Friday, June 24, 2011

Friday Favorites

Generally speaking, I am not a fan of dioramas.  They are big and bulky and as often as not, they detract rather than add to a performance entry.

I am, however, a huge fan of Kim and Kathi Haymond so it's should come as no surprise that their "Midwest Fishing Pond" is my second entry in the Friday Favorite file.

This thing is amazing from every angle!
Kim writes: This was a commission, and the customer wanted quite a bit of water for an upper Midwest style fishing pond. She provided us with this great custom made plexi tray, and we went to town. 
 Since the customer is a very competitive performance shower, we wanted to give her as much space and versatility as possible for her horses while still having lots of interesting details and a finished looking diorama. 
There are lots of removable elements included, so she can customize the scene to exactly what she wants. 
The diorama is the full 18x30" allowed at NAN and with 2" deep water, it's a beast!
We worked out a new technique for the water lilies, and I'm very pleased with how they turned out.
Dragonflies! Five of them ended up on the diorama, including one that is 'flying.'
Yes, the dragonflies are handmade. There are four different types but I'm pretty sure in that scale that I'm the only one who would know there is a difference in the wings!
If you're interested in learning to build a diorama, Kim offers these words of advice:  An idea for getting started might be the little mini diorama kits that Woodland Scenics makes. I've seen them at both Hobby Lobby and Michaels and of course you can get them online. I've not tried one out myself, but since Woodland Scenics has repackaged their products into these kits it seems like a neat way to get some instructions, a wide variety of scenery material, and a finished base all in one shot at a pretty decent price (especially with a coupon). Woodland Scenics calls them SceneARama and there are some pretty neat ideas, including mountains, a river, and a desert.  Also, if you two attend BreyerFest, we taught a diorama workshop last year and hopefully will again in the future. 
The lucky new owner of this diorama is a friend of mine, so I am looking forward to seeing lots of pictures of it in the showring!
If you'd like to see more of Kim and Kathi's work, please visit their website and Webshots albums.  You can also join their Yahoo list for information about commission opportunities.


  1. I like dioramas almost more than the horses! :-)

  2. O____O

    I personally LOVE dioramas, but only if they're well done - as you say, more often than not they detract from the horse if they have little work put into them.

  3. That is one diorama I'd own. Otherwise, they take up waaaaay too much room in the car and are too fragile for serious showing IMO.

  4. Thanks for featuring our work, Jen, and thank you for such nice compliments! This diorama was really a lot of fun to do, and it's been great to see all of the ways its owner uses it!

    Teresa, I hear you on the concerns about transport and fragility. Since I performance show too, we definitely focus on making things as tough as possible so it can hold up for years without problems. I've been using some of the same dioramas for five or six years with little to no touchups. Also,every dio we make has a custom fitted heavy cardboard box so they don't take up more room than necessary in the car and to help protect them when stored or in transport.