Backscenes.

Discuss model railway topics and news that do not fit into other sections.
User avatar
Mountain
Posts: 4123
Joined: Mon Oct 24, 2016 3:43 pm
Location: Somewhere in Wales, UK.

Backscenes.

Postby Mountain » Tue Sep 04, 2018 8:07 pm

I have noticed that no matter how good ones layout is, they dont really come to life until one adds a backscenes, be it of just sky or a whole scenic painting of a landscape.
I've noticed that there are different ways to do this. One is to mount a backscenes level with the main board so it sits at 90° to the main board. Then one can also mount the backscenes slightly higher then the main board and make hedgerows and hills so that the backscene appears to be half hidden.
Then one can have the furthest edge of the board drop down and mount the backscene slightly lower then the main board for an interesting "Down below" look.

Then we come to the ways we can buy or make backscenes from painting our own to buying scenes we cut out and stick to sky paper like Brian Sheriff backscenes to backscenes like Peco which are ready made which copy old black and white scenes from very old books and added some colour to create lovely scenes, to enlarged photographs of an actual place.
No doubt we all have our own favourite ways to do things in this way.
The main reason to put this up it to show how a simple backscene can transform the look of a model railway and dare I say it, more then buying the best scenery money can buy. The art of matching the backscene to the layout is something that can make an average layout great.

I will add that the deeper (In other words the higher) the backscene is the better the effect will be, but obviously there are limits as a room height backscene will overpower the effect of a layout. I personally prefer about 18 inches or higher (2ft is ideal), as lower backscenes then this make the eye look too low to get a decent effect.

b308
Posts: 5002
Joined: Sat Apr 15, 2006 5:48 pm
Location: North Worcs

Re: Backscenes.

Postby b308 » Tue Sep 04, 2018 8:27 pm

I've seen layouts without them and they look fine, it just depends on the layout, my current one is designed to be viewed from three sides and the "backscene" on the other side is a large building! I've also seen layouts ruined by a bad or inappropriate backscene, same as a loco or coach ruined by a bad paint job.

With backscenes it's important to ensure that it matches the theme of the layout, so if your layout purports to be based in the mountains of Wales you shouldn't really have a backscene from Norfolk! That's the trouble with using RTR backscenes, they are, by definition, generic, so you have to pick the most appropriate. Many people don't. It's not just the hills or lack of that is the problem, most regions of the UK (and regions of other countries) have buildings that are specific to that area and are wrong if used elsewhere. I've seen Auhagen photo backscenes used to represent the UK even though the buildings are completely wrong! The best way is to visit the area your model is based on and take some panorama photos which can then be used which is what all my Czech layouts have.

Pete
Posts: 1223
Joined: Tue Aug 16, 2005 6:15 pm
Location: UK

Re: Backscenes.

Postby Pete » Tue Sep 04, 2018 8:32 pm

I painted one in the style of a 1950s railway poster, I blocked in the broad areas of colour based on photos from the actual scene. It worked quite nice, I used little tester pots of heritage paints to get the shades I needed. I've painted a few skys too, but never had much luck with buildings, but that's probably more to do with my artistic skills.

P.
It's the nature of evolution
The dinosaurs went to Hell

User avatar
luckymucklebackit
Posts: 3348
Joined: Mon Jul 18, 2011 7:05 am
Location: Troon - where the Duchesses went to die
Contact:

Re: Backscenes.

Postby luckymucklebackit » Tue Sep 04, 2018 9:00 pm

I have a mix of Brian Sherriff, Peco and some created from photographs, and you cannot beat the local photographs. I was fortunate in that I was able to get appropriate ones form some Websites about Glasgow in the 1960s, and some up-to-date ones of Edinburgh, but since the views have hardly changed form the a960s they fit in well.

Jim
This Signature Left Intentionally Blank, but since I have written this and I intended to do it, this Signature is intentionally not blank. Paradox or What?
My layout - Gateside and Northbridge
Image

User avatar
Lancastrian
Posts: 1474
Joined: Sat Mar 15, 2014 9:33 am
Location: Lancashire
Contact:

Re: Backscenes.

Postby Lancastrian » Tue Sep 04, 2018 9:19 pm

Originally I had cloud wallpaper (made for model layouts) as the back scene on my main OO/HOe layout, I have since removed it, fortunately the wallpaper that was under it still fits in well. My N and Z layouts I just have very light blue panels on the sides and back. I feel that this works well and fits in with the layouts.
My Web Site Links: FGO & Boats and Canals (Forum)

Dublo
Posts: 434
Joined: Wed Apr 25, 2018 9:54 am
Location: London

Re: Backscenes.

Postby Dublo » Wed Sep 05, 2018 6:00 am

I am using the Peco backscenes around the outside edge of my 11' x 6' layout. I would have preferred to have used Bilteezi scenes as they are more contemporary with the collection. However the time it would take to source enough of these would considerable. I think that the Peco scenes create the right kind of feel for what I am trying to achieve with my layout.

b308
Posts: 5002
Joined: Sat Apr 15, 2006 5:48 pm
Location: North Worcs

Re: Backscenes.

Postby b308 » Wed Sep 05, 2018 7:50 am

Peco now do some photo backscenes which are light years ahead of their old (1950s?) painted ones.

User avatar
Mountain
Posts: 4123
Joined: Mon Oct 24, 2016 3:43 pm
Location: Somewhere in Wales, UK.

Re: Backscenes.

Postby Mountain » Wed Sep 05, 2018 9:35 am

The old 1950's ones have much earlier origions then that. They were copied from encylopedia type books and were exact copies except they were made into backscenes. I dont know who origionally drew the scenes (I'd have to get all my mums books out to look) but somewhere in one of the old books we have from the early days of the last century (Or before) we have the books that Peco copied. I assume Peco had permission to copy them and I can't blame them as they are beautiful pictures of scenes.

User avatar
glencairn
Posts: 3487
Joined: Sat Aug 30, 2008 6:09 pm
Location: Both sides of the Border

Re: Backscenes.

Postby glencairn » Wed Sep 05, 2018 10:09 am

The backscenes on my layout are a mixture of all kinds. There are parts I have painted myself, parts that are from manufacturers and then there are pictures taken from magazines etc. Mix them up a little (or a lot in places) and hopefully success.

Glencairn
To the world you are someone. To someone you are their world.

Pete
Posts: 1223
Joined: Tue Aug 16, 2005 6:15 pm
Location: UK

Re: Backscenes.

Postby Pete » Wed Sep 05, 2018 11:27 am

Peco now do some photo backscenes which are light years ahead of their old (1950s?) painted ones.


The cars and vans look very late 50s/60s, the one with concrete high rises has a Mini in it. They look like old biscuit tins (the backdrops not the cars).



Pete
Last edited by Pete on Wed Sep 05, 2018 12:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.
It's the nature of evolution
The dinosaurs went to Hell

b308
Posts: 5002
Joined: Sat Apr 15, 2006 5:48 pm
Location: North Worcs

Re: Backscenes.

Postby b308 » Wed Sep 05, 2018 11:30 am

Yes, good point, there's a 1100 in one (same one as the Mini I think) which would date them to the early 60s.

b308
Posts: 5002
Joined: Sat Apr 15, 2006 5:48 pm
Location: North Worcs

Re: Backscenes.

Postby b308 » Wed Sep 05, 2018 11:32 am

Just had this back from Peco (I asked them!):

"Thank you for your email

The original series of PECO backscenes were designed and painted by staff in our Art Department here at PECO over a number of years starting over 50 years ago"

So early 60s was about right and they needed no permissions as they were their own paintings! That type of picture was common back then, the Ladybird books have a very similar style as have many other publications, etc..

User avatar
dubdee1000
Posts: 902
Joined: Mon Mar 31, 2008 9:59 pm
Location: cwm brynbuga

Re: Backscenes.

Postby dubdee1000 » Wed Sep 05, 2018 8:02 pm

I had a go at doing my own backscene but ended up buying one off eBay as I was never really happy with it. It worked out cheaper as well.

IMG_20180108_190310321_HDR-800x600.jpg

User avatar
Mountain
Posts: 4123
Joined: Mon Oct 24, 2016 3:43 pm
Location: Somewhere in Wales, UK.

Re: Backscenes.

Postby Mountain » Wed Sep 05, 2018 11:58 pm

Very nice it is too.
I had an interesting offer recently of a gentleman who is talented in an artistic way who could paint (Or help me paint) my backscenes. I'm not quite ready yet as I need to do some work to get the top boards ready to accept backscene boards, and to get some boards ready for the backscenes along with making ways to attach the backscenes to the layout. It will all be sorted when I'm ready.

User avatar
mkrob
Posts: 100
Joined: Mon Sep 08, 2014 10:54 pm
Location: Bletchley,Bucks

Re: Backscenes.

Postby mkrob » Tue Sep 11, 2018 1:09 pm

dubdee1000 wrote:I had a go at doing my own backscene but ended up buying one off eBay as I was never really happy with it. It worked out cheaper as well.

IMG_20180108_190310321_HDR-800x600.jpg


Could you please give us the web address of the ebay seller you bought your backscene from? It sounds good.The walling between your different levels, with the white weathering looks impressive. Is that scratch built?


Return to “General Model Railway Discussion / News”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: alex3410 and 4 guests