Hey all, 

I thought I'd show you a short example of the early stages of making a video, a behind the scenes look at how I go from nothing to having a finished video.

What I'm showing you here is basically the first step.... Notes!

Not all videos start out this way and certainly not all of my notes are as organised  as these notes! The video I'm working on now started as one video but during the process of taking notes I've found another opportunity for a video which happens quite a lot!

So here are the notes for the next video: 

Road crossing train tracks:


Woodland scenics -         wooden level crossing
                                                     Smooth-it and asphalt paint                                                     Road marking pen? Maybe airbrush lines using Tamiya                                                                   masking tape and white

Liquitex neutral gray spray paint to add surface texture.

Crossing signs using my method with a coke can. Experiment with printing on white tissue paper, spray front side of can with white then stick the sign on the white side of the can. Or just use the thin photo paper.

Use the WS gravel to add shoulders.

Add static grass and other scenery as usual.

Avoid having a steep embankment where the road leads up to the track, build up the road so it’s level with the height of the rails long before the road meets the actual track.

Try making typical Australian gum trees using WS deciduous tree armatures sprayed with the liquitex neutral grey spray paint over a burnt umber undercoat. (Possibly a separate video)

(Photo above was pasted here in the original notes which you view as a PDF in the attachments just under the image of the photo)

Previous examples of gum tree made with WS tree armature then sprayed with satin white primer (Ruetoleum), leaves are WS fine leaf foliage – Olive green. Note: Some branches removed to thin out the overall branch structure, mold injection marks and trimmed branches were not either removed or blended in to look natural… A must do in the video.

Branches fixed in place with super glue gel.

Using gel was not efficient (time consuming as I needed to hold the branch in position for a good 30 seconds while the glue set and even then some would fall away if I moved). Experiment by lightly applying tacky glue to the tips of each branch (Try WS Hob-e-tac glue first?) then once tacky stick the fine leaf foliage in place then as a back up to add additional strength and prevent branches falling away in hot and humid conditions lightly apply super glue on each branch.

Downside to using Hob-e-tac glue alone is in areas where a large temperature change or humid conditions are experienced the glue has a tendency to let go and loose its strength resulting in branches falling away…. Especially the fine leaf foliage.

Make separate gum
tree video.


Big enough to have a short locomotive run through the scene with a car stopped at the crossing.

Approx the size of A3 paper – 300mm by 400mm with extensions on each side to add additional lengths of track.


Loosely based on an Australian scene with white gum trees. I might try make a small mold of a koala and a kangaroo using modelling clay?

Most likely Victorian scene.


A combination of stop motion and normal film.

Stop Motion - Car drives up to crossing and stops.

Film – Train moving past car running along the tracks.

Film in natural sunlight, try find good location? Somewhere near Mount Pleasant, light rolling hills and open farmland.

May need an adapter to power the NCE cab from the car in order to run the locomotive? 12volts. 

Consider filming an intro similar the rock molds intro, or incorporate on screen dialogue throughout the video? On screen dialog… possibly talk about road markings for crossings that do not have automatic boom gates, also typical signs and distances the signs are from the road and railway track.

These notes will slightly change and grow over the next week or so as I continue to brainstorm and draw ideas. But that is a quick look into how most of my videos start.

Tier Benefits
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