I have been toying with the idea of a transitional backscene sky from the usual daylight blue to some raincloud and into evening. Has anyone ever done this?
It's quite tricky as jet black doesn't seem right. Then there are stars. Any thoughts?
for stars you can get some very cheap ear studs with cubic zirconia stones. pop them through the back cloth and you have stars! they can often be had for silly money in the pound shop. they also make very good headlights if you cant be bothered with LED's.
I think if you were going to realistically do a night scene you might like to think about side screens and a top sheet. so the layout is effectivly a 5 sided box with the audience viewing it from the 6th side. (i think that makes sence!!)
well one way to do a star effect would be to get a hole load of fiber optic leads like in a 70s lamp and have them poking through the backscene or just take a pic of the night sky if your in oz then that should be easyer as you will have little or no light polution.
One of the layouts at Pecorama has a 24 lighting scheme. It's very effective. I think there is a German company that does a day / night lighting system for model railways but it isn't cheap. I think it might have been mentioned in a Nurnberg toy fair report?
You can buy "star light" lighting kits. They consist of bundles of optic fibre of differing lengths and a single light source. The idea is that you feed them through your false ceiling. These definitely are not cheap. Here's a link to a site selling them. I have the site bookmarked because I am thinking of installing a lighting track in the loft and this company has a fairly wide range.
Ironduke - I just tried your idea of black card with holes.
Some of my stars might be a bit big
but it was an interesting thing to do and I think it has real potential. All I did was shine a torch on it, so in this early effort I only have a small patch of stars, visible on the left side. Give me a longer piece of card and some more torches and I'll really have some fun. Dare I try for a moon?
I was very impressed a few weeks ago by the theatrical sky effects at the Classic FM Proms which were televised. The backdrop to the stage made a gradual transition from a very realistic blue sky with clouds through the evening to a dark night sky with stars all done by lighting as far as I could see.
But I digress. I just want to mention that you can buy fibre optic light guides from Maplins. They consist of 1mm strands in a black plastic sleeve. They cost about £1.00 per metre. You can also buy bright white LEDs which shine a tight blue/white beam of light. These can be mounted inside a short length metal or plastic tube and then several fibre optic light guides can be pushed in the other end and taped in. You can even arrange to have some twinkling lights as well if you know a bit about electronics. You don't need to spend all that much to have an LED lit sky.
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