IntroductionA couple of weeks ago, at Salute 2014, I bought a couple of bits of terrain from a company called Amera Plastic Mouldings. They make vacuum-formed pieces and while this technique limits the sharpness of detail that can be achieved, their terrain is incredibly cheap. I've had my eye on them for some while - the long-defunct Bellona range of vac-formed terrain is a very fond memory of my childhood - but until now I'd not bought any of Amera's product.
Of the 2 pieces I purchased at Salute, I've now finished one. I have special plans for the other (F218 Temple Ruins); it won't be finished as a temple if my ideas work out - but that's for the future. For now, here is a description of the model that I have completed.
So, my amphitheatre is going to be a small, provincial affair rather than one associated with a busy city. However, it has a wealthy patron, so the orchestra will be paved with marble rather than just packed dirt. This is really just an excuse for me to try out a circle-cutter that I got for Christmas (from a pound shop or similar "bargain" store, so not a very expensive tool at all!).
I also cut out a slightly larger ring from plain plasticard, to be used as a border. I used a triangular file to mark out the stones on it by cutting a slight groove every 1cm or thereabouts.
I also took the opportunity to shape the rim around the bottom, thus removing any straight lines. It's my opinion (not backed up by any science of which I'm aware!) that straight lines draw the eye more than gently-curved ones. My intention is for the base to blend in with the table a bit better. I really don't know if this works or not, but there we are. Hmm.
Actually, I did consider removing the base rim completely, but I decided that it probably added some structural strength. I also thought of packing the reverse side to enable the model to take heavy figures. However, it's made from quite thick plastic as it is and barely flexes when I press down in the centre of the orchestra. In the end, I decided that such reinforcement wasn't needed.
The End ResultJason and the Argonauts" project; I don't think that the skeleton warriors summoned by the evil King Aeëtes are part of the show at all!
The cost of the amphitheatre is a mere £3.50 (plus a little for the materials I've used on the model). I'm very happy with the way it has turned out and I can certainly see myself buying more products from Amera in the future. Now I've just got to work out how to store this piece...