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…

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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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When in Rome, do like the Romans do…”Stazione Montelupo”

Bella Italia! If you don´t have the time to spend your holidays in Italy, an option may be to build your next layout in italian style… “Montelupo” was my try to have the attractive mixture of ancient ruines and ordinary industrial buildings on 165 x 35 cm. Especially the aqueduct – made of styrofoam – was my favorite fixed idea. I´m not quite sure that there are such situations in italian reality…but it could be… After three Inglenooks it´s obvious that Montelupo belongs more to the category “lots of tracks”. In the northeastern corner you can find a rudimental staging track. The rare passenger trains took advantage from the single platform (please recognize the palm trees, which are signalling: “yes, that´s somewhere in the south!”) and  the scooter factory provides a lot of wagonloads – enough work for the operator. The trackwork was Piko A.

Arrivederci!
Alex