Postestas Clavium diorama blog

Potestas Clavium


the weather has been awful and the Masséna still awaits for its sea. So could it be I am scattering myself a bit? The big masséna lacking its figure and sea: 3 weeks worth of evenings job. I am currently working on a dio provisionnaly entitled "the End of captalism", and this very one whose SBS I start here and on facebook is already completed but lacks its base and -well perhaps a little bit of soul that i will try to figure out those next weeks before airing completed pictures.
So this will probably be the last SBS I am doing here before at least 6 months. This diorama will be small and a sort of attempt to tackle the decayed post Soviet Russia -think Prypiat and the like. I have 33 pictures to show, maybe more as it is not entirely finished. There will be quite a few techniques displayed, I hope you will like!
the rules of the game are the same as for the previous one: the SBS will run for at least 2 weeks with a minium of 5 posts a week, everytime with 1 , 2 or 3 murky pictures because I can't do anything better (yet this will chnage for further ones as I think i took the right path recently).
Anyway, here we start by once again modifying an unsound DML plastic soldier, rearanging arms, stripping the fig before adding some new clothes out of Magic Sculp and Duro

The dog and Alexander Kaïdanovski

Two posts in one today, first some murky pictures of the head I sculpted in Duro. He is Alexandre Kaïdanovski of Stalker fame (but also some nice Mikalkov movie I saw). Died pretty young because he drank too much. I already aired a painted version of that special sculpting bit.

Next is the dog. Not very big and of undetermined race. Just a dog basically.. Out of Duro and Magic sculp. I had to fill and sand it quite a bit after that last picture was taken


Here is the completed dog of Duro and Magic Sculp

MS is rather soft but doesn't glue to anything. yet it is ideal to do clothings etc. While Duro is more of a chewing gum texture and glues pretty well to a wire frame. it is also ideal for hair etc as it holds its details much better, but then you can't sand it well and it has not always the best "feeling". That was stupid from me to do that head in Duro only. usually I use some 30% Duro 70% MS for heads.. Mixing them is the way to go most of the time.

Homemade Photoetch (again)

And now for something completely different. Homemade photoetch!! Not very fine I must say but enough for most of my 1/35 projects. it's been 5 years i am doing some now and I must say i have been streamlining it quite efficiently. The process is too long to be explained like that, but the first picture shows an insulated metal plaque.

The second one actually shows a trick: to dip it a few seconds in the etching tank, all the drawings must be really visible, if they aren't, you have to dip it again in the revealing acid!

And after an hour or so you get Rhine-gold..

So what was it for? Well some tiles on the floor, some letterings for a poster, some metallic round plaques for an electric device..


st for that diorama, the first being some glass apparatus for an electrical device (don't know the name of the thing, even in French), the second one is some glass brick for some factory wall.
To do the electrical thing I used some bottle from an old Verlinden (?) resin sprue as a base ...

while I used some old PE grid to make the pattern on the glass brick.

I then worked a plastic form around it and put some silicon over it.

Hey but how do you prevent *bubbles* in the form??

The solution was provided in the excellent "STATIC MODEL MANUAL Building - One hundred and one tips". Well, at the last pages of the fine book, there are quite a few pictures and explanations about the device you have to build to make a sort of pump that will suck out the air in the form. So, being mostly unable at 1/1 work, I went to my stepbrother who despite having a zero tolerance / interest for my little things accepted basically built the machine for me :)

In 30 seconds I had some wonderful bubble free silicon forms :) (to be continued...

more forms and glass bricks

So here is one of the first electrical devices in transparent resin straight from the form.. followed by several others including the firsts of my glass bricks.

Then, As I thought I wasn't that clear about the figure, here are both man and dog in their definitive layout.

Potestas Clavium groundwork

How a bit of groundwork?? those pictures are sort of fake because this very version pictured here currently lies down the drain in the garden. I had to do all this all over again because of a basic failure I did.
(more on that later). I still post them because I did exactly the same thing a few weeks later.

Anyway here is first a plastic sheet with all the tiles glued, then this plaque put into place on a thick plastic base. then some plaster to add some relief and details.

At this stage you may notice that the level stops abruptly at roughly 6mm high.. All the extra relief will be added afterwards.

Even more plaster work

So here is more plaster work, which means designing what will be *above* the water level.

Some half set plaster chunks put on plasticard trying to make them correspond with the flat parts above water level. Then I pressed the figure in the still wet plaster to get the shape right.

Then some plasticard glued, let's pour plaster in and here we have two halves of wall angle.. then let's sculpt the individual bricks

Painting the base

And now just one picture for today -but with a bit of colour. that's it Vallejo Air paints (the number one paints to clog airbrushes), some of their base paint (grey, white and Panzer Gray) and then lots of masking tape so that I can airbrush each of the tiles independantly from the other.

painting the groundwork

Okay so now most of the elements are painted. The letters were done with the hairspray method: rust brown under faded red paint. the whole makes a bit eerie. Sadly i don't have a better picture of those for now..
And then a closeup of the terrain itself complete with shadows etc.. i put the X-Acto blade so that you have an idea of the rather tiny size of the layout

Potestas Clavium

My new diorama Potestas Clavium -of course I will resume the SBS soon after :) This is actually a diorama that is on since end of January and I am quite happy to put it on air at long last.
thanks for looking here