December 2016 Site Update and More

Time for the semi-annual update to! We have a bounty of riches to share from what we’ve collected over the last few months, as well as exciting new work that was shown at the MMSI Chicago show in October and the MFCA show in Valley Forge last Spring. To start, we have the newest projects from this site’s editors and founders: two new boxes by Jim DeRogatis, with accompanying articles on the construction of each linked from the artist’s page; two new boxes by Barry Biediger, and the newest project by Darryl Audette, which also features a closer look linked from the artist’s page.

Next, we have a small but striking box from master modelers Dennis Levy and Anders Heintz, “The Dawn of Independence,” which they generously built as a donation for the World Expo Figure Auction. We’ve also added a new photo by Penny Meyer of Dennis’ classic box “Du Haut de ces Pyramides: Forty Centuries Look Down Upon Me.” And (drum roll, please!), another master of the form, Nick Infield, has not only shared photos of his latest box, “He Swims Among Us,” but contributed a fantastic step-by-step (or maybe stroke-by-stroke) article on its construction, linked from his artist’s page, or accessible via our Features Articles page.

Artists new to the site include José María Bolio; Dave Reynolds, and Ricardo Ruiz Gomez; be sure to check out their work!

Quite a few boxes have been added to the Various Artists’ New Work page, including pieces by Greek modeler Vasilis Triantafyllou, a fantasy box by Japanese modeler Mitsuo Kure done as an homage to Shep Paine and Frank Frazetta, and two pieces by junior modeler Mike McFadden. We’ve also added some shots of “Kingfisher Morning,” a charming box by dollhouse miniaturists Sans Robinson (a.k.a. Rosie Duck Designs) to the Various Artists/Older Work page.

Bob Sarnowski took a fantastic new photo of John Long’s box “Meanwhile Up the Street” at the Chicago show, and we’ve added that to John’s page about the making of that box. John Reid has a new box diorama, “Keepers of the Flame, 1918-1929,” and we’ve added some more links to sites on the Web sure to be of interest on our Links Page.

Finally, below you’ll find some links to stories of interest to followers of this site on the Web. And, if you haven’t heard, expert box diorama builders Dennis Levy and Nick Infield will be hosting a seminar on this art form as part of World Expo Chicago 2017 in July. We hope you’ll register for their talk here, and come and show your work at the fabulous Downton Chicago Hilton from July 7-9; be sure to explore the World Expo Web site for all the details. Meanwhile, happy holidays, and keep modeling!

I Built A Miniature 1900s Photo Studio In Honor Of An Old Photographer By Alamedy Diorama



January, 2016

It’s a New Year, and there are some new additions to! First up, from the editors of the site on their gallery pages: as seen at the MMSI Chicago Show in October 2015, “20,000 Leagues Under the Sea,” the latest by yours truly, with accompanying step-by-step article, and “Thursday Evening,” the new one by Barry Biediger, which also has an accompanying article. And Darryl Audette has a new theater set, Shakespeare’s “Twelfth Night,” featured on his gallery page, as well as on a new Web site of his own featuring all of his work.

Also seen at the Chicago show was Brian Duddy’s TV-box diorama “Kelly’s Heroes” (now featured on the Various Artists Newer Work page), and John Schley traveled all the way from Ireland to display two of the pieces featured on his gallery page, “A Fallen Empire” and “Some Had Nightmares.” We are happy to have several new gallery pages for artists who submitted their work or who we discovered on the Web: Anders Runnholm is a Swedish artist who does 1/35th-scale model railroad scenes as box dioramas; Mitsuo Kure is a miniaturist based in Tokyo who was inspired to try his hand at box dioramas by Shep Paine; Alan Wolfson did (and perhaps still does) amazing scenes of vintage New York street life, and the French artist Ronan-Jim Sevellec captured Bohemian Paris interiors in miniature. Finally, also on the archival tip, we have added images of a piece by Glynn Porteous that we hadn’t seen before to the Various Artists’ Older Work page, in addition to creating a veteran artist Gallery Page for Glenn Cunningham, who created several box dioramas of the Life of Christ for a museum in Florida.

As always, we appreciate your contributions, whether you’re sending us your own work or links to things you think would be of interest to builders and fans of box dioramas. Give a shout! And meanwhile, all the best in 2016.

June, 2015

In addition to a stellar new design for the site (thank you, Kyle Hale!) and a new Web host (thanks,!), we have a bevy of additions and updates to announce, starting with the latest box diorama from this site's Webmaster, Jim DeRogatis: "Harsh Awakening: Moscow, 1812," which has been added to my gallery page. You also can find a step-by-step feature article here

Next, we have added a new artist's gallery page for Scotte "Bricks" Turner from the D.C. area; he's a tattoo artist as well as a miniaturist, if any of you want to get some ink! Another new gallery page highlights the work of Japanese modeler Masahiro Fukaya; Shep Paine brought him to our attention--"We don't see many World War II boxes, or boxes from Japan, so I thought these might be of interest for the box diorama website," Shep noted--and, as usual, he was right. We'd love to hear more from Masahiro, if he sees this or if anyone knows him. Other boxes seen at recent shows include a beautifully displayed mini-box of the Hunchback of Notre Dame by Ken Hunt from MFCA 2015 and "Jesus and the Demon Possessed Man" by Andy Axtell, seen at the Tulsa show in 2015; both of these can be found on the Various Artists Newer Work page.

We have created a dedicated video page and added three new videos: "Dioramas from the Museum of Natural History, New York," "A Tribute to Shepard Paine," and "No Small Feat: Reimagining Howard Pyle's Work," all of which we think will be of interest to box diorama enthusiasts. These join the video we've had up for some time, "Fostering Creativity in the Hobby," a great panel discussion moderated by me and featuring Joe Berton, Fletcher Clement, and Shep Paine.

Finally, an the archival tip, our friend Joe Berton found a fascinating book about a series of 20 Lincoln box dioramas once on display at the Chicago Historical Society. The book came with full-page images of 14 of those boxes--we've scanned them and given them a gallery page here--and Joe is on the trail for more, including the boxes' current whereabouts, so stay tuned!

As always, we welcome your feedback and input. Send us your work!

January, 2015

January, 2015: Happy New Year, and welcome to a massive update of new material on this site! Starting off, we have several new box dioramas seen at the MMSI Chicago Show in October 2014: “Cave of the Storm Nymphs” (see Web site editor Jim DeRogatis’s gallery page as well as his step-by-step article); “Box #3” (see co-editor Barry Biediger’s gallery page as well as his step-by-step article), and “The Birth of the Hunley” by a modeler new to this site, Paul Burgess, who now has a fresh gallery page.
Jim also showed his diorama “Il Cenacolo” in Chicago, and subsequently added to the step-by-step article for that piece based on questions from other modelers. Still busy returning to school to study theater design, our site’s other co-editor Darryl Audette has completed several ¼”-scale models for his classes, all very much of interest to box diorama builders, and those have been added to his gallery page. Darryl also took the time out from his studies to write a making-of article on one of those projects, a tribute to Andy Warhol.

Next up, John Long has a new box to show, and he’s given us a short step-by-step on its creation; as promised during the last update in August 2014, we’ve collected some great pictures of the boxes built by Markus Eckmann of Scorpio Models (be sure to see his gallery page and his great step-by-step for “A Night at the Scriptorium” ); we have a new gallery page for New York artist Michael Scarborough, and Jack Lynch has finished reworking his diorama “The Homecoming,” which can be seen on his gallery page.

As part of a big project (more on that in a second), we’ve also added a lot of new images to the Various Artists, Newer Work page and the Various Artists, Older Work page, so be sure to check those out, too.
Several veteran modelers also have gotten expanded galleries; these include Dwight Franklin, Lewis Pruneau, Spencer Van Gulick, and Philip O. Stearns. These pages were created because we spent a lot of time over the holidays scanning in literally hundreds of images and articles from the entire run of back issues for Campaigns magazine, as well as many file copies of older issues of Military Modelling, Figurines, and Historical Miniatures, along with a few other stray periodicals and some out-of-print books. Be sure to visit the articles page to finds this treasure-trove of new (old) material!
Finally, we’ve responded to a couple of new questions on our comments page, and we always welcome more, in addition to including your work, or happily accepting other older articles or images about box dioramas that we have not yet found and scanned to include on this site. We aim to make this the ultimate resource for box diorama builders and enthusiasts, and we need your help to make that happen!
Until next time, happy modeling, and enjoy the site!—Jim, Barry, and Darryl, your faithful editors of BOXDIORAMAS.COM

August, 2014

August, 2014: Finally catching up on box diorama news from the MFCA show in Valley Forge last May and the World Expo in Stresa last July, we have added several pictures of new boxes seen at both events to the Various artists, Newer Work section of the Artists Galleries page. While boxes were not as plentiful at either event as at they were at the last MMSI show, it was still great to see them represented. Here are a few additional photos of the boxes at Stresa, including several featuring small-scale fantasy figures on display at the Scorpio Models booth (we hopefully will feature more on these soon). 

I was proud to have my “Il Cenacolo” share space beside John Schley’s two boxes, which are featured on his gallery page—he won a silver medal for “Nein,” his sniper scene, and the special Andrea Miniatures prize for “A Fallen Empire,” featuring Napoleon in his carriage after Waterloo.

One of the most satisfying feelings for an artist is to watch people enjoying his or her work. Here is an Italian family that seemed fascinated by “Il Cenacolo,” as well as a group of nuns who I caught a little too late, two seconds after they all had been oohing and ahhing over the scene for several minutes.

Finally, here are shots of Barry Biediger by his gold-medal-winning box and the two of us, your faithful Web site admins, hamming it up in sunny Italy. Darryl (admin number three!), we wish you could have been there!