The Unseen University

Discussion in 'Architecture Models' started by kenw, May 14, 2007.

  1. kenw

    kenw New Member

    The Unseen University Cut-out book
    ISBN 0385609442
    ISBN 9780385606448

    For anyone who is not a Terry Pratchett - Discworld fan, I should perhaps explain that the Unseen University is a fantasy place in a fantasy world.
    The book is in fact a card replica of a series of models carved by sculpter Bernard Pearson.
    Photographs of the originals can be seen at The Cunning Artificer's Discworld Emporium
    The card version is a beautiful collection of buildings, and before I had finished making it, it was decided it needed to be seen complete with gardens and the river etc.
    The problem was - we do not have the room to have it on display all the time, so it had to be a 'take-apart' model.
    (This, by the way, was my first piece of card modelling for decades! And my first attempt at landscape modelling!)

    The photographs attached show the finished base which measures 80 x 60 cm, and a few of the completed model. The scale is about 1:100.

  2. Lex

    Lex Dollmaker

    Wow, nice!!!
  3. eatcrow2

    eatcrow2 Member

    Wonderful!!!!!!! Amazing diorama work. I really like how all your materials look in scale with the buildings. Will be looking forward to seeing how the ABC village takes shape..
  4. Kaz

    Kaz Member

    This is superb, a river, too thick to swim in, but not thick enough to plough!
  5. Art Decko

    Art Decko Member

    Beautiful work! Nice colors and finishes, very realistic and appropriate for subject and scale. Bravo!
  6. Wow kenw that is fantastic! Very realistic water. The grass and trees really set it off as well. Truly a masterful job. Can't wait to see more of your work.
  7. Mark_1984

    Mark_1984 Guest

    Wow - really impressed by the water - a great diorama :)
  8. SCEtoAux

    SCEtoAux Member

    That's a really good looking display you have there. I have seen some others working on the UU. All of the models look good. Your base is one of the best looking ones so far.:)
  9. cgutzmer

    cgutzmer Guest

    You did an awesome job on that! You must be a model RR'er too :D thanks so much for the great pics.
  10. Clashster

    Clashster Member

  11. Chthulhu

    Chthulhu Member

    Ken, that is simply magnificent! I haven't done any sort of base layout for my build, mainly because I don't have any place to display it. :-/
  12. What an inspiring model! Card modelling is an excellent medium for buildings.The base really sets this model off. It would make for an excellent display in a bookshop or library. I did browse the book and it didn't feel it would be a good model but this shows otherwise. I shall have to get a copy. Could I hope for the Patricians Palace and grounds with B S Johnson's lake and ho-ho,? Pseudopolis yard?, the Alchemist Guild with easily blown off roof?

    My Ghiblis were raised on Discworld novels - you can only read so much Dr Suess. We now have an annual trip to see a local semi professional theatre group do a Discworld play. This year it's Carpe Jugulum with 3 excellent witches.
  13. RacerX

    RacerX Member

    Nice! I cant wait to make mine. I actualy got 2 copies of the book so i can keep one and make the other :)
  14. mike.stamper

    mike.stamper New Member

    I'm totally new to forums - or should that be fora ? so please bear with me 'till I find my feet!

    Ken, that's a great model of the UU. You may already know this, but the Terrry Prattchet people have their own forum and one of the trreads is.

    There are a few pictures of mine at

    One of the buildings is an extra - The Bridge of Sighs. I made this by copying various kit parts and resizing them to be in scale with the rest.
  15. rlwhitt

    rlwhitt Active Member

    OMG, this is just amazingly awesome! Are those bushes and trees made of paper? :)

  16. Stev0

    Stev0 Active Member

  17. mike.stamper

    mike.stamper New Member

    The Prague castle kit is a great leap forward from the original Albatross kit. I have not started on it yet but I would guess that the finished building will be over 6 feet (2M) long. Although I also get the impression that it comes in sections that do not need to be glued together. So storage may not be a problem.
  18. kronos

    kronos Member

    Speaking as a model railroader for the last 30+ years where realistic senery is a must I can say you can work on my layout any time this is amazing
  19. kenw

    kenw New Member

    I just wanted to say a very big thank-you to everyone for their kind comments. You made an old man very happy!

    rlwhitt - Sorry, but no, the bushes and trees are not made from paper. But that's an idea that could be developed - how about paper mache landscapes?

    cgutzmer - No, I never was a RR'er. This was in fact my first attempt at landscaping, and took longer than the buildings to complete!!
    Spent ages on the web researching, and chatting to the folks in my local RR'er shop. I had a small piece of board I used for experimenting on before taking the plunge.

    I know there are many people for which just the model on its own is enough, but I believe that architectural modellers can learn a lot from the RR'ers. Models look best when seen in a setting.

    Actually, there is still one thing sadly missing from my University model - people.
    Mind you, the Discworld inhabitants are a pretty weird bunch, so they would be difficult to find in this scale.

    But sadly, there is a general lack of figures of ordinary people from all time periods in some of the more popular scales we use. I know the market would not be big, but it would be nice if someone would help us out....
  20. mike.stamper

    mike.stamper New Member


    you can find figures in many scales at architectural model makers. They stock a wider range of figures than you will find at the RRers. The figures are generally white plastic and with you obvious abilities you can just paint them or change them with the addition of a tqo part resin.... I've forgotten the name for the moment, but plastic modellers use it for filling gaps etc. There is one range of figures that are "uncloathed" so you could make a wide rage of wizzards !

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