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Hooper & Co Diorama


29 posts in this topic

Posted

Hi folks...... I have been working on a 1:24 scale diorama for nearly one year now, and it is almost ready for me to show some pics on this forum.

The building is the famous Rolls-Royce, Daimler and Bentley coachbuilders as it was in 1958, and is located at St James's Street in London.

There are quite a few vehicles including Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud motor cars, also Rolls-Royce Phantom I, II and III motor cars, an Austin FX4 taxi, an early type AEC Routemaster bus, a Vincent Black Shadow motorcycle, Hispano Suiza, Jaguar XK120, 1886 Daimler-Benz carriage and a Bedford tanker truck to follow soon.

Some of the 1:24 scale cars I have built from kits, one is moulded and cast in resin by myself, some are Franklin Mint and Danbury Mint diecast models and one is a Hubley promo model. Kits used have come from Minicraft, Revell, Italeri and Emhar.

The Hooper building is entirely scratch built and to compliment this there is a telephone box, pillar box, tree, bus stop, zebra crossing with belisha beacons, pavements, flagstones, cobblestones and grates, all scratch built. There are a few 3D printed figures from Shapeways and a street lamp from Shapeways.

The building has interior lighting on all three floors, which are LED aquarium lamps, and additional lighting is provided in the form of three 100W daylight bulbs.

This diorama when completed, will be exhibited at the 2018 Rolls-Royce Enthusiasts Club Annual Rally at Burghley House in Stamford, which is a three day event for Rolls-Royce and Bentley owners from all around the world. My research has made use of material from the Science Museum Archives, the RREC archives, also Denver Public Library archives in Colorado USA, and the Rolls-Royce Foundation of North America and Canada, as well as the Royal Colwood Golf Club of Victoria, British Columbia in Canada.

I am not sure about uploading photos within a post just yet, so this is a test image that I have included in this post. More will follow if anyone is interested in the ongoing project. Thanks for looking...... David Watson of Derbyshire, England, U.K.

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Posted

Looks like some excellent work.  I definitely would be interested in more pictures.

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Posted

Looks like some excellent work.  I definitely would be interested in more pictures.

Me too.  This is a great teaser, more shots would be much appreciated.

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Posted

Here are a few ' teaser ' photos for Ricky and Paul as requested !

David

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Posted

WOW. Amazing build.

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Posted

Awesome!

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Posted

Thank you for the pictures.  Truly amazing work.

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Posted

The build of the AEC London bus is very nearly complete and it only needs the advertising banners putting in place.

Having moved the bus to the diorama, here are a few photos of the scene. You can see four lanes of the wide St James's Street and the narrow side street which is Bennet Street. Overtaking the stationary bus there is a London black taxi cab and this is a diecast model by Welly Nex. The Revell bus has taken two months to build, including the front end conversion from the later Routemaster as it is in the box, to the earlier type bus with the old style radiator and different engine cover panel. Parked on Bennet Street outside the the Hooper & Co building there is a left-hand drive version of the Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud from Canada and this motor car is finished in the colour Velvet Green, which appears to be black until seen in bright sunlight when it assumes a very dark green.

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Posted

I like the AEC conversion, we had AEC buses in Halifax.

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Posted

Yes Paul, although the Routemaster version of the bus as featured in the Revell kit was introduced into public service in 1958, which is the year of my diorama, I much prefer the earlier design. The front end looks so much I better I feel. The scratch built conversion was very tricky but I am quite pleased with the result.

David

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Posted

Just a few photos of the rear end of the London bus, using some clever camera angles.

David

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Posted

Looks like some excellent work.  I definitely would be interested in more pictures.

Me too! I'm always interested in folks who do something truly unique .

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Posted

Love it.

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Posted

The bus now has advertising banner posters on the nearside, and also a few photos of the five Rolls-Royce Silver Clouds.

From right to left you can see the Minicraft version of the Silver Cloud, then the Revell version, followed by the resin cast version of mine, then the Hubley promo version and finally the Franklin Mint diecast version. Shortly I will be building two more Silver Clouds so that I have one for each year of production, which is 1955, 1956, 1957, 1958 and 1959.

David

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Posted

This is fantastic!  Please keep the pictures coming. 

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Posted

Like many other members on this MCM forum I am a great admirer of the work of Michael Paul Smith and the extremely high quality of the scale buildings, the authentic diecast motor cars, the brilliant photography is something we would all love to aspire to, but probably never will. The one aspect of Michael's diorama scenes that fascinates me in particular is the comment that I see frequently..... there are no people. No figures, no people ? This made me think long and hard when I began putting together my Hooper & Co diorama, because I had decided that I would include 1:24 scale figures as well as the cars, the building, the bus and all the other elements of this diorama. I am not aware of the reason why Michael Paul Smith chose not to include people, but as a true professional the man must have had a very good reason not to. I imagine it is partly because no matter how good your figures are, you will always run the risk of compromising the realism of your model vehicles and your scale buildings. I have tried to use Shapeways 3D printed figures where possible as they are really good, if rather expensive. I do feel that it is important to have people in the diorama in order to give the whole scene more life, and a suggestion of movement even. I am interested to hear other member's thoughts on this issue. Thanks for looking at my images also.

David

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Posted

David,

Is the Vincent a kit?

Thanks

steve

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Posted

Steve,

The Vincent Black Shadow HRD ( 1954 ) is not a kit, it's a diecast with some plastic parts and there are loads of them on Ebay.

If you search for Atlas IXO Classic and 1:24 Vincent you will see many for sale  quite cheaply, between £10.00 and £15.00 usually.

It is a very nice model and I wanted to include a 1950's motorcycle in my diorama..

David

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Posted

The bus build is completed now and the bus is parked at the bus stop in the diorama. These next photos show the content of the diorama rather than the scenes that will be set up for the more advanced photography, which will require some playing around with lighting and camera angles. I am hoping to produce quite a lot of black & white images that should be in keeping with the 1950's theme. One idea that I have come up with is to mount my camera on a small flat rolling chassis that can be pushed or pulled along the roads of the diorama. This would allow me to produce a short video of how the diorama would look as though seen from the driving position of a 1:24 scale car. Further ideas include creating the appearance of wet roads and cars after it has been raining.

David

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Posted

Steve,

The Vincent Black Shadow HRD ( 1954 ) is not a kit, it's a diecast with some plastic parts and there are loads of them on Ebay.

If you search for Atlas IXO Classic and 1:24 Vincent you will see many for sale  quite cheaply, between £10.00 and £15.00 usually.

It is a very nice model and I wanted to include a 1950's motorcycle in my diorama..

David

Thanks David.

I have a friend who used to own a Vincent so I will pass that on.

steve

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Posted

Awesome work...!

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Posted

Thank you for your comment Mark, and like you I have inherited an interest in building scale models from my Dad, who passed away 12 years ago now, Seems there are many members on this wonderful forum who also follow in their Dad's footsteps. I don't have any models that my Dad built sadly, but I do have his N gauge model railway layout that is all packed away in boxes for safekeeping. Very often when I am building a particular model car I get the feeling that my Dad is watching over what I am doing and somehow is guiding me how to do it properly. I might be struggling to find a solution to a problem, and suddenly out of nowhere I know exactly how to put it right.... thanks Dad !

David

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Posted

David.... I know that feeling and its a good one.  I just wish I could find the needed parts to get more of my dads old ones restored but have not had any luck yet...maybe someday..?

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Posted

I guess the right time will come along. and if the parts are out there you will find them. If I hadn't chosen to concentrate on Rolls-Royce Silver Clouds from 1955 to 1959, along with Phantom I, Phantom II and Phantom III from 1929 to 1938, I would have chosen American cars from the 1950's and maybe 1940's too. There are lots of kits and resin bodies available on the world market for such cars, whereas the availability of kits for the best car in the world is very limited. Actually, the Minicraft people in Illinois have been extremely helpful, and they even sent me a replacement windscreen that was damaged in one of my kits from USA, free of charge! Considering the kit has been out of production for quite some time, this was marvellous after sales service from this company. There is a Revell version of the Silver Cloud kit, which uses the same tool, and I did manage to purchase an original Hubley promo from 1959. Also I have produced a mould for the Rolls-Royce body shell and cast two bodies, one of which features in the Hooper & Co diorama. ( photo attached ).

David

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Posted

Amazing work.

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