I continue to plan and plot the eventual combining of my OLD TOWN and DOWNTOWN sections with a span of transition between the two and various industries throughout the set. It's a fun distraction during the day. :) I keep drawing things up and looking items up on the internet - fueling the fire that boils inside me to make this happen one day.
Currently, I have two distinct sections - Old Town at home on two dressers and Downtown at work on a utility table I have set up in my office. As I've said before, I eventually want to combine the two into one large layout. The dream.
I have the basic feel of the two sections in mind as follows.
Old Town is a tourist spot, really. People would come there to visit and sample a little Asuka and Nara Japanese architecture, food and entertainments. Ideal for families, Old Town will be a lush, open space with lots of trees and fresh air.
Downtown is a business filled, busy space with many tall buildings and lots of people and things packed into the space. (This will take a LOT of time to build out - ideal for a small layout) I'm basing it on the space and layout of Tokyo - compact and filled. This will provide a lot of visual eye candy as we see people going about their busy, City lifestyles. I really need a little more height and variance along with more small details. And, of course, lighting - something I'm both excited by and terrified of getting involved in! :)
The Transition between the two areas will be open space with some detail and industries. The main one will be an open water area that will have either fishing or some port activities going on. The fishing seems easier and more in line with the feel of the layout, so that's where I'm leaning. Though, I love the idea of doing something like this found on QUINNTOPIA's blog. I love the feel of the large ship in the scene. Small details and "action" spots will make the area pop, I believe.
I want to have some sort of background element wall mural - maybe with lights as well for cool, night time viewing - and a hill area about the Old Town section with some residential areas overlooking the valley that Old Town lives in. Just a hint of some residential settlement over the hills.
I'm a structure guy and the trains are almost secondary. I love to see them rolling around, but my Portram broke a while back and I've yet to fix it. It's been months. But, it sits there next to a dummy tram - a dead prop - and that seems to work for me. I want to have a fun, older tram rolling from Old Town to Downtown, but also want a modern JR train rolling along the outside. The JR will be underground Downtown and above ground around Old Town. (Different from what's pictured above.) I think it makes more sense to have it underground in the City, but seeing photos of Japan, this is still TBD.
For now, I continue to detail out what I have, work on small non-Japanese modules for fun, and to plan for a bright future in the hobby.
My lovely wife has a vision that I hold dear. I may have mentioned it already. She says she had this vision of us eventually owning a home with a small bar structure in back. People would come to the door as she's playing with the kids (or grand kids at this rate :) ) and ask for me. She points around the side of the house and says, "He's out back in the barn. Go on around." There in the barn is some wild, N scale masterpiece that people come from miles away to look at. I'm there working and welcome them in to take a look around and ask questions or take photos.
I love that vision. :)
|OLD TOWN look and feel|
|OLD TOWN look and feel. Many plants and trees|
|DOWNTOWN look and feel. Compact and hyper detailed|
Comments, questions and suggestions welcome, as always!