Tiny Worlds: Building Dioramas With Allis Markham - Atlas Obscura Experiences
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Tiny Worlds: Building Dioramas With Allis Markham

$60 per person Online Experience
2 sessions
See Dates
$60 per person
$60 per person
See Dates
What We’ll Do

In this two-part lecture and demonstration series, learn to craft miniature dioramas from start to finish.

Course Description

Step inside the studio of Allis Markham, an award-winning taxidermist and educator, for a hands-on diorama-building demonstration. In this two-part series, Allis will walk through the process of creating stunning and accurate tiny environments using various artistic mediums and techniques you can use at home.

Follow along with Allis as she builds a small-scale tabletop diorama display from start to finish, sharing secrets from museum exhibits along the way. You can add specimens like birds, mammals, and insects to this diorama, or it can stand alone as its own little world. By the end of this course, you’ll not only have an understanding of the diorama-making process, but you’ll also be equipped with printable PDFs of materials, tips and tricks, and resources for potential specimens to add. You’ll also have access to videos of the two live sessions, which will be available for ten weeks after the course concludes. At the very least, you'll leave this course with a new appreciation for the artistic process of creating a snapshot of nature. 

Syllabus at a Glance

There are 2 total sessions included in this purchase, each lasting for 2 hours on 2 consecutive Saturdays beginning June 19.

Session 1 (Saturday, 6/19/2021, 2–4 PM ET): History & Foundations: Base, backgrounds, and groundcover

Session 2 (Saturday, 6/26/2021, 2–4 PM ET): Building Your World: Plants, specimens, and finishing touches

Between Sessions

Outside of class, students can watch videos available on TheDeadStream.com for a more in-depth look into certain aspects of the process. No homework is mandatory. 

Course Materials

Links will be provided for purchasing supplies. Tips will be given for legally acquiring specimens to add to the diorama, although it’s not necessary; they can be beautiful stand-alone scenes.

Pricing Options

We currently offer tiered ticket pricing in an effort to increase accessibility for all students, regardless of economic situation. Our lecture series are available at three ticket prices, with a limited number of no-pay spots available for students who could not otherwise participate. This model is intended to support a wider range of students as well as our instructors. To learn more about our tiered sliding scale pricing model, please visit our FAQ page.

Atlas Obscura Online Courses

Our online courses offer opportunities for participants to emerge with new skills, knowledge, connections, and perspectives through multi-session classes designed and taught by expert instructors. Courses can take one of two forms: Seminars are intimate, interactive classes—capped at nine to 25 students—exploring topics and crafts through discussion, workshops, assignments, and in-class activities. We also offer lecture series that can be attended live, or viewed via a recording that will be shared within 72 hours after each session airs. Class recordings for lecture series will be available with a temporary password for a limited time following the final session of the course.

To learn more about our current course offerings, please visit www.atlasobscura.com/online-courses.

For answers to commonly asked questions, check out our FAQ page here.

Where We’ll Be

Once registered, you’ll receive a confirmation email from Eventbrite that will provide access to the class meeting. Please save the confirmation email as you’ll use it to access your course via Zoom on each scheduled date and time.

About Your Instructor
Allis Markham
Allis Markham

Allis Markham is an award-winning taxidermist/nassologist based in Los Angeles, California. She was named Third in the World at the 2017 World Taxidermy Championships and was the 2018 California Champion, receiving Judges’ Choice Best of Show, People's Choice, and the Artisan Award from the United Taxidermist Association.

More recently, Allis has focused on museum work and public education, and taught the only taxidermy course in the country in recent years at Occidental College. She’s worked with institutions such as the Natural History Museum of Santa Barbara, Moore Lab of Zoology, The Huntington Library, The Frost Museum of Science, Colorado State University, and The Getty. Additionally, she’s created commissions for Gucci, The Nomad Hotel, EB Florals, and television shows such as Bates Motel. Allis has also been featured in numerous publications such as The New York Times, The Washington Post, the cover of LA Weekly, and more. You can also watch the critically acclaimed documentary STUFFED, which followed her for several years, or listen to her episode of Ologies.

What Else You Should Know

This lecture series is designed so students can participate live or watch a recording after each session airs. Sessions will take place live over Zoom, with dedicated Q&A segments for students to ask questions via video or chat. Within 72 hours after each session airs, we will email all enrolled students a recording of the session, which they can watch using a temporary password for up to ten weeks after the course concludes.

In most cases, instructors will use Google Classroom to communicate with students outside of class. While students aren’t required to use Classroom, instructors will be using this platform to post resources, discussion questions, and assignments, when applicable.

We provide closed captioning for all of our courses, as well as transcripts upon request. Please reach out to us at experiences@atlasobscura.com if you have any questions, requests, or access needs.

Dates and Availability

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