Thursday 29 December 2011

Let there be light!

Time to get this blog moving. My first priority is to be able to take at least mediocre pictures, so I thought I'd have a crack at making a light box. I had a google, poked around a bit and found a number of 'how tos'. In the end I pretty much followed the gist of this one with some improvisation thrown in (I didn't have any muslin and had no intension of buying any so I used tissue paper left over from christmas). I think the pictures summarise the construction process fairly well so without any further ado...

Grab a cardboard box and cut the front off (I cut the bottom of as well because I couldn't find a box the right size). 

Cut holes in 3 sides (top and sides). I used a 2cm square to speed up the marking out process, just put it in the corner and mark round it, then use a ruler to connect the squares up. 

The light box with the bottom added. 

The interior covered in white card. 

The complete box with the curved back-piece added and tissue paper taped over the holes. 

A close up of the rear curve. This is what creates the seamless backdrop associated with light box photography.

The finished (sort of) rig. The left-hand lamp has a 'daylight' bulb that creates a white, full spectrum light. Unfortunately, due to the retardness of EU law, I couldn't get a 100W bulb (they're banned) so I got a 60W instead. This doesn't really produce enough light. The right-hand lamp - which I later decided not to use in the end -  is a Halogen lamp, unfortunately its light is too yellow for taking good photos. 
In the future I plan to get hold of some proper lamps for this rig to finish it off properly, the ones above are just temporary. I'll probably need two seeing as the bulbs lack power. That or better bulbs. Anyway, that can wait for a few weeks until I move back to London for next term at uni.

I've taken a few (nearly a 100!) photos using this rig and my brother's lumix digital camera. This camera isn't the best for macro photography but does the job ok, if I want better results I'll need more light (on the way) and a better camera/lens (unlikely given lack of any form of income until I have gainful employment). I'm planning on putting up a lot of these pictures over the next few weeks as part of various WIPs and to show off (well, expose) the few paint jobs I have finished.

Here's a photo I snapped using the rig. Adios.

Wednesday 28 December 2011

Baby Steps...

Well, I finally gave into the niggling desire which has been building over the past few months and decided to jump on the blogging bandwagon. Seems I'm a blogger now - if one late night inaugural post constitues commitment - and have my own chunk of virtual real estate upon which to build (or neglect and let the weeds grow). The plan is to try and post on here at least once a week - more if I have the time to do much serious modelling or painting - and hopefully provide an interesting diversion for those who, like me, have found blogs an infinite supply of prime procrastination fodder. 'Real life' has a habit of getting in the way of  all but the best laid plans and so if I go a long time between updates this will be because of the sentiment encapsulated in the title of this blog - life vs. gaming.

'Ok, you've rambled your way into an introduction but what are you actually going to write about?' I hear you ask. Well primarily I'm going to be talking about Flames of War (mostly modelling and painting as I have yet to play a proper game!!), my spaceship collection (which includes fleets for Star Wars and BSG) and the occasional board game or larger scale model (i.e. 1/35 etc), whenever I get my hands on them.

Thats all for now. I'm probably going to update this tomorrow with pictures of my fleets and the FOW stuff I have at home at the moment (all of which is currently under construction/being prepped for airbrushing).
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