Miss baseball yet? Well, join the club. In fact, what do you say to the club holding regular meetings, in this very spot? For some non-Covid-19 baseball talk. Because I'll be here, with what I'm calling, "Dodgers Distractions;" a place for team-specific and baseball fun stuff. Starting right now.
David Resnick is an architecture student at Kent State University and the creator of Stadiums for Ants. He's a life-long baseball fan who's turned his passion into art -- fine art -- in the form of built-to-scale "handmade, one-of-a-kind mini replica stadiums."
Completed models built include Dodger Stadium, Miller Park, PNC Park, Progressive Field - Quicken Loans, First Energy Stadium, Safeco Field and Minute Maid Park.
Below is our lightly-edited email Q & A:
Question. How did you get started doing this?
Answer: In the 1990s, my grandfather bought me one of those ceramic model stadiums (Danbury Mint, I believe is the company that makes them), and it inspired me to try to build my own. I was always into Legos as a kid, so I got a bunch of cardboard and set out to work.
Q: Is there a step by step process you can lay out for me? Do you have access to blueprints or anything like that?
A: The first step is research and finding the right photo from maps. I usually take a screenshot, top down, of the stadium and its surroundings. Then I’ll import that to Photoshop and edit it so that it doesn’t include things that will get built in 3D.
Once that's done and sized correctly for printing, I import it into my 3D modeling software and begin building the stadium. This gives me control over the size and scale before I start printing individual pieces. From there, its a lot more Googling and Photoshopping each piece, resizing them to fit the digital model, then printing and assembling.
I have never found architectural blueprints, aside from some of the ballpark art that’s out there floating around. Google Earth is also a great resource. It gives you some baseline dimensions and heights. Things like that.
Q: Can you tell me about your architecture education and background?
A: Sooooo, kind of a long-is story. As mentioned, I had done this (crudely, I might add) when I was younger, and never really pursued it. In 2015 I was going through a difficult time in my life and needed an outlet. My brother suggested I try building a stadium model, so I gave it a shot. Not too long after, an architect friend of mine came by to see my work and demanded I meet his friend, the Associate Dean of Architecture at Kent Stare, Bill Willoughby.
So I took a meeting and was offered a spot in the next freshman class. At 34 years old it was a big decision, but I took the leap and am grateful that I did.
Making replicas of existing buildings isn’t the same as designing something from scratch, but I can see that the spatial awareness and sense of scale I already had inside is proving valuable. I am hoping that when I graduate next year, I’ll be in good shape to find work at one of the big stadium architecture firms.
Q: How do you ship them?
A: They are specially packaged and shipped similar to fine art. I actually hand cut foam insulation to hold the models in place and pad the bottom and sides of the boxes, which are marked fragile.
Q: Is the Dodger Stadium model for sale? Other stadiums for sale?
A: This one is actually sold to a client already, but I am happy to entertain offers [to build a stadium model for a client]. Kind of like 7/11. I’m not always doing business, but I am always open.
And remember, glove conquers all.
Howard Cole has been writing about baseball on the internet since Y2K. Follow him on Twitter.