Dave Graffam Paper Model Terrain

Practical scenic backdrops for gaming table “Dead Zones”

Some of you may recall from an earlier post an early ‘test’ at creating a backdrop for one of my fantasy city terrain boards. Link to post.

Here is a pic.

Fantasy Town City Wargames terrain print your own battle maps
Started playing around with making a scenic backdrop. Getting there…

The effort composed simply of Photoshopping some matching Dave Graffam art with some perspective artwork found online in order to achieve a sense of continuation from the ‘playable’ board. As you can see from the photo this works quite well and deserved further exploration.

However, it did have one draw back – backdrop or not aside, when placing terrain against a ‘dead table end’ like this does create a lot of dead space around that set terrain (i.e. you have a full depth building jutting against a wall where only the frontage is going to be useful in game terms).

Model Railway enthusiasts conquered this issues aeons ago for the same reasons with ‘low relief’ terrain/models. In effect, cut the terrain in half.

So with that in mind, combining the previous efforts with Photoshop and slicing a number of pre-built Graffam models in half, I made a panel that both compliments the terrain on the board and still plays an active, yet less intrusive, part in the game space. Pretty pleased with the result.

Dave Graffam Paper Model Terrain Dave Graffam Paper Model Terrain Dave Graffam Paper Model Terrain Dave Graffam Paper Model Terrain Dave Graffam Paper Model Terrain Dave Graffam Paper Model TerrainNote: I hope it is clear that the above ‘table’ was only thrown together to illustrate the backdrop – it is missing various scatter terrain, vegetation and thought that would normally appear 😉

Another note: Ideally I would have treated the low relief backdrop as street sections to match up more with the main body of the table but what is not clear from my photos is that the backdrop is one complete panel (foamcore built as an upside down “T” to act as a stand) so the pavement area is also acting as the supporting base. The other side is currently blank and I plan on doing a country/landscape backdrop on there at some point.

I hope this fuels some thoughts.

—> EDIT 19 April 2017
As per comment/request below looking for access to some of the source files I butchered together to achieve the above. If you click in the image you should get the larger version for working with if you so choose.

6 thoughts on “Practical scenic backdrops for gaming table “Dead Zones””

  1. Hi, great post, thanks! I am just getting back into minis after a long hiatus. The thing I’m interested in is the original picture you used for the backdrop? Ive been poking around in all the regular haunts,(Google, Deviantart, Pinterest etc) but nothing seems quite right. Could you point me in th right direction? Cheers

    1. Hi Liam. It’s a bit of a collage made up in photoshop then printed out, cut out and positioned ‘strategically’ on a hand painted sky background. So no single image as such. I can dig out the images I used as sources for the street/skyline if that helps?

      1. If you could even point me to them on the internet, that’d be great, tineye.com would let me find additional versions…..

        If you could share that would be awesome!

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