GOF Boathouse Stairs

I’m back! I’ve been way too busy to put much time into Hogwarts, but I’ve been able to sneak in enough moments here and there to have an update for today.

Big staircases with lots of landings and odd angles aren’t necessarily super fun for me, but they’ve gotta be done. The GOF version of the boathouse stairs kept the same look as the original, but they were all reconfigured so they could meet up with the viaduct courtyard. They only changed once more, in DH, when the viaduct courtyard and boathouse both changed.

I started cannibalizing bits and pieces of my original build to create the GOF version, working from the bottom up:

At this point, it was just about getting the pieces in place. I knew I’d fix all the spots where they intersect once I had the overall setup right.

As I finished arranging the different flights and landings, I was surprised to discover that the steps were vertically overshooting the viaduct courtyard by a significant margin. On the left is the too-tall version; on the right is the same thing after squashing the whole thing down a bit:

Then it was just a matter of clipping off all the extra bits so the pieces actually fit together neatly – the most tedious step of them all – and adding the flambeaux that light the way. Here are the complete GOF steps on the right, compared to their predecessors on the left:

We’ll wrap up for today with an interesting plan view of the GOF castle, with the original boathouse steps superimposed as well:

Hoping my next update will not take this long!

Hogwarts Gets Its Steps In

I had a change of heart – rather than working on the textures or finishing the Prisoner of Azkaban clock tower, I decided to bite the bullet and just do my best with the original boathouse steps. I don’t have enough photographic coverage to be able to measure things out via photogrammetry, so I decided to just follow the floor plan and estimate the rise/run of the stairs.

The first step was to lay out the steps and landings themselves. This came together pretty quickly:

To my relief, the scale ended up being fairly reasonable. The next step was tougher…I had to create the walls along both sides of the steps, and they posed some challenges in terms of angles and intersections and whatnot. Halfway through, I started getting pretty annoyed…

The two circular landings were particularly difficult. But I stayed the course and eventually finished the walls, topping them off with the necessary flambeaux or torches. (Note that these walls are intentionally much taller than what you’ll see in the final model – the terrain will cover most of the height in most spots. I just wanted to make sure I had plenty to work with.)

Whew…all done! Here are a few more views for you to enjoy, including a nighttime shot looking up from the boathouse. This would have been Harry’s view of the castle immediately after disembarking from the boats.

With the boathouse steps complete, I also threw in the crenellated walls around the Chamber of Reception walkway.

What’s next? I’m already assembling my reference materials for the clock tower and courtyard that were added in the third film. Lots of intricate details here, especially since so much of it was also built as a physical set. Should be fun to finally finish that area!