Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Generic Industries - 3

Yes, they need some additional details, some more vegetation, and weathering (and the building supply dealer needs the doors glued in place!) but the scene is starting to come together. 

I'll wrap up this short segment on the "Generic Industries" - follow on posts on final scenic treatment and details and the like will use the names of the industries. For the last couple of weeks I've been diligently working on three projects - rotating from one to another as interest, paint and glue drying time, and time available indicate. So, at the same time I've been working on this project I've been doing some work on the locomotive fleet, and also finishing Derby & Ball. I'll address the "generic industries" scene first. 
Total time invested so far is a couple of evenings and a rainy, muggy weekend day. The payoff is pretty big since a six-foot stretch of the railroad looks much closer to "done" than it did a couple of weeks ago!
A couple of other lessons learned from this exercise:
The American Models factory seemed very undersized when first placed in the scene. I knew it needed to be a little beefier - or it was going into the circular file. 
1. As predicted, the kits I used were sufficiently generic enough that they don't jump out and scream "XYZ Kit" when viewing the scene. At some point I might go back and scratch build prototype-specific structures. In the meantime I've replaced a large open "lot" with something that looks somewhat finished. Goal achieved. 
2. One problem with using kits can be seen in this view. I swear some kits that say "HO" on the box are closer to N scale. I get selective compression. And I get the need for it. When it's a "stand alone" building the fact that it's undersized is not often obvious. But it can be a real problem when you have several actual scale sized structures around it. Or when you spot a boxcar next to it and see the boxcar is bigger than the building! 
That was the case with the American Models kit. The "main" building has great lines and was easy to build. But it looked undersized. Frankly, I was about to pitch it in the trash when I figured I'd see if I could make it just a little bigger. The solution was the line side warehouse from Walthers. I butted it up against the American Models kit and it seemed to make the scale look a little better. I followed this up with a small office building for the "complex" that I'd built from an American Model Yard Office kit I built years ago (back in my MR days???). The color scheme on the office determined the color scheme on the rest of the buildings. 

The Foundry buildings in place. The addition of the Walthers warehouse gives the complex some much needed size. Still need to "plant" the structures and the tree! Then there will be additional details - maybe some more fences, and some additional weathering. 
The color scheme brings up another interesting point. Christine looked at the group of finished, but not detailed buildings, and pronounced the whole rather… 
well "dull" was one of the words used. 
When you marry an artist you better be prepared to hear things like "That's very nice. but it seems monotone and dull … maybe something besides gray buildings?" I got a reprise when I explained the "new" freight house would be red….

I get it - the old two story freight house is "weathered" wood - so it's basically gray. The foundry complex is gray with gray-green trim. And the building supply warehouse is a faded "industrial" green. 


  1. I might have added a base foundation of concrete, cinderblock or brick (or all three) under that short kit to give it more heft, but combining it with another kit and creating a group of three (always a safe artistic bet) using a freestanding office made a nice cluster or structures. And do you really want more color when you've already got such terrific fall foliage?

  2. The yellowish building really looks good. The shape and angle make it really convincing. The amount of generic building really helps to make it a credible industry spot and stretches the impression of a lengthy scene. Your work truly paid off! Great job!

  3. Marty, it's really looking great! My only query is, do you think the 'back' tracks will be difficult to reach, over the buildings?