Paging the Photographers.

Discussion in 'The Toyark' started by jourdo, Sep 11, 2006.

  1. jourdo

    jourdo TFW2005 Supporter

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    Many of you (Redline, Soundwave.ca, Alphie to name a few) take great shots of the bots. I was hoping you could share some of your secrets. What kind of set up do you use? Any way you can show us a pic of your "studios"? Any of your knowledge would be appreciated.

    Thanks!
     
  2. REDLINE

    REDLINE longer days, plz? Veteran

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    haha... studio!


    :lol  my "studio" is a lockbox laying on my bed, with a white piece of posterboard lying on the bed in front of it, and a second one propped up against it, for the backdrop. I then have 3 lamps that each use a 60 watt GE Reveal bulb. my camera is on a tripod, and I ALWAYS use the timer function so that I'm not touching the camera to eliminate any possibility of camera shake. pretty much it. if the lighting ends up slightly off which can happen thanks to weather, then I can touch it up right in photoshop :) 
     
  3. Night Flame

    Night Flame TFW2005 Supporter

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    HAHAHAHA! STUDIO?!

    My "studio" is a card table I pop up in the living room on days I think my wife won't kill me for doing so. Let's see, where did I put that picture? Ah, here we go:

    [​IMG]

    Which results in something like:

    [​IMG]
    Good pictures require four things.

    1. Decent lighting. Could be anything from mildly cloudy sunlight to super expensive studio lighting. I use three "work lights" with photo bulbs in them. 250 Watts each, and placed far enough away to not cause glare. Two of them on work stands, one on an old mic stand converted for "boom" use to be an "overhead" light.

    2. A tripod. When all else fails, a stack of books high enough to keep your camera aligned properly with your subject. Anything to prevent the camera from moving during the shot.

    3. Either a remote trigger, or a timer function on the camera. Again, anything to prevent the camera from moving during the shot.

    4. Luck. You can increase your chances at "luck" by playing relentlessly with your camera. Seriously, take pictures of everything you see for the first few weeks you have it, and fiddle with the settings until you get comfortable that you at least have a general feel for what each setting does. That gives you the best shot at taking an array of shots that will somehow produce the results you want.

    Never be afraid to take more shots. The first one will rarely get it right. That's why digital is so great. You can do a photo shoot fifty pictures long to get three shots worth showing to people. I have a habit of cycling through aperature timings and isos on my shots and then settling on which one was "good" once I get them on the computer. Like, for instance, this gallery. I think I took four total shots from that one to show people.

    It's like everything else, practice, practice, and when you think you've got it, practice some more. And don't be afraid to fail. The onyl truly bad shot, is the one you were afraid to take.
     
  4. alphie

    alphie Veteran

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    My studio is an old drafting table I have in a corner of a room. I have black and white twin sheets or if I want a cleaner look, I use black or white poster board. I then use two desk lamps with 60watt Reveal bulbs and I have a third lamp, used for dining rooms, has a really nice hood and casts great light. With these lamps I usually don't do straight lighting shots. I play around with lighting QUITE a bit. I usually try to get good shadows or get the light to bounce just right. What I also discovered is tin foil. Yes, tin foil. Get a small piece of cardboard, cover it with tin foil then hold the piece next to the light. You will see it helps reflect the light and helps with getting better depth.

    I use a tripod for the reasons that Redline said. It helps especially when trying to get dynamic shots. What I always tell beginners is to never be afraid to experiment, especially if taking pictures with a digital. If the picture doesn't turn out right, it can always be deleted. Experiment, experiment, experiment.
     
  5. Mike

    Mike Banned

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    my studio is like everyone else's here..

    I use my camera on a flexible tripod, and a backdrop is an old white blind I pulled out of a window of my old house, and for lighting, I just use the over head florescent in the cieling :p 

    but most times, I don't set up anything kinda "studio", I just take pics where ever
     
  6. KA

    KA PENIS GOES WHERE?!!

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    mr cheebs, paging mr cheebs. clean up on aisle supah cleah.

    XD
     
  7. REDLINE

    REDLINE longer days, plz? Veteran

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    he didn't ask how to edit photos, he asked how to take them :p 
     
  8. KA

    KA PENIS GOES WHERE?!!

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    paging mr redline, the jerkstore called, says its out of you.
     
  9. REDLINE

    REDLINE longer days, plz? Veteran

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    but there's plenty of me to go 'round!
     
  10. Chaos Muffin

    Chaos Muffin Misadventure Veteran

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    Ijust use a big 3 story bookshelf, with each shelf area used for a different setting.
    All white background for one for galleries, a step display on the next for taking pics of small collections, and the 3rd one has a glass tabletop for reflection shots.

    I had some stage spotlights, with truck headlights for my lighting for ahwile, but it gpt too damn hot in there and the ol PA amp I was using for it was humming lol

    Sometimes I gen get superwhites with all the lights off and the room pitch dark.
    Put the fig closer to the wall so there wont be hardly any shadows bouncing around behind it , and hit the whole area with the highest flash. Sometimes it will oversaturate though and I need to fix the levels.

    For best results, take multiple pics of each angle and pic out the best ones for each angle.
    You'll be deleting alot of pics. They do the same with models. Snap a few hundred pics just to pick out that perfect one.

    Experimenting and having fun with it is the best way to learn. Cant really take anyones word for it until you've tried with trial and error. Some of your best pics are accidental, so trying to get it all perfect may be frustrating in the beginning.

    Cheebs would be alot of help, he does alot of photoshop, but the he does have a very nice set up and he knows how to pose those figs right. Insetad of just standing them there all in the same damn pose as each other (with one arm up holding a gun) that some like to do . He does'nt take grainy , blurry pics either and just throw a bunch of white around them.
     
  11. wheeljaxx

    wheeljaxx Banned

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    you'll see my studio this afternoon...
     
  12. Orodruin

    Orodruin @deathformer TFW2005 Supporter

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    I used to have a pic of my setup but I seem to have lost it. It's pretty similar to the others though- two pieces of white posterboard, but with a white sheet draped over the whole thing to eliminate the horizon line where the boards meet. Two goose-neck lamps, one on each side, and a third that I hold overhead, all with 60W reveal bulbs. I'd use a tripod but my table isn't deep enough.

    I think I'll take some shots this morning since they're doing WoW maintenance.
     
  13. SydneyY

    SydneyY @syd_tfw Veteran TFW2005 Supporter

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    Wow I'd love to try that one day! After I learn how to focus, that is :lol 
     
  14. wheeljaxx

    wheeljaxx Banned

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    [​IMG]
    this is Studio B. There are 3 studios. the twins, A and B, and a more commercial studio C. Studio A is set up for high key, While Studio B is set up for Lowkey. Studio C was booked this morning, so i had to use Studio B.

    in the shot you see my model, Sye, giving you all a big welcome. in the shot you can see the speetotron unit, and a few lights and bounce cards.
     
  15. Night Flame

    Night Flame TFW2005 Supporter

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    wheeljaxx, I think your 'toys' look better than mine. I would offer to trade, but my wife would kill me dead.

    I love the fact that we get everybody from pros like you, to putzes like me in here taking beautiful pictures of awesome toys. And that sometimes even us yahoos get good shots in.
     
  16. wheeljaxx

    wheeljaxx Banned

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    hey, all the shots i've taken for the cool pics thred were either taken on my kitecn table, or in my bed room with a set up thats close to what most people here have set up. only diff is i have multi-thousand $$ pro gear, and an intimate decades long affair with photoshop. and a 3 year advanced photography diploma on my wall.

    kudos for those of you who have gotten awsome shots with the " gunna blast this thing with flash and fix it in PS later" technique. it works sometimes, but, no offence, makes me cringe that alot of the time it may be just luck. i sugest if you enjoy taking pics, keep at it, and learn how to control the light. it can be contained, it can be molded, and with alot of practice, you'll never need brute force again.

    :horse: 

    camera gear, studio gear, SLR, point and shoot, it's all the same really. the reason i get good shots, is because of a passion.
    all just keep shooting, have fun, and learn and trade tips whenever possible.
     
  17. e3nine

    e3nine Poop.

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    I pieced together a ghetto lightbox from Walmart materials.

    (1) laundry hamper - $10 - used for the PVC pipe and joint pieces
    (1) piece of white cloth - $3 - used as a defuser
    (1) pack of GE Reveal bulbs - $3
    (2) metallic lamps - $4 ea

    the setup
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    the results

    before:
    [​IMG]

    after:
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  18. alphie

    alphie Veteran

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    Exactly. I LOVE playing with light. I NEVER use my flash, too me it causes to harsh of light. Light is awesome tool if one knows how to use it.
     
  19. wheeljaxx

    wheeljaxx Banned

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    real nice super sharp pics dude, but a BIT oversaturated for my taste. have they been photoshoped, or is this as is?
     
  20. e3nine

    e3nine Poop.

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    completely as is. The only thing I did in photoshop was change the image size. :) 
     

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