How to Make a Desert Diorama

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Things You'll Need

  • Box or platform

  • Sand

  • Paper

  • Paint

  • Paint brush

  • Glue

  • Scissors

A diorama can be a creative way to display figures and information. Whether you need to create a diorama for a school project or you simply want an interesting way to display your action figures, you can create a desert-themed diorama in a few simple steps.


Make a Desert Diorama

Step 1

Make your base. You can create a simple diorama using a shoe box for your background, or you can choose to make a more open diorama by building it onto a platform. If you choose this option, you can use a piece of wood or sturdy foam board for your diorama base, in any size you choose. Color your base with spray paint or cover it with paper to make it the color of desert sand. If you choose a diorama with a backboard, make this portion blue to resemble the sky.

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Step 2

Add sand. You can buy craft sand at a crafting store, or even use dirt from your back yard. Spread a mixture of glue and water onto the bottom of your diorama using a paint brush, then sprinkle sand over the top of this mixture until it covers the diorama floor. Shake it out gently over a trash can to remove the excess sand, and let it dry.


Step 3

Create plants. Deserts are full of cactus and other dry-weather plant varieties, so you can create these out of almost any medium. Choose modeling clay and stick small sections of toothpicks into it to create cactus spikes. Make tissue-paper flowers and leaves for brush. Add rocks from your yard to represent the rocks and boulders you can find in the desert.


Step 4

Add animals. In the desert you can find a variety of animals, such as snakes, armadillos and rodents. The easiest way to add these to your diorama is to buy small plastic animal figurines at a toy store, or you can sculpt your own from modeling clay or cut them out with paper. Glue them into your diorama.


Step 5

Finish the sky. Cut a styrofoam ball in half, spray-paint it yellow, and glue the flat side to the top of your diorama's sky scene. Then take some cotton balls and stretch them out to resemble thin clouds, and glue them onto your sky as well.


Use paint and a paint brush to add detail to your diorama, like shades of gray on your rocks or blades of desert grass at the base of your cactus plants.


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