That is not a reference to the famous 18th century marching song nor yet to Australia being Down Under. We have looked outside and we are not down under anything, though the federal government has been doing its best to produce that effect…
It is a reference to the model diorama seen at this year’s Dollhouse And Miniatures Show at Bogan Central. I am an aficionado of dioramas, and particularly the ones of garages, so this scene immediately caught my eye.
I suspect it is 1:12 scale – so much of the dollhouse work is this size. I think it a good choice for many house and room miniatures but it is somewhat of a rarity amongst the scale modellers and diecast collectors. But more on that later*.
I don’t think I have ever seen this sort of model vehicle – patterned after a Model A Ford pickup – made in polished wood. I am used to seeing it in 1:24 or 1:16 as a plastic kit or in 1:18 as a diecast. Indeed I have several in my collection. But a wood kit seems very strange indeed. Not bad, and certainly not badly-made, but somewhat of a leap from the reality of the rest of the diorama.
The figures are suitably dressed, but readers of this column will have learned previously what I think about including human maquettes in scale scenes.
The score for me is to look at the turning lathe on the workbench. This shows real observational powers as well as imagination on the part of the builder. It is this sort of detail that really makes a small world come alive. I am wondering if the builder will decide to make it a working workshop in the future by leaving tools on the bench and dirtying up the environment,. I know what I would do, but then it is not my little world.
* Sun Star diecast models are available in 1:12 scale and are absolutely perfect. You can get several Morris and Volkswagen types in this scale. I aspire to one… one day, but am always distracted by 1:18 offerings…