The Backdrop Question – Is Black Beautiful?

One of the main issues of micro railroading is to simulate the wideness of landscape. Hmm…how to achieve, if there are only a few centimeters in depth? If you are a gifted painter, grap brush and colors and paint your favorite landscape on the layouts rear wall. If you are not…better try a less ambitious alternative.  Ok, no backdrop is not the best choice, that´s obvious…

without-backdrop
…”Schnakenhörn” started without a backdrop…

May be a more neutral backdrop is a possibility to solve our problem? Let´s try a black backdrop. Not bad at all…isn´t it? I liked the dramatic look…but after some time I have had enough of the permanent stormy atmosphere…

backdrop-black-1

backdrop-sky-1
…”Krumme Fohre” changed from black to sky blue…

My next attempt was to use a panoramic photo as a backdrop. I am not quite content with reflections and edges, but overall (and for the moment) I like the naturalistic version more.

backdrop-black-2

KF Panorama schmal
…the same comparison..abstract or naturalistic…

The same story once more…Also “Grub am Forst” got rid of it´s black backdrop. The new one was a commercial backdrop showing a bucolic scenery. Unfortunately I wasn´t able to avoid problems with gluing. Using spray adhesive was not one of my best ideas…

backdrop-black-3

Backdrop-landscape-1
…”Grub am Forst” moved from black to blue, too…

There are two more versions left. In Europe the sky is often more grey than blue. So I tried light grey at my harbour station “Weserkai”. Looks more friendly and reminds me of a rainy day at the coast…

backdrop-grey
…grey may be an alternative…seen at “Weserkai”…
backdrop-mirror
…”Sioux Falls” – and now for something completely different: the mirror trick…

For the sake of completeness I have to mention the mirror trick. At “Sioux Falls” the mirror was used to make the layout seem longer. Ok, your choice. There is more than one way leading to Rome…

Cheers!
Alex

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“Grub am Forst”…another inglenook…

210 cm x 45 cm ist a bit too large? Ok, let´s have a look on somewhat less. To be honest, that´s H0, 1:87. Not surprisingly, we now need only 165 x 35 cm (5,4 x 1,14 ft). The smaller scale is both a blessing and a curse. Older railroaders need stronger glasses to see details (ok…may also concern younger hobbyists), but – wow – we gaining space for a “sneak off track”, which enables the operator to spirit trains away. Despite to the track plan the spur was´nt covered by buildings…as you can see, certainly. The small Terminus “Grub am Forst” (I borrowed this name from a small town in Northern Bavaria) could handle the well- known 3:3:5 wagon inglenook configuration and short passenger trains. Not bad for only three points…should be suitable also for your bookshelf, I suppose…

Cheers!
Alex