toy diorama

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Rebor has done it again with their museum class replica dinosaur dioramas, but these names sure are a mouthful!

Our apex predator is the Acrocanthosaurus atokensis (a.k.a. “Hercules”), who was minding his own business eating his Tenontosaurus tilletti dinner before the “Cerberus Clan” of Deinonychus antirrhopus (a.k.a. “Shoot,” “Tooth,” and “Thrill”) showed up. Looks like somebody may have bitten off more than they could chew! 🍴

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Vintage SOTA Toys “Now Playing” horror figures.

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Got some new furniture and props–including an AMAZEBALLS 1:6 scale upright piano to replace the terrible Byers Choice one. This was a Mr Christmas holiday player piano beat all to hell that I got for $35 on evilbay. I removed all the inner workings, replaced the front with wood, and painted it. I am STUPIDLY HAPPY with it, tho at some point I need to get casters for it.

Also got a PERFECT 1:6 milk crate from Shapeways. Alas, it is so perfect that the 1:6 albums I made don’t quite fit inside. So I may have to tweak them–or make some new ones that are just 3mm smaller, so they fit more comfortably inside.

I decided Kimber, Stormer, and Riot are spending the afternoon working. Kimber’s brainstorming lyrics, Riot’s working on a new melody, and Stormer is frustrated because she just can’t get the bridge of her new song quite right.

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Spinning Discs by MiskatonicNick 

Kancolle Set Build

Since my Kancolle nendoroid collection seems to keep growing, I decided to make a little diorama to display them in! Since it was a lot of fun to make I took a few photos of the process of building it.

Along with using it for display, the set should definitely come in handy for photo stuff when the other kongou sisters arrive. I’m looking forward to using it more in the future for photography!

Kongou helps to construct the wainscoting for the set. Made out of colored paper, I used two shades of brown to give a sense of depth.

Windows are cut! Foamcore is great stuff to work with when doing stuff like this. I pasted on some textured paper to give the walls an off white color & some added texture.

Window trim and wainscoting added, things are starting to come together!

Since this will only be viewed from the inside, what the outside looks like doesn’t matter too much. Window panes are added by taping strips of paper to the outside, then a translucent paper is taped over for diffusing light

With the walls put together, it’s starting to look like an actual room! The wood floor is achieved by using textured paper.

Kongou approves!

As time moves on I’ll work on adding various accessories to make it more home like. I’m looking forward to using it more in the future for photography!

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What I like about this particular thrift store is their display of vintage (or “vintage”) dollhouse furniture that looks like some kind of if not postapocalyptic then at least postmodern diorama. I’m not sure what happened here, but obviously there’s been a hell of a party at the sort of place that has three toilets, four velvet upholstered chairs and a piano in the bathroom, and it’s possible the whole thing was directed by Fellini.

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Canadian lawmen…. by Harry Hendriks 

A Cow Is Not A Superhero

Re: Anon. My thoughts on ‘the discourse’. Applicable to many 'discourses’.

Background: I’m a 25-year-old bi man who calls himself a writer, and I used to look after kids.

(Don’t worry this isn’t going where you think it is.)

I’m trained to do it. Good at doing it. Paperwork was hell, as well as seeing how much you can’t help when people need it. But I digress.

One of my favourite things to do was lay out the toys. Cus whether kids are just crawling, or about to go to big school, that first moment is always the most telling.

Sometimes I’d put out random objects, and I’d lay them out by shape, or texture, or colour.

Sometimes they’d be more of your classic toys, and I’d make dioramas - a garage of cars, a scene at the beach, a farm.

It’s those ones that I want to talk about.

I loved seeing what they came up with; they have an incredible ability to immediately create stories in the same way I never grew out of, and they often liked telling me them so we could make up stuff together.

Some kids would wander over, see that I had made a farm, and start playing farm. They liked playing with the story I’d made for them. They’d name the farmers, the animals, make horses jump over fences, pretend to feed the pigs.

Some kids would wander over, see all the toys, and then pick up Connie Cow in her milking parlour, and declare it was now a superhero that zapped the bad guys with its lazer milk dangles (“her lazer udders.” “Zap 'em with her lazer udders!”)

And occasionally some kids, sometimes from Category A, sometimes those who hadn’t even wanted to play with the farm before, would come over and say my least favourite words:

“You’re playing with it wrong!”

This was usually followed up with such classics as: “You’re not supposed to do that!”, “This goes here” and “It’s not a superhero, it’s a cow”.

I thought of these kids as The Play Police.

I don’t want you to think I was judging them - of course not, they’re young, they’re learning, they were often in fact the ones who would be deemed the 'brightest’.

They did what they did because they had learned how stories worked, and this went uncomfortably beyond those boundaries. They had parents who told them to do something and then they’d learned they had to do it that way or there would be consequences. They liked order and things making sense, far more than they liked kids inflicting chaos and nonsense on what they saw as their stuff. They had seen me putting the scene together and in their empathy thought I wouldn’t like them being played with differently. They looked at the toys and saw their equivalent in the real world in their mind, and so kept to those rules - cars don’t fly, a book is for reading not for making a teddy bear tent, a cow is not a superhero.

Gently, I would tell them that I wanted everyone to play however they liked, I had given the toys for them to do whatever they wanted with, even if it wasn’t the same as the idea I’d had in mind, and I liked seeing what everyone came up with. So long as nobody was hurting each other, they could do whatever they liked.

Sometimes the child would say ok, and we’d go and find something else to do, or read, or make.

But more often, it didn’t matter. Because it wasn’t about what I wanted, or what the other children found fun, it wasn’t even because they were genuinely sad, or upset, or frightened. It was because their ideas of how things should be played with were being challenged.

(An important aside: Humans are innately selfish. All beings are. Especially children. There isn’t anything deeply wrong with this - though as we get older, we are expected to understand the world is experienced by a lot of people, and to think of other people’s points of view. Young children can not do this, and certainly not to the same degree as adults. It is not a moral deficit, it’s simply not how they’re built.)

And these children would get upset. They wouldn’t be distracted, but would stand and - like I imagine many of their parents did - demand things to be played with correctly. The other children would be a bit bewildered. Maybe they’d leave and find something else to play with. Or do what the child said until they left and could quietly continue their fun as before.

Or they would hold their plastic toy to their chest and say:

“No! She’s a superhero, not a cow.”

An upset child is quickly an angry child. They start yelling, and throwing a tantrum, while I try to settle them down. The other child who just wants to play with their lazer-udder superhero starts crying, and through their sobs they say that they know it’s a cow, and that they’re just playing.

Then the angry child tries to pull the cow away, and they’re fighting over it, and before I can separate them, someone’s got a face full of plastic hooves, and now someone has actually been harmed by all of this.


So, my feelings:

If someone wants to pretend a toy cow is a superhero, then let them. Because the toy cow isn’t an actual cow either - you’re playing pretend as well, but it’s the way you’re 'supposed to’, so you don’t even notice you’re doing it. I assure you, no grown-up is watching their game and thinking that this means that real cows contain lazers instead of milk and have the gift of flight. And the more you get wound up by people not playing with the cow the way you want them to, the worse you feel, and the greater the chance that you might be part of the reason that some playful silliness turns into somebody getting genuinely hurt.

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1:6th Scale Barbie Toy Store Diorama - Mattel Toy Store Play Set, Basic Fun Key Chains, Polly Pocket Bluebird houses, Hallmark Ornaments, Micro Action  Figures, Playskool, Little Tikes, and Fisher Price dollhouse replica toys, mini Barbies, Capsule toys, Re-ment Strawberry, tiny Lego-like blocks from Michael’s Crafts, a 1:144th Garfield my friend made for me, and a Tupperware Key Chain. Feel free to ask about anything I didn’t list. The background is paper covered foam core. The Lundby miniature replica is one that I made. A real children’s store called “Twilo” was my inspiration for the tree and owls design elements. I have been collecting miniature toys for several years, and I thought it would be fun to do a store scene where I could put most of them together in one place. 

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All of the books in my miniature library are made of cardboard and paper (some are store-bought mini books, but the Disney ones I made). The paintings are done by various artists whose work I found online, and the huge Beauty and the Beast painting is a mini print of Thomas Kinkades artwork. Most of the little props I’ve collected from various Playsets and stuff. A couple of them I made from Polymer clay, like the little keyblade and paopu fruit : ) The swords on the wall belong to prince Phillip (the sword of truth), Mulan, and Aladdin, along with Mulan’s crest of the emporer hanging from them, all above Phillips shield. I’d be happy to answer any questions you might have about how I made (or found) the stuff in my diorama! Hope you all like it ♡