would not be the right scale, nor would any of the minis that I had already finished. So after all that cutting and tongue and grooving... it was all done over so everything looked pleasing and not so cluttered.
The one problem we did run across was the long hallway and dining area. Originally there were double door size entryways leading to the living room and the hallway. Unfortunately the way it was set up, there was no logical traffic pattern once I added the furniture. We knocked down the dining room walls and shortened the entry "hallway" to make a great deal more room for furniture. It's a very open floor plan, which works wonderfully with all of the set ups, it's just hard for me to recompile my ideas based off the completely different floor layout style. It had become much like a studio apartment.
The pictures below are the walls and rough flooring of the apartments. There are going to be cabinets over the gaps in the kitchen area (the notepad is a space holder), metal door jams (or something like it), trim, window treatments and doors. There's also going to be a whole lot of things in the apartments, and I'm really excited to film my process of putting each of them together.

The quarter is to show you the general size of the bed and apartments. If you haven't noticed already, this stuff is really really tiny. The couch now has pillows and no pikachu (don't ask, I needed something amusing for scale). The fridge also isn't finished, so Don't worry I know this isn't exactly motivating as far as my actual talent goes. Baby steps, my friends. Keep in mind that this is only 1 apartment of the 6. All the apartments are going to fit into the outer shell of the building but I'll have a demonstration of Stephen assembling it, when the time comes.

Okay now I didn't tell you I had finished the beds did I? Well based on what you know about the tenants, see if you can guess whose bed is whose. They're cluttered, yes, BUT that's part of the challenge.

Also, for those of you wondering what any reference to "the cave" may be... it's my little workshop, where the wonderful world of little tiny things are made. Glance into my world.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Calculations: Round 1

Sorry, sorry for not having updated sooner but I'm about to post a few in a row to catch up... minor camera/computer difficulties, no worries.
Thank you to the lovely Jennifer Mark, I got some wonderful floor plans, apartment layouts and some very confusing but ultimately very correct measurements. Anyway, Stephen Bodiford and I went to work making things to the scale everyone had decided on, which was 3/4in = 1ft. I went to work crafting all the photos, labels, etc. as you have seen in the previous posts as well as starting in making all 6 beds. I calculated all of the measurements of everything using my scale ruler so I knew everything had to be right (in theory). Well Stephen went ahead and cut all of the wood for the apartments based on Jen's drawings and had it all ready to put together when we realized how large the bed I had made actually looked in the apartment. I had told Jen to make each apartment as close to a foot wide as possible, so that I could keep it a reasonable size. Turns out, when you ask the designer to do things against norm, you sacrifice things... like space. The apartment she drew came up to be a little over 300 square feet. That's tiny, itty bitty tiny. Since at this point time is of the essence, Stephen drew up the new plans which worked well for him since hes building the "dollhouse" itself. The new plans are twice as large which yields an enormous project, but still not quite as big as Mexico (still haven't forgotten about it, I ran into difficulties filming). I'll let you see what we had first and then you can see what we're working with now.

That's about how far I got with the beds, I had pretty much completed this one when we realized the size problem.

That's the floor plan that Jen had made. You can see the bed parts in the background (Queen Size), so you understand the footage problem we were having. All the lines under that carpet that's going down, are walls. It was very small, compact even.
The video above is much of Stephen's hard work cutting and fitting the first run of the apartments. I set it to Hyperdrive, enjoy.