1453 and all that

I’ve been on my Easter holidays this week so have been able to make progress with a long term project that has been on the back burner for a while. I’ve been attempting to make a 2mm scale model of Constantinople in 1453, and run some participation games based around the Ottoman siege at conventions in the UK.

The Forum of Theodosius in 2mm

The advantage of Constantinople was that it was besieged countless times and therefore I’m hoping the model can be reused for a wide range of differing scenarios with a bit of tinkering.

Another view of the Forum


The board won’t be a precise reconstruction as in real 2mm scale this would be about thirty feet long! I’m hoping to squeeze a good representation of the city into a 6’ x 8’ table which will include the Golden Horn, part of the Sea of Marmara, and the Bosphorus on three of its sides.

The Galata Tower in 2mm. A beauty!

Jon Matthews has designed some superb 3D models of some of the major landmarks in the city for me. The round forum is the Forum of Constantine. The rectangular forum is the Forum of Theodosius. The tower is the Galata Tower. This wasn’t strictly in Constantinople but in Galata - a Genoese colony on the other side of the Golden Horn. It still stands today and is an excellent place to visit and get a sense of the landscape of the siege if you ever visit Istanbul today!

The Forum of Constantine

Painting 2mm might seem rather daunting but these use similar techniques to what you might use on a larger 28mm figure. I tend to over-exaggerate the highlights around the windows and doors deliberately so that they are more eye catching. The ordinary buildings will probably get a very simple paint job in comparison. The big open grey space in the middle of the Forum of Theodosius looked very stark and grey originally so I have tried to break it up and attempted to give the impression of a flagstone texture. It’s all rather representative but hopefully from a distance looks more natural!

6 thoughts on “1453 and all that”

  • Nick Furze

    What a wonderful project looks great so far. I hope you'll post more pictures in the future.

  • Charles the Modeller
    Charles the Modeller April 22, 2020 at 7:09 am

    Absolutely fantastic work can’t wait to see it at one of the shows. I built a 2mm scale model of Arnhem so I know how much effort this will take. I can tell you though that it is absolutely worth it when you get a finished city built. Keep us all updated on progress!

  • Robert Roughton
    Robert Roughton April 23, 2020 at 12:56 pm

    Nice going Mark. Having seen the raw 3D prints first-hand, they're coming along terrifically.

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