DIY Photo stuff

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DIY Photo stuff

Postby Wesr » Tue Oct 20, 2009 9:12 am

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Re: DIY Photo stuff

Postby Top-notch comix » Tue Oct 20, 2009 12:47 pm

that's pretty helpful
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Re: DIY Photo stuff

Postby Wesr » Tue Oct 20, 2009 12:51 pm

i have enough cardboard laying around to make about 30 of them. the lamps are gonna be expensive.
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Re: DIY Photo stuff

Postby Darththomas » Mon Dec 14, 2009 3:28 pm

Thought I'd add to this with my home made photo set up. It's really cheap to make and I feel it gets pretty good results so here goes.

Start off with a box big enough to fit your subject in. As you can see I used a dog treat box,

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Cover the inside with paper colour of your choice, I used A4 sized white as it's quite neutral and about the same size as the box. I stuck it all down with a pritt stick, trying to keep it all as straight as possible.

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Get some stick on LED lights, these ones cost £3, less than $5. I used three but you could probably get better results with 4 or even 6. Stick them to one end of the box, I used superglue but you may be able to use the sticky pads that come on them.

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Make a "diffuser". I used another cardboard box and cut out the middle. I then taped another piece of paper around the frame.

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Tape the "diffuser" to the outside edge of the box so it can be hinged on and off. Switch on the LEDs and hinge the diffuser over the LED lights.

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Here's the finished article all lit up

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I then use a pile of Xbox games to rest my camera on, you can use anything though. A pile of books, magazines, another box or maybe even a camera stand but this adds extra cost. Over all anything that keeps your camera more steady than your hands do. I use games because I can easily lower or higher the level of the camera.

That's it, decent results with a total spend of £3, here's the results.

Image

Hope this helps.
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Re: DIY Photo stuff

Postby Top-notch comix » Mon Dec 14, 2009 4:21 pm

NICE! I might have to make one of those... I know I have some of those lights hangin around somewhere!
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Re: DIY Photo stuff

Postby Wesr » Fri Dec 18, 2009 12:09 pm

You see those lights at the dollar stores all the time.
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Re: DIY Photo stuff

Postby BKZ718 » Wed Jan 27, 2010 10:52 am

Thanks bro, i could really use help with taking photos. I also need to buy a friggin tripod.
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Re: DIY Photo stuff

Postby Wesr » Wed Jan 27, 2010 10:57 am

I have one that extends to like 1' tall. I got it for a buck at the dollar store once. Not the greatest but beggers can't be choosers. Walmart sometimes has full sized ones on sale for like 25.00
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Re: DIY Photo stuff

Postby BKZ718 » Wed Jan 27, 2010 11:19 am

So it would be best to get one that extends from the floor up I assume?
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Re: DIY Photo stuff

Postby Darththomas » Wed Jan 27, 2010 12:04 pm

BKZ_CUSTOM wrote:So it would be best to get one that extends from the floor up I assume?



Really I've found a stack of books, dvds or games work just as well.
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Re: DIY Photo stuff

Postby ARAHfan32 » Thu Jul 15, 2010 7:53 am

Thanks for the tips! I'm going to have to try some of them out. I'm currently using a type of drop-light that you see in auto shops, with the clamp on the end and the round reflective shield. I get alot of shadows though, so I'll have to try some of the ideas here to see if they help me out. :)
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Re: DIY Photo stuff

Postby Metaluna Mutant » Wed Jul 28, 2010 10:02 am

Image Image
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Re: DIY Photo stuff

Postby Wesr » Wed Jul 28, 2010 10:14 am

Good news is walmart has cheap full size telescopic tripods.
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Photographing your customs

Postby blaynescott » Sun Dec 26, 2010 10:04 pm

Hey everyone,

I was chatting with another forum member recently, and figured this bit of advice might be helpful to others submitting pictures to the 'Realm of their custom figure works:

I do find that if you shoot with a direct-on flash, most figures (including factory ones) look like garbage. Just like how people, which you shoot them with a flash close up - look *horrible*. In photography you're rarely suppose to shoot a flash directly AT someone/something. You're suppose to 'bounce' it off the ceiling, or a wall, so the subject takes on the lighting tones of the room around them. Near-impossible with built in pocket cameras, but with SLR's you can.

When I photograph my figures, I use either a Nikon or Canon point-and-shoot pocket camera, and 2 or more lamps close by. The figures sit on a piece of bristol board, curved against a wall (or a tall lamp) like a half-pipe. In one hand, I have a lamp with no shade on it. The other (left hand) I have the camera with no-flash settings and MACRO enabled. It's a flower-icon, telling the camera to focus on your figure, not the wall behind it. It's hard to shoot pics one-handed, but having a mobile light source makes things look really dynamic/amazing. Even the WiP shots I do for customers look good now that I'm working this way.

While I don't advocate photoshopping your custom figures to correct painting mistakes, etc.: I do use photoshop to brighten/adjust the lighting. This can be done by using the magic-wand tool to select the grey/white background, feather by 1 or 2 pixels, desaturate and increase the brightness/contract +100. It's possible to get this effect with a nice SLR/flash and a light-reflecting "lightbox" (usually used for shooting jewelry) -- but for everyone else whose on a budget, similar results are achievable.


Hope this helps.

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Re: Photographing your customs

Postby getsa » Mon Dec 27, 2010 8:44 am

yeah, a direct flash would just drown/erase the details of the figure. you should just turn off the flash or cover it with white paper to diffuse it a little.

you can also make your own photo tent. it's easy. just take a large box (i used a television box) and put a white paper to cover the inside (it would serve as your background so you can use other colors if you want.)

for the lights, i'm using some cheap rechargeable lamps that i bought for Php150 each (approximately $3-$4).
having a well lighted photo tent would decrease the blurriness and graininess of the pics that your taking.

here's what the set up looks like:
Image

yeah, i know... the lamps don't look very manly... but it works well! haha!
the black thing in front of the figure is a custom made tripod. it's made of a suction cup base, bendable metal wire arm, and three more bendable clasps that holds my cellphone (i only use my cellphone to take pics of my customs). i just put the cellphone in position, set it in auto timer, and let it take pictures on its own. having it on auto timer also decreases the blur. i have very shaky hands so it blurs when i'm holding the camera phone and taking pics.

the trick in having clear pics does not depend on having a hi-tech camera. you just have to find a decent one and have a well lighted surroundings so that it can take clear photos.
i use my nokia 5610 express music. the built in camera is 3.2 megapixels.
of course. having a dslr or a digicam with a macro setting would be great, but it won't matter if you don't know how to use it. so i suggest that you take that camera and abuse it! take dozens of pictures and practice with it! it's fun! :)

or if you really don't want to make a mini photo tent, you can just take the figures outside and use some natural light. and remember how to use the sunlight to your advantage.
don't take back lighted pics unless you are going for some silhouette effect for your pics. position your figure facing the sunlight so that the details would clearly be seen when you take pictures.

here's what the pics would look like:

outdoor light. (without the photo tent)
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indoor set up (with photo tent)
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i'm not a pro at this and sometimes the details still wash out when i'm using my lamps, and IMO, outdoor natural light still produces better pics compared to indoor artificial light.
so i'm thinking of making an open top photo tent so that i can take the set up outdoors and still have the white background. only problem with that is you always have to wait for the sun to shine, and there's a particular time in the day that the sunlight is perfect for a photo shoot. so time is very critical if you're going to take pictures outdoor.

well, hope that helps.
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