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Hi, Thanks for visiting my website. My name is Will and if you have questions
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Todd's Frogman Diorama

Here is a wonderful water scene diorama that has some amazing motion and action in it.

A diorama captures a moment in time and sometimes that moment is full of action, like this one is.

This was made by Todd H. and my thanks go to him for sharing the pictures and information with us.

He calls himself an artist in four dimensions and he is right ! Diorama making is art in four dimensions.


One of the amazing things about this diorama is the exploding water effect. In this article Todd tells us how he did it.


The diorama

Todd has given us some before and after shots which shows us a bit about how it was made. And he tells us more:

As to the modeling tips:

I layered applications of water effects, alternating clear and shades of Blue, once the sand and beach obstacles were glued in for the base.

The obstacles are spare bits coated with baking soda and rust colored modeling paint--and sprinkled with coarse sea salt lightly sanded for barnacles. It is about half an inch thick--the final, 'ocean' level. It took several applications of 1/8" pours (make sure very well dried before adding next layer). The light being able to penetrate adds mightily to the overall deep-water effect. I used a fan to quick dry the effects, which helped ruffle the surface. I used standard gel silicone to sculpt the waves and spray action--giving it the more dynamic look. Then I simply used a teal blue water gel, dabbed strategically to represent the wave bases, white water effects gel for the crests, and lightly touched it all up overall with white model paint (Just the tips of the crests).

The explosion


The 'explosion' is cotton balls glued together, and spray-coated gently with water/Elmer's glue mixture, The toy sharks were added beforehand, and placed where they looked the best. A couple applications of glue water, and it eventually hardens into the shape you wish.


The divers are harder to see, but during one pour, red paint was dribbled in faint ribbons and swirled with the tip of a toothpick to simulate wounds (they are swimming back to the boat, between the dinghy and the diver placing the satchel charge on the obstacle). I am currently using the same technique (see Vietnam Flamethrower jet from previous Tet Offensive Diorama: M48) to shape a radiator leak on a German rocket-bearing Half-track, for my Karl-Device mega diorama.

Thanks again, and keep modeling! Plastic miniatures waging frozen war moments in time, are much better than living through the real thing;-] Keep on rocking, Will! Respectfully, Holjeson, Todd. Artist in four-dimensions.

The diorama


An other view of the diorama


The frogmen


Overhead view



Woodland Scenics Water Effects

Woodland Scenics Water Effects -

Heavy bodied product which is moldable and will hold its shape. -Create pond ripples waterfalls or rapidly moving water. -Dries clear in about 24 hours. -Capacity: 8 Fluid ounce. -Made in the USA. Product Type: -Art Kits.


Woodland Scenics Realistic Water

Woodland Scenics Realistic Water -

Use to model still or slow-moving water, such as ponds, rivers, lakes and more. Pour directly from the bottle. Realistic Water is self-leveling. Pour no more than 1/8" deep. Dries clear in approximately 24 hours and the bottle covers an area 17" in diameter when poured to the recommended depth of 1/8".


Will's Book on Diorama Making

Will's book

How to Make Fantasy and Medieval Dioramas

This books shows you how to make fantasy and medieval dioramas using many commonly available tools and materials. There are over 100 pictures and illustrations showing you how to make great dioramas in fantasy and medieval styles. Chapters include basics, water effects, terrain tips and special effects like electricity and small motors. Tutorials include how to use foam, plaster of paris and paper mache to make great looking dioramas.