I was having no end of troubles with my photography equipment today and I’m still not really sure what was going on.
It looked like there was a film or something over the front of my lens – or there was too much light or some such, but with good olde photoshop I managed to get something workable!
I’ve been trying to tie up smaller, loose ends before the end of the year. This particular unit of Space Marines was one of them! I believe they are from a starter box-set circa 1993. Originally given to my husband, by his eldest brother, when he was a young lad himself. They got put into our legendary bits box and I reclaimed them for my Space Marine Battle Company when I only had a tactical squad slot left!
They were also a great few models to use to get the painting bug back – they’re old so I wouldn’t feel guilty if I ‘messed up’ – I’m actually pretty pleased with how they turned out and are some of the better models I have done to date.
It’s great to see some improvement in my painting skills.
I’m working on my 5 man Primaris Squad at the moment, so when they’re done I shall share a picture of them too and hope I don’t have the same issues with the camera as I did with these ones.
Maybe the term ancient is a little far fetch, but he is certainly an oldie! He and the rest of his squad had been thrown into the bits box way back when I first started my Space Marine Chapter – my husband must have thrown them in at some point – and I recently picked them up to get back into painting again; not wanting to ‘ruin’ my newer models as I’ve not been active in the painting hobby for a while.
They stem from the time ‘I had a Space Marine problem’ a turn of phrase that has since been borrowed by others. It was a problem I once had though and as soon as people from the old Bury & Bolton Wargaming Club stated ‘I have some Space Mariens for sale’ my ears would burn and I’d snap them up; which explains why I have four Vindicators and several tired looking tanks & Dreadnoughts
Now that my Company has enough models, I don’t suffer from this problem in the same way (Although, it’s probably a good idea if I no longer go to any gaming groups!)
This is how the guy ended up looking!
I am pretty pleased with how he turned out, especially seeing as I have put a base coat of red already on them (And a lot of my other miniatures, oh no!) that had gone off and split and in my n00bishness, I didn’t realise!
I’ll share an updated picture of him and the rest of his Squad when they’re done.
I’ve still got a lot of work to do on this particular project and I’d even put it to the side for a while in lieu of other things I wanted to work on.
But, this is the first page of Codex: Blood Guard; a mock up image of my home-brew Space Marine Chapters very own Codex.
My intention is to write a whole codex for them (For personal, non-profit use only) as a challenge and to prove to myself that I can get things finished! I’ve had my Chapter for a few years now and it would be great to have something to show for it – other than just the 4th company in models!
I know theres a lot of typoes in the mock up and due to a catastrophic Mac failure I no longer have the original file to edit, but it wouldn’t take long to remake this page.
Honestly, I just want to feel like I am ‘back on track’ with the hobby in one form or another, and just writing this I feel excited to crack on again!
This is my home-brew Space Marine chapters (Blood Guard) Chapter Master model.
And I cheated my hind legs off to get this photograph looking right! This is the overall feel I would like to achieve for my photographs, but I managed to get this looking right thanks to using Photoshop and merging two photographs together – I’d much prefer to be able to do all my tricks and fancy stuff in camera; but I don’t think my current kit is capable of doing it somehow.
This was taken by using my light-room and a spot-light behind my Canon Eos 20D. This set up lit up the whole photograph too much, but I liked how the light hit the model making some interesting contrasting shadows.
So it was a case of having to darken the background without making the model himself too dark – so exposure compensation wasn’t going to do the trick here. Duplicating the layer, setting the new layer to multiply and removing the character from the multiply layer was the only way that I could achieve the look I was going for.
Not ideal when it comes to wanting to be able to create these images in camera – but still something useful to remember for another session in case I don’t get the results I am after originally. Unsuccessful camera sessions do not have to be written off as a loss.
I’ve included the original image below – just to emphasise my point that the original picture didn’t work. There was also some cropping involved – which I am sure is a standard of photo-editing.
I attempted to revisit one of my Husbands Space Wolf models today. I first took photographs of them and share them in one of my earlier posts and said how I didn’t think they’d worked very well because of the background/set-up I had.
So, when I got my light-room I thought I would give them another try. I just wanted to focus on one of the more standard models in the army.
I’m still not 100% happy with this image either. Compared to the previous it looks really flat; especially on his face – and that’s not the look I’ve got in mind as an end-goal. Yet for the purposes of showing off a model I guess it works?
I’d like to revisit this model sometime and try again, because I know deep down that I can do better than this and it’s actually highly frustrating to not be able to get the results I would like with him. He is a pretty simple model, sculpture wise and I am not quite sure where I am going wrong with him at the moment.
I don’t share enough of my own models on here – mostly because I don’t really see them as being great subjects for photography; my painting skills certainly aren’t up to the same standards as my peers so I much prefer taking photographs of their models – but sometimes you just see a model and think ‘I’ll photograph this one today.’
Such was the case with my Scout Bike here
I’m still not 100% happy with the images I managed to get of him; but I certainly feel like I am heading in the right direction – I tried on a white background as well, just to see.
It has been a pretty steep learning curve thus far! Trying to remember how to use my camera after only having lightly dabbled with using it in the past X amount of years has been pretty intense; but you know, it’s been amazing!
After having to lay on the floor from my last set – which I shared in my first post here – I figured I’d do myself a favour and set the models (background and stage) up on a bench rather than pressing my face against the cold and wet floor.
I used natural lighting for these photographs and still feel that the is something to be had in taking models outside and finding natural backgrounds for them; it’s something that I’d like to explore further too – maybe find something I can take out with me while on dog, child and family walks; but that’s a thought and exploration for another time.
I don’t feel like this background worked well for the models; it felt too fussy and distracts from the model itself. So I sought a different solution – a change of background. Looking for something natural around the garden; I found the wooden log that we use as a door stop.
I admit, everything here has been photographed hand-held and on ‘Full Auto’ not something that I am proud of. It’s the first few steps on my journey though and I know I have a lot to (re)learn still – especially when it comes to manual controls of the camera. All in good time, my aim is for slow and steady improvement, not a breakneck speed that burns out.
I think I was a little eager this session as I photographed two sets of models. The other being my Husbands Space Wolves – I didn’t change the set up so I was still snapping away happily on Full Auto, hand held with the same overall look to the images as well (Didn’t change the background)
I really don’t feel that this background was as successful for the Space Wolves as it was for the Khorne Warriors, so I’ll be readdressing them in another Session. The warmth of the background doesn’t help to convey the ‘feel’ that the models give off. I think they would suit a much colder looking background – but it’s a good lesson to learn: What works for one model, won’t work for them all.