Wednesday, January 2, 2013

How I photograph my miniatures, a glimpse into my world :-)

As I keep running into learning curve issues with the filming of our miniature painting DVD's for the Kickstarter, I was reminded of how long it took me to perfect the still photography of our miniatures!

All of you loyal Wappellians will recognize my typical "multiview" images that have graced the pages of this blog, CoolMiniOrNot, and many other sites.

Today I have a post for you that demonstrates how I go about doing that:

This process was devloped over thousands and thousands of photographs and 13 years.  I guess this is why those "moving picture shows" are proving to be less easy!!!

While these photos are not as fancy as the ones you see on CMON and other sites, I don't have time to screw around with those methods.  I need to have the figures shot in a very consistent way, since many of them are part of continuing projects over the course of several years.  A sudden shift in backdrops, etc., would make it really difficult to get a true comparison of the colors.

So, I hope this is helpful!  Gee, will I have to shoot a DVD of this process too?  He he... :-)


  1. Oh Photoshop... You are the cause of and solution to every mini painter's macro photography problems. I hate/love you. When did you finally settle on one back drop? I still have a several depending on the size of unit/mini I am shooting and can't decide on a darker or lighter neutral tone.

    1. The white to blue backdrop was determined many years ago. Since I painted for a mini company that used that color for their backdrops, it meant I had to be consistent with theirs.

      I do have a bigger one that I printed out, but if I need to go larger, I just use a sheet of hot press drawing paper. Now that I am doing more large scale things, it seems, I may try to get some lightly tinted pastel paper as a backdrop...

      One of the big reasons I want white to be in the color mix for my backdrop is that it is very easy for me to color correct. If the backdrop looks white in my image, than I know the colors are right! :-)

  2. Why are you shooting from so far away? That is a lot of wasted pixel area, and your focal depth is probably narrow enough as it is. Depending on how you do your color balancing, that is also a lot of 'clutter' that will muck up the histogram.

    1. You have to be at that distance in order to keep the focal area broadened. Believe me, that was all discovered by trial and error. :-) The extra space is cropped away when needed. There are times that I use that extra space to do inserts of close ups and such. It is best to have that area, instead of having to rebuild it later on.