Plaster Model

I created this plaster model to inspire and investigate new landform typologies during a second semester studio project.  It is the only plaster model I have made thus far, but it was very helpful and I will likely make more for future projects.

Work by Thomas Grant MacDonald | 2013 | All rights reserved

Work by Thomas Grant MacDonald | 2013 | All rights reserved

The construction of this model began with a study of organizational systems on 8″x8″ tiles using white cardstock and black construction paper.  I selected one of these tiles and created a template, from which I cut up strips of poster board and fashioned them into three dimensional shapes (mainly platforms and inclines.)  I then inserted these shapes into an 8″x8″x3″ frame built of more posterboard and sealed all the edges and volumes with masking tape.  After that I applied copious amounts of Vaseline to all surfaces to ensure there would be no sticking once the plaster dried.  Finally I poured in the plaster, let it set for a few hours, and then tore away the frame from the new model.  Viola.

Gradient 1_1-01

Tools of the trade.


I ended up using this model to generate project drawings, including these chunks.



I recently created this Tumblr blog to house pictures taken of models made around PennDesign.  Click on the image to check it out!

PennDesign 2013 | All rights reserved

PennDesign 2013 | All rights reserved

Making a Model with the Laser Cutter

This is the first time I’ve used a laser cutter, and it was amazing.  What would have taken me countless hours to produce by hand using a jigsaw took about 15 minutes on the laser cutter – and I wasn’t even there while it was cutting.