Introduction: Simulated 3D Panel for Film Set

How to fake 3D or depth on a flat panel (Or at least how I did) Please check out the short film we made "Planet Hades" That's me as the captain (lol) This film used with the permission of Mark Holmberg - check out his other movies on his Vimeo page. Thanks

Step 1: Design Your Ship Parts

i make small film with some friends and wanted to make a fake space ship set. Check out the video where some of my other set panels were used. I didn't want to just have generic flat walls so I made an assortment of panels to fake the interior guts of a ship. This Instructable is about making a 2D surface appear 3D. This panel is part of a much larger set. It is meant to be used at the bottom and is barely on camera, that way it looks a lot more real. I will make another instrucatble about the other parts. This one is seperate because its about faking 3D on a 2D surface. If you can just suggest the depth it goes a long way on film. I started with a 1/4" piece of plywood and painted it silver with spray paint.

Step 2: Make a Template

It helps to make a template, if you're not doing much you might just use tape and some newspaper, but I wanted to make a bunch of panels throughout a ship. The design is supposed to look like a congregated surface for rigidity or a vent. That's what I love about space ship set building, anything that looks cool is what you get to make. With the template made it was easy to mark out where to place it on the board and then you spray and move the template and repeat as many times as you want. The template is a scrap piece of 1/4" plywood. I spray along two sides to make it look like a shadow, you just need to imagine where the light is coming from. You might go around the house or outside and look at how shadows look for inspiration.

Step 3: Add Lines to Imply Other Surfaces

I thought it didn't look complete so I added a sharp line to the other two sides opposite of the shadow lines. I did this with a square and a sharpie. Since my template was a trapaziod I used it as a straight edge for one line, moved it and drew the second. You might opt to make another template, or use another grey color and spray the second shadow that way. As long as it works, you're doing right.

Step 4: You Got a Lot of Carbon Scoring Here...

Next I added smudges to distress the panel and give it that lived in feel. I used some activated carbon powder my friend uses as a mouth wash (Hippy remedy), first I spritzed the panel with water then I applied the powder here and there and smudged it back and forth.

Step 5: Add Blocks to the Back

Im sorry I don't have pics of this, I added wood blocks that I had run through my table saw at an angle. The purpose was to mount the panel to the upper panels, that way the panels I had just made came out from the wall and gave a ships hull appearance. The upper panels were made with the same angled blocking so they return outward from above. I'll try and add a shot of the assembled parts in the next tutorial.