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Tiny Noir - Miniature Hearts Bleed Just as Red

For about a month I've been lightly obsessed with using Midjourney to create virtual dioramas and sculptures, with most of that energy focused on creating miniature noiresque scenes. It turns out that "diorama" is one of those power words in a prompt, kicking MJ into an aesthetic that makes some very deliberate and also effective choices. Primary among these choices is heavy tilt shift focus, in which a very shallow depth of field is used to give the impression of an extreme close-up. The feeling of a diorama is further enhanced by the materials used to create the scene, using cardboard, paper, and plastics, often assembled in an apparently clumsy, clunky and imprecise way. The results can be almost eerily convincing, and provoke in me a kind of visceral satisfaction that is difficult to describe.

When this technique or style is applied to the classic film noir genre, there exists in my mind an interesting layering of representation involved, a kind of Russian nesting doll of modeling. As an AI image generating engine, Midjourney creates an image of a virtual scene. A diorama is a kind of virtual, miniaturized version of a much larger structure. Finally, film noir is, itself, a highly stylized caricature of reality. It's a version within a version within a version. It occurs to me now that one more layer could be added if the diorama in question was made of a bunch of theatre employees in a scene shop standing around a maquette of a set. Hm, I think I have to make that happen...

Please enjoy these galleries of Tiny Noir.

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