The D&D Playable Wall Art Project


There are multiple locations in a D&D campaign which players visit, and might like to see actualized, but which only sometimes have meaningful consequences in and of themselves.

In other words - these are places characters go where nothing happens:  Market, Temple, Campsite, and Tavern.  Exempting an impromptu bar fight, midnight ambush, or sticky-fingered thievery, there's usually no reason to represent these places in-game. 

However – these places are also cool, and iconic to the D&D experience – resurrecting a dead ally, buying a new sword, and chatting up locals all conjure up vivid imagery which lends itself well to model making.

Consequently, I made these four dioramas in the spring of 2021. They represent the four locations above, all in 25mm scale, and built inside hanging picture frames. When they’re not in-play, they are thematic wall art suited for my “someday” game room.

BUILD NOTES: Huge learning experience, which means it was *difficult*. Mostly just fiddly. The ground for the campsite and market are just spackle and sand / gravel. The temple and tavern are textured insulation foam. Walls for the temple are insulation foam, and walls for the tavern are foamcore. Most furniture (etc) is 3D printed & purchased online.

The whole thing, though laborious, was really fun and in particular I had a lot of fun making the tiny scale paintings for the tavern and the temple. These are basically 25mm scale works of “art” (*cough*) and my favorites are probably the luminist painting at the back of the temple and the tiny microscopic “Death Dealer” in the tavern.

Other touches: the temple is dedicated to the god “GYGAX” which of course. The tavern has several gaming group in-jokes – there’s a warning against extending credit to “Wulfgard Bludwyne,” my recurring Dwarf character, and a portrait of my bard Miriana Cooperson, as well as the tattered banner of her vanquished foe, Meiercuse Stonebreaker.

Again, tons of work, but also tons of fun. I’d recommend this to any hobbiest, and I’m happy to compare notes!