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NOTE: These models were created in the early 2000s. My processes, software and
skill-set have since progressed. :) ~ Ray

I've spent the last few months building my 3D mansion, and every time I thought it was finished, I would find new information which would force me to make revisions and improvements to the model. The only references I used to design the mansion model, were photos of the facade I had gathered from my own collection, and from the web. My visit to the mansion in November gave me the opportunity to photograph everything else I needed to complete the facade.
In recent weeks I was able to view some of the blueprints of the mansion, and I was amazed to find that my mansion's dimensions were almost perfectly aligned with the actual mansion dimensions!

Ever since I started this model, I had planned on building a complete, fully actualized mansion, with the familiar front facade, but also with a newly designed rear architecture of my own creation. Now that I've completed the ride buildings, and facade (which can be seen HERE), I can proceed with creating a "real" mansion.

I was going to keep the process to myself, and not reveal the design until the model, and renderings were completed. But I decided to post this process, and let you know what I'm doing.


Below is the first rendering of the rear of the mansion. I'm still debating whether to incorporate the ride's entrance and exit as part of the mansion. For now, I decided to leave them in place.
Since the mansion is built into a hillside, the rear of the mansion will need a backyard which is level with the ground floor, but right now it is floating, until the yard is inserted. I am trying to incorporate windows, which would correlate with the windows seen in some of the scenes of the ride. For instance, the two arched windows and door (seen below) indicate where the ballroom is located.


February 9 , 2005
I wanted to add something architecturally interesting to the rear of the mansion, which would blend with the architectural design, and have a connection to the story of the ride. Well, one of my favorite books from my childhood was called "Alexander and the Magic Mouse", written by Martha Sanders, and beautifully illustrated by Philippe Fix. Here is an online version of the story.
One of my favorite illustrations, is the one shown below. I still have the book, and it shows the signs of the many tracings I made of these pages, as a kid.

I loved the idea of that circular room (bottom right), and it could be considered the seance room for Madam Leota.
So I took one of the walls from the entrance portico, and tweaked it a bit.

Then I copied it as an 8 sided array. After adding windows, a roof, some of the ironwork from the mansion roof, and a base wall, I came up with this.

I think it will work. It compliments the shapes of the front tower, and the conservatory.


February 12 , 2005
I reused the entrance por tico from the front of the mansion, and enlarged it to become a covered carriage port. I also reused one of the front gables (which are on the left and right of the front door) and placed it over the Leota Room. I've begun building the terrain around the mansion, and I'll need to create a new image map for it, with grass and a driveway, which will run under the carriage portico.



February 14 , 2005
Here is an interesting photo I discovered, showing a mansion with a very familiar architectural style. Obviously this is a Hundson Valley Gothic, similar to the WDW mansion design. There are a couple of elements here that I may incorporate into my model a little later.


I copied the finials and corner stones from the front of the mansion, and pasted them on to the new dormer, over the Leota Room. I also created an image map for the yard and driveway, which really snaps up the scene. The final touch was an experiment I had with the Lightwave plugin "Sasquatch Lite", or "SasLite", which is a 3D hair (or in this case, grass) generator. I never used SasLite before, but I'll definitely be using it in the future.
Now the driveway, and rear of the mansion, need some landscaping. Perhaps a paved walkway around the base of the mansion, some retaining walls around the driveway's "mudhole"(which I'll probably pave with cobblestones), and a few brick columns with stone ball finials, to greet people coming up the hill? Hmmm...a gate?


February 15 , 2005
The portico was enlarged, and I added an arched doorway which leads to a short staircase, from where one has access to the new terrace, which wraps around the Leota Room. I replaced the dirt road with cobblestones, which I created quickly in Photoshop using the "Mosaic" filter. The urns and stone railings were copied from the front terrace and refitted for the rear terrace. I had to raise the Leota Room in order to raise the terrace above ground level, so now the room is approximately at the same level as the mansion's first floor windows.


February 16 , 2005
Below is a shot from under the portico. The finials on the left are the crest above the ride's exit arch.


Here is a view looking up the driveway to the rear of mansion, as it exists so far.


And an aerial view.

I've added a second page to "Creating", so click on "CONTINUE", to see what's next!

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Email Ray: haunted3d@raykeim.com