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Thread: Miniature Photography Tutorial, part 1

  1. #1
    Librarian Nesbet's Avatar
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    Miniature Photography Tutorial, part 1 and 2

    Hi. I've recently published part 1 (of a series of 3) of my own version on how to photography miniatures.

    In this part, I explain how to build a cheap portable lightbox that can be dismantled for storage. Also, first thoughts about lighting.



    Soon I'll publish part 2, regarding how to make the pics, backgrounds and second thoughts about lighting.

    Hope you like it!

    PS: Edited, I forgot to mention, where: in my blog =P



    EDIT: It's FINISHED!!

    MINIATURE PHOTOGRAPHY TUTORIAL, part 1

    MINIATURE PHOTOGRAPHY TUTORIAL, part 2

    MINIATURE PHOTOGRAPHY TUTORIAL, part 3

    Hope you like it! ;D
    Last edited by Nesbet; 04-03-2011 at 08:03.

  2. #2
    Librarian Nesbet's Avatar
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    Re: Miniature Photography Tutorial, part 1

    PART TWO








    (Really don't know why am I posting. Nobody seems to care here xD)

    See ya.
    Last edited by Nesbet; 03-03-2011 at 11:09.

  3. #3
    Commander
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    Re: Miniature Photography Tutorial, part 1

    Think that amount of effort deserves a comment or two! Will post this on some other forums if you don't mind, might help some people out. Cheers!

  4. #4

    Re: Miniature Photography Tutorial, part 1

    Part 2 was very informative. Thanks.

  5. #5
    Chapter Master Tokamak's Avatar
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    Re: Miniature Photography Tutorial, part 1

    I do care a lot about this.
    Quote Originally Posted by 0604854 View Post
    the future is another question

  6. #6
    Librarian Nesbet's Avatar
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    Re: Miniature Photography Tutorial, part 1

    Good to know someone in Warseer cares about it! hahaha ;D

    Final part pretty soon!

  7. #7
    Chapter Master Tokamak's Avatar
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    Re: Miniature Photography Tutorial, part 1

    I plan on making a serious blog website so getting professional pictures is pretty important to me. I also see we have the same camera.
    Quote Originally Posted by 0604854 View Post
    the future is another question

  8. #8
    Commander Maglok's Avatar
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    Re: Miniature Photography Tutorial, part 1

    I like it!
    Tomb Kings and DnD minis plog - A painting log
    The Sands of Nehekhara - A terrain log
    Glok's Grotto - My gaming log

  9. #9
    Chapter Master N810's Avatar
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    Re: Miniature Photography Tutorial, part 1

    Don't forget to mention to use Macro mode for all close up shots.

  10. #10
    Librarian Nesbet's Avatar
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    Re: Miniature Photography Tutorial, part 1

    Crap! that´s so obvius for me now, that I even forgot to mention in the second part xD

    Thanks N810, I´ll edit it now ;D
    Last edited by Nesbet; 04-03-2011 at 01:01.

  11. #11
    Brother Sergeant t_duck's Avatar
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    Re: Miniature Photography Tutorial, part 1

    This is good, thank you (...off to buy two more lamps...)

  12. #12
    Librarian Nesbet's Avatar
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    Re: Miniature Photography Tutorial, part 1

    I'll be glad if you can improve your pics ;D

    For now...


    MINIATURE PHOTOGRAPHY TUTORIAL, part 3

    Cheers!

  13. #13
    Commander Maglok's Avatar
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    Re: Miniature Photography Tutorial, part 1

    Macro mode only really adds that the camera looks for a point to focus on close to the lens though right? At least with my camera that is so. It doesn't change my actual picture, just the way it gets it's focus.
    Tomb Kings and DnD minis plog - A painting log
    The Sands of Nehekhara - A terrain log
    Glok's Grotto - My gaming log

  14. #14
    Veteran Sergeant Conandoodle's Avatar
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    Re: Miniature Photography Tutorial, part 1

    Here, to save you time. I posted a similar topic on a different site. No interest though. There's some info on Macro mode in here.


    Ninjas,

    I see a lot of great models on these forums but in some cases it's difficult to really appreciate the hard work as the photo provided is out of focus. Below is a guide to some basic techniques which will make your miniature look amazing.

    Photography

    1. Utilise the Macro feature. Nearly all digital cameras these days have a macro feature. To enable this feature look for the little flower in the camera's menu. It looks something like this



    2. Macro mode has a very small depth of field. That is, the amount of space/depth that will remain in focus. Therefore, focus the camera on a key feature of the mini. Eg, the character's face. You may find that elements of the model that protrude in front/behind the model will be slightly blurred. Do not worry. In most cases photographers actually prefer to have a blurred background so as not to detract from the target of the image. If your camera has manual settings you can decrease the Aperture. For example, change from f/2.8 to f/8. This will give you a greater depth of field allowing you to capture more mini in crisp detail.

    Macro mode also has a very short focal range. Therefore, you need to position the camera only 10-15cm (4-6 inches) away from the mini. Ensure that the reticle turns green before taking the shot. If you can't get it to focus, move the camera toward or away from the miniature a little.

    I often use a small tripod to ensure a crisp shot.

    3. Flash. Turn it off. See lighting below.

    4. Image size. You need to take into consideration a few things.
    4a. If you are taking a photo solely to post on www.warseer.com or another web based application, lower the image size. 2 Mb is more than enough. It may sound odd but computer monitors have a very low resolution when compared to printed images.
    4b. If you're taking a photo of your army or several models (ie, not using macro mode), bump the image size up to 5Mb+ or so. This way you can crop out a particular model for display and not lose any detail.

    5. Turn your digital zoom off. Digital zoom only enlarges pixels and in no way increases the quality of the image by capturing more data. It's a completely useless feature.

    Lighting

    Lighting is very important. You want bright even light over the entire model .. but not saturate the image with light. For best results, take your photos on an overcast day. I was also recommend placing a lamp nearby. If your lamp is the desk lamp style, face the lamp away from the model. You do not want bright light shining directly on your miniature or your detail and colouring will be lost to patches of white. Alternatively, place a sheet of wax paper/grease prof paper of the lamp to soften the light. BE CAREFUL doing this as paper burns when it gets hot.

    Turn your flash off as your flash will generate a direct source of light .. and as stated above .. saturate the image.

    Positioning

    For best results, a plain white background is preferable. This shows off your miniature, reflects soft light (giving you a more even balance of light) and eliminates any confusion between model and background. It also makes life a bit easier if you want to photoshop your model into a background later. Take a piece of A4 size paper (you probably have some in your printer right now) and sticky tape a piece to the wall and bench - as in the picture below. Do not fold the paper. This way you get and even blending of white behind the mini.



    Place your mini on the paper and away you go. I often use a small tripod with the camera to ensure a crisp shot.

    Snap away my friends. By following this simple guide you'll get amazing photos of your awesome miniatures every time.

    Regards

  15. #15
    Marine
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    Re: Miniature Photography Tutorial, part 1

    I really enjoyed the tutorials. I might try making that photo box of yours. Thanks.

  16. #16
    Librarian Nesbet's Avatar
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    Re: Miniature Photography Tutorial, part 1

    Glad you liked it!

    Cheers!

  17. #17
    Chapter Master Erazmus_M_Wattle's Avatar
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    This thread is very informative. I have had many abortive attempts at photographing my painted minis. I can now go ahead and make successful photos. So, many thanks for your hard work Nesbet and to everyone else who also offered good advice. Thank you. I mean that sincerely.

  18. #18
    Librarian Nesbet's Avatar
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    Re: Miniature Photography Tutorial, part 1

    You're welcome!

    Please post some pics when already tried the advices, to see if you could improve your photography skills a bit or not! ;D

    See ya!

  19. #19
    Commander RTGamer's Avatar
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    Re: Miniature Photography Tutorial, part 1

    Great tutorial. I also really liked your "resin" articles from a while back.

  20. #20
    Librarian Nesbet's Avatar
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    Re: Miniature Photography Tutorial, part 1

    hahahaha, nice to know that! Those tutorials didn't get so much atention when I posted them ;D

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