Japanese art director Tatsuya Tanaka (previously) continues to entertain us with his ongoing miniature photo project, now stretching into its fifth year. Tanaka uses office supplies, food, and other found objects that he utilizes as set pieces or backdrops for miniature inhabitants. You would think his desire to continue the project would diminish after surpassing 1,000 photos or that his imagination would be completely tapped, but that’s clearly not the case. You can see new images from the Miniature Calendar project every single day on Instagram and Facebook.
The folks over at Brooklyn-based Tinysaurs build DIY paper model kits of the world’s smallest dinosaurs and other skeletons, both real and fictional. Each tiny kit stands about 2 inches tall when finished and takes about 20-30 minutes to assemble with a pair of tweezers. Kits are available as a standalone paper model, or as a deluxe kit with included borosilicate glass display dome. See more in their Etsy shop. (via So Super Awesome)
If you’re ever in Hamburg, Germany, be sure to join the million annual visitors who stop by Miniatur Wunderland, the largest continuous train set in the world. The huge train set fills several large rooms and contains over 8 miles of tracks that move 900 trains through themed dioramas of cities and other locations around the world like Scandinavia, Hamburg, Bavaria, and Switzerland. If you can’t make it Hamburg, here’s the next best thing: Google just photographed the entire thing and shared it on Google Street View so you can explore it from the perspective of a teeny tiny person.
Google recorded 9 areas of the Miniatur Wunderland system from multiple angles, and you can drop in just like on Google Maps and explore everything at a 360° angle. Watch the video below to get a better sense of how this whole thing is setup. (via Visual News)
In a series of videos posted to YouTube, engineer Aliaksei Zholner demonstrates a miniscule V8 engine he designed that is built completely from paper (with minor bits of scotch tape to prevent friction). The engine is so tiny it fits inside the plastic container found inside a Kinder egg. In the the videos Zholner demonstrates the progress of the engine coming together over several months, and the latest clip posted this weekend incorporates a paper throttle that effectively controls the speed of the little whirring device using compressed air. You can also see his wildly popular model v6 engine from last year.
We’ve seen a number of artists working with pencil leads over the last few years, where the narrow dimensions of graphite are carved into minuscule objects. This recent piece by Nebraska-based artist Cindy Chinn is particularly ingenious, an entire carpenter’s pencil is turned into a tiny train, trestle, and bridge. “This piece was designed using straight lead pieces for the rails, with the tiny carved train placed and securely glued on top of the rails,” Chinn shares. “The train engine is only 3/16″ of an inch tall. The pencil is 5-5/8″ long and mounted in a wood shadowbox frame as shown in the photos.”
For her series Micro Matter, Amsterdam-based designer and art director Rosa de Jong created towering houses and tall buildings inside the narrow confines of large glass test tubes. Perhaps comparable to a ship in bottle, the little houses and buildings are all handmade using natural objects and some model making elements like faux moss. Some pieces even play with gravity and appear to grow both upward and downward, reminding me of paintings by Cinta Vidal or sculptures by Thomas Doyle. See more over on Behance. (via Lustik)
Ukrainian glass artist Nikita Drachuk of Glass Symphony creates all manner of glass spiders, octopi, and other critters by hand. He uses a method called lampworking, where a lamp or torch is used to melt rods of colored glass. Once in a molten state, the glass can be formed by blowing and shaping with various tools and small movements. You can see more of their delicate glass critters here.