Faux Tree for Stage

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Introduction: Faux Tree for Stage

About: I'm into anything creative. I perform in a touring, singing and dancing group called The New Dawn Singers and also performed in the parades and shows at Walt Disney World. In the performing group, I'm in charg…

This is a simple method to create a realistic looking tree for any stage or theatrical production with easy to find products and it's very cheap to make, too. :)

Step 1: Base and Structure

I started by screwing some scrap wood strips in a tree-like form. This doesn't need to be pretty, but it should be strong. It's going to hold the rest of the pieces. I put a three legged base on the bottom so it didn't lean or fall over and also screwed it into the wooden platform as well.

Next, I ripped up some old cardboard boxes and rolled them so that it took the curved form needed. I pieced it up the trunk of the tree and stapled it to the wood from behind with a staple gun. Anything that was uneven or odd looking, I covered in duct tape to smooth it out and make it stay together as well.

Step 2: Texture

Next, I ripped up some shipping foam that I got in the mail from a package. It was all recycled material. I ripped it in rough strips and stapled it to the cardboard. Then I used "great stuff" spray foam from Walmart to create new strips up and in between the thicker strips. It takes a little bit to dry, but once it's done, you're ready to add the paper mache.

I used brown packing paper. You can buy it in rolls at walmart. Mix up some flour, water, and glue, dip the paper in and then flatten it against the texture on the tree. Go all the way up until the whole tree is covered. Then let it dry. (a fan helps)

Step 3: Final Stage

After the paper is dry, paint it however you want. I darkened the lower levels and dry brushed the higher texture with a lighter color brown. I added some green grass that we had already and next I have to get some leaves, but it's mostly done. If you add some side lighting, it looks pretty cool.

The whole project took about 2 days to finish, but it's not difficult. Good luck!

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    5 Comments

    0
    zemerdon
    zemerdon

    4 months ago

    Just found this absolute GEM of a howto. Can't wait to get started.

    Thank you so much for sharing your knowledge as i have been looking at pre-mades which are ridiculously priced. This will be a floor to ceiling decoration for my childs bedroom following a fantasy forestry theme.

    1
    Joshblake
    Joshblake

    Reply 4 months ago

    Awesome! I hope it works out well for you! You might need to do a couple layers of the paper mache. The places I only had one layer were easily punctured. I think a couple layers would do better for a more permanent item. :)

    0
    zemerdon
    zemerdon

    Reply 4 months ago

    Thank you for the wonderful advice.

    1
    Penolopy Bulnick
    Penolopy Bulnick

    3 years ago

    I think it looks pretty realistic! Nice job :)

    1
    Joshblake
    Joshblake

    Reply 3 years ago

    Thank you! :)