Operation Overlord – A 28mm WW2 Diorama (Part 5 – Base & Figures)

Patchy progress this week due to being told domestic projects take president!

Hopefully next week will see me almost there and I would like to get the whole thing completed before Christmas if possible.  I’m anticipating (like all of us I’m sure) that Santa will be bringing me lots of goodies that I will want to get on with instead!

I mentioned in Part 4 that the positioning of the buildings would require more work than I had originally planned to do in respect of rear gardens.  I decided each of the three buildings would require as a minimum a patio and some grass so I laid down some Milliput and rolled it with one of my textured Greenstuff rollers.  My next task was to fix the building in place but before I could do that I needed to pre-drill the base with the holes for the street lighting which would be installed.

Both the two undamaged buildings have lights in them so holes were also made for those light wires too.  I checked to see that they were working OK and then fixed the buildings into place.  Work then began on the rear gardens.

A textured finish using ground up plaster board was used to cover all the ground work not covered by the Milliput patio area.  Once dried the patio and ground work was given its first coat of paint.  I figured the two buildings adjoining would need a dividing line so I went for a wire fence made using twisted 0.5mm wire and drilled match sticks.  To draw attention to the rear of the buildings I thought I would need a center piece, something tall and decided on the obvious, a tree.  A couple of walls were also needed to close the rear gardens off at the sides where applicable.  These were done using plaster board which I carved to provide a weathered effect.


You may have also noticed in the pictures above that the chip board base has also been given an edged finish which I will stain in due course.

The next task was to lay down some static grass and to put the smaller branches on the tree using Sea Foam.  Once the glued Sea Foam had dried the tree was covered in a mix of general filler and water/PVA and allowed to dry.  It was then painted and the leaves applied in various colours using a strong hold hair spray.

I also added a small flower trough to the patio area.  In my bitz box I had some old Tamiya 1/32nd scale sand bags.  Painted and used upside down they worked just fine as a trough.


Sea  Foam also works very well for making shrubs and climbing plants so I added a creeper to the outside wall of the Brasserie.


Next up was adding the street lighting.  Each light was tested to check that it worked but the proper wiring would be done later.

Finding lights on Ebay was easy enough but getting the right height and style was a little more difficult.  Getting English Victorian street lamps wasn’t a problem but I wanted something which I felt had a little more of a French feel and in the end I managed to find the ones you see in the photo’s below.  I reckon they look OK but just need to keep my fingers crossed that they all work once wired up.  They came from China and only costs a couple of pounds so I’m not getting carried away with the quality of them but as long as they look the part.


Next up was the fountain.  I’ve mentioned before that I’m not a big fan of the finish you get with MDF even when painted, owes more to my ability to paint it as much as anything else but I didn’t have many options in this instance.  For colour I added some red plants to break up the dull ground work.

Something still didn’t quite look right and I figured it was that the fountain wasn’t working.  In an effort to improve things I used some wire and water effects to try to simulate the fountain in use.  I’m not entirely sure that it looks that great but it might look a bit better once its fully dried and highlighted.  We will have to wait and see but for now its what it is.


The next job was to start adding the debris from the damaged building.  Now before I assembled the original building I made an outline of the damaged sections so I could get a feel for how much actual debris there would be.  It didn’t need to be precise but I didn’t want to go completely overboard either.  The debris needed to be added a reasonable amount at a time and allowed to dry.

It isn’t clear from the photo’s I’ve taken but some of the debris had wall paper added to it to match that inside the building to help keep the thing looking reasonably authentic.  Wood was also needed in the debris and of course a fare few roof tile as well!


During the piece meal process I got a couple more figures painted although the photo’s below leave a lot to be desired.  In too much of a hurry to get this post out, sorry!


Not entirely sure where I go from here, need to sit down and reflect fully on where I am.  Off the top of my head I need to complete the remaining couple of figures, wire up the lighting, finish off the rear gardens, get the figures in situ, stain the edge and take some decent photo’s if I can.  Doesn’t sound quite so bad now I come to think about it.  Never know I might even get it finished for next week!


28 thoughts on “Operation Overlord – A 28mm WW2 Diorama (Part 5 – Base & Figures)

  1. It’s a good job I don’t swear much or I’d be saying that all looks bloody impressive! Really does! Tree, fence, walls, fountain etc. all brilliant! Clever idea working out what’s no longer there in the damaged building and adding it as debris! I’d call that a cunning plan!

    Liked by 2 people

      1. Oh yea? I’m really great at reading manuals before I jump into things too. Nope, never just dove right in head first on anything. Never mind the bumps on my head….

        Liked by 1 person

      1. I have checked it out mate and it looks really interesting ,I’m going to see if I can get some seed and grow it , have to check out the legal side first as Auss is really big on importing dangerous plants ,but we will see ,cheers cobber and thanks for the info !.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. How many more times can I say “Amazing!” on these posts?! Amazing, man, A-MAZING!

    Love the work you’ve done here, and it’s shaping up super nice. The back lots are great. My mind was blown that you drilled itty-bitty holes into matchsticks to make a wire fence. That’s a trip! It looks so good though.

    The main pic of the fountains a bit blurry. It looks better in the other photos though. I think I would have been inclined to skip the water and fill it with leaves. An ominous Autumn. Though it looks like your scene is probably set in mid-late Summer? So that likely doesn’t work.

    The debris work looks spot on. Keep going, you’re almost there!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Very kind of you to say so mate, much appreciated. The fountain idea with leaves is a good one but as D-Day was the 6th June I can’t get away with that one on this occasion, next time maybe. There are a few things I’m not entirely happy with and the fountain is one of them. If I could get my head around how else to achieve what I’m looking for then so much the better but I might have to go with what I have done for now and perhaps revisit it in the future if and when I have a light bulb moment. Hopefully this Saturday I’ll get to post the final article on this one, if I do then I’d be very interest to know what you think.

      Liked by 2 people

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