Making the yard was one of the most fun parts, a little like making miniature gardening.
First we built the stage - a few tables set and leveled together. Then we placed the house and started making the yard around it. We used a lot of organic stuff that we found. The tree is a branch we found in a forest. We stuck it in the table by drilling a hole in it. The laundry rack was placed the same way.
The ground was made from different kinds of sand and soil, milled to thin dust. First we covered all the surface with a layer of regular moist sand and then we spread the thin dust above. We brought a lot of small dry plants from the park and "planted" them around the yard. For smaller and more delicate plants we used linen fibers, painted them a little and shaped them as bushes. Finally, we spread some more sand around, and made a trail out of some little stones.
The bottom part of the fence was made from white cardboard, cut into long straps, glued together, covered with a thick and rough layer of wall putty and painted with acrylic paint. It was made in several separated parts so we can remove some when we need to shoot from different angles.
The wire fence was a bit challenging to find. First we looked for a way to make a chain linked fence, but it didn't come out well, also tried to find a prepared one but couldn't find it in the right scale. So finally we used a gallery mesh, which is not linked but looks o.k on camera, specially on long shots…
I painted it with spray paint, mixing a few colors as gray and brown to get an old and rusty look. I glued it to the bottom part of the fence, cut and twisted in some places to make it look torn. Between the wire fence pieces I added aluminum tubes, also painted old and rusty. The gate was made of white cardboard strips and wooden skewers glued together, covered with wall putty and painted with acrylic paint to look old and rusty too.
We have a lot of small toys spread in the yard. Some of them are little toys we found and painted to look old. I also made some new toys – rag dolls and handheld puppets made of cloth, a giraffe and a monkey that looks like the big ones, and are actually made the same way as them. The swing and the horse were made from a white cardboard, covered with wall putty and painted with acrylic paint.