Realistic Layouts: Use the Art of Illusion to Model Like a Pro

C.J. Riley
Item #12828

Capture the feeling of the real world in miniature with Realistic Layouts. This book will help you refine many areas of your layout, covering topics such as scenic elements, structures and the aesthetic of the overall environment.
has been added to your cart.
An unexpected error has occurred and we are unable to process your request at this time.
Do you want to take your modeling to the next level? With Realistic Layouts you'll learn how to blend various elements so they all work together to create a feeling that your models are part of - and connected to - the real world.

This book features:

  • How to apply different techniques and ideas to your layout in order to improve realism.
  • Many techniques including creating realistic backdrops and blending them with scenery, integration of structures, using bridges to suggest changes in elevation, using mirrors to expand apparent space, and much more.
  • Outstanding model railroad photography and a variety of layouts.
Author: C.J. Riley
Size: 8.25 x 10.75
Pages: 96
Author Bio
C.J. Riley is a long-time model railroader. He has had several published articles and he is a regular speaker/presenter at National Model Railroad Association conventions. He is best known as the builder of the HO scale Kanawha & Western Allegheny layout.
Table of Contents
Foreword and Introduction

Chapter 1 - Planning a realistic model railroad
Chapter 2 - Secrets to life-like backdrops
Chapter 3 - Planning realistic scenery
Chapter 4 - Mirrors for illusion
Chapter 5 - Installing accurate bridges
Chapter 6 - Modeling structures
Chapter 7 - Weathering
Chapter 8 - The importance of color
Chapter 9 - Names and signs
Chapter 10 - Setting the mood

There are so many aspects to consider before constructing a model railroad layout, and who thinks of them all before wanting to charge in and start? With C.J. Riley's Realistic Layouts, model railroaders can gain an in-depth idea of what to look for prior to starting. As an example, what era will you be modeling, and will you be modeling a prototype railroad or a freelanced line, how about modeling streams, rivers and trees, what about scenery in general, as well as backdrops, bridges and lighting considerations, and how prototypical do you want your new layout to be?

These, and many more considerations are necessary to consider before building the right layout for you. In eight chapters, author Riley helps modelers define what their ideal railroad world should look like, prior to nailing that first board together. After digesting all 94 pages of comprehensive text and numerous, helpful color and black and white photos, readers will feel like they’ve investigated most, if not all, avenues to building their dream layout.

Author Riley talks about the “magical sense of rightness and the ability to capture the feeling of a real railroad or scene.” The precursor to that is contained in this book's 10 thorough chapters that cover prototype and freelance railroads, secrets to constructing life-like backdrops, creating realistic, believable scenery, discovering how mirrors can magically enlarge a layout, and modeling bridges the prototype way. Additionally, there are useful tips on structure building, weathering cars, locos and structures, a discussion of how color plays a part in a layout, how location names and signage add distinction to a model scene and setting the mood and time period for a layout.

Reading this book prior to building a layout, or even after it’s finished, will undoubtedly greatly enhance, or further enhance, what a modeler wants to build or has already constructed and wants to improve upon. 

Don Heimburger

Heimburger House Publishing Co.

Classic Toy Trains Classic Trains Finescale Modeler Garden Railways Model Railroader Trains Magazine Kalmbach Books