The two most challenging parts of building to me are adding details and backdrops. I am at the point where these are the next steps.
Details are difficult in that you have to create a believable scene. The details have to look like they have been there a while and not just set on the layout. In 1/24 scale there is not an abundance of things to buy. Making details takes a while. I look on each as a small individual model and since the layout is small it is manageable. Woodie's Mogollon and Silver City layouts are examples of the standards we should be trying to achieve. I am a long way from reaching that level but will be trying.
Backdrops will be in the future. I want to try photo backdrops but have to find the right scenes to start with. It appears to me the first challenge will be finding scenes that can be photographed from the right angle. We look down on most railroad layouts so the scene needs to have that perspective.
The attached picture is my version of a small ash pit. The I beams are not perfect but since I made them from cardstock I am ok with that.
Added bump stops at rail ends. For variety I made different styles. The I beam one is made from cardstock like the ash pit. Painted with acrylics with a little fine sand added for rusty texture. The wooden one is made from balsa that was ruffed up by dragging a razor saw along the wood grain. A couple bolt heads for detail. Also painted with acrylics.
Made a bunch of stumps. Started with some lilac branch and formed modeling putty around them. Textured a bit and painted with acrylics when dried. "Planted" them along front edge of layout. My excuse for not having to many foreground trees is the need to reach the rolling stock for manual coupling/uncoupling.
My first test of background is promising. I took a picture of the rear of buildings on the main street of a small town nearby. Not wanting to waste a bunch of ink I enlarged and printed it in B&W. It needs to be enlarged a bit more. I envision that I can overlay auto pictures that are of the correct vintage etc. Once I find suitable scenes I will have the pictures done at Kinkos or similar shop.
Any experts that want to guide me will be welcomed. I take criticism quite well.
I lost my internet access for a few days and am just catching up...
I think that the beams above ARE perfect. I also model in 1/24 and know the pain of finding details. The background will be good I think. I'm absorbing all of your posts, like a sponge soaking up water... Please continue.
One of the most important details is people. I bought the Henry Ford three person set recently. These look the part for 1949 dress. Will need another 20 or 30 folks to adequately populate the layout. It is difficult to find appropriate figures and they are always costly. Wish I had the skill to create my own.
My grandfather and his brother had a small trucking company way back when. He also drove Hudsons. I added grandpa and his Hudson by Alexander Shipping Co.
I'm experimenting with casting my own figures out of hot glue. First the molds have to be made, from silicone, then the glue... This is being done on the cheap, hopefully regular high temp silicone caulk will work for the mold and I already know the glue will work for the subject.
I have two of the sets of 'Henry Ford' figures and intend to experiment with them for casting. The heads are interchangeable, so I may be able to get some variety out of them. Adding body parts from some of the Chinese resin figures is also a possibility.
This background shot was only a test. I will need a more expansive scene and will have to adjust the camera angle to have the view to the horizon go off in the right direction. In this view the road is not aligned with my foreground structures correctly. I envision some foreground trees and fencing to disguise the rear edge of the layout and add three dimension to the scene.
All doable and the time of year is about right for foliage. Need to start looking for photo sights and the right time of day and weather.