High-end 3D modeling, computer graphics and apps. Are physical scale models in set design needed anymore?

The answer is yes. Along other purposes, the tactile model is still the best hands-on tool for scenographer to provide a strong visual presentation of how the design will look like in its real size.

The Scale Model Course, held at Aalto Studios atelier, introduces the scale model as a scenographer’s tool for the artistic design and visualization process.

The main focus in the course is in practical work.

“The students will learn the basics of scale modeling by hands-on doing. Aalto Studios atelier is a fantastic facility for this kind of course. There’s plenty of space for everyone to work and painting and sawing facilities in the next room”, says the course teacher Sampo Pyhälä.

Even though the students are mainly building the models by hand, the course includes 3D printing. Pyhälä fixed some old printers at Aalto Studios FabLab and brought them to the atelier. He reminds though that 3D modeling isn’t replacing the physical modeling, rather they are complementary.

“3D modelling works great for getting measurements for example, but doesn’t allow expression the same way as a tactile model does. 3D printing is actually craft itself as it includes many stages that needs to be done by hand”, he says.