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07-03-2020, 02:04 PM - 27 Likes   #1
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How I photograph Scale Models and other objects

(X-posted from the 6MP club)


I don't usually do video. But I shot a quick and dirty video for some friends in another forum who asked me about photographing scale models; my other hobby. My K100D Super did a cameo appearance on my video.
I absolutely hate my accent, more than my voice. In my mind I speak like James Earl Jones or Morgan Freeman
Actually English is my second language.
This is not exactly a gear oriented video but more of technique.
I hope you like it.

Here are some samples of my work over the years:

1/24 scale

1/35 scale

1/48 scale

1/25 scale

1/25 scale

1/100 scale

1/350 scale


Last edited by ismaelg; 11-24-2020 at 08:14 PM.
07-03-2020, 02:10 PM   #2
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Wow, very nice work!
07-03-2020, 02:30 PM   #3
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Good work! I have been needing to make a stage like that for years. Your demonstration may provide the incentive I need to actually do it.

07-03-2020, 02:39 PM   #4
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Very impressive. In most of the images, I would not have thought they were photographs of scale models without looking for evidence that they were.

07-03-2020, 03:04 PM - 1 Like   #5
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Nice pix.

Your lighting will be more diffuse (if that's what you want), but perhaps a bit fainter, if you move your side speedlights farther away from the diffusing material. That results in a more uniform illumination of the diffusing screen.
07-03-2020, 06:20 PM   #6
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The detail with the posters is amazing. Very nice work!
07-03-2020, 07:28 PM   #7
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And I thought you were only a good photographer! Very nice!
07-04-2020, 06:19 AM - 1 Like   #8
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I think you did a great job.

In a future installment I would like to see an example of the setup and lighting for the poster and tile floor examples. Assuming that you do another... It is a lot of work.

07-04-2020, 07:16 AM   #9
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Great job! Thanks for the video; I've been thinking of making such a box for a while and I might finally give it a go.
07-04-2020, 07:31 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by ismaelg Quote
Here are some samples of my work over the years:
May I congratulate you on your model-making skills and excellent photography? There is a lot of fine detail, and the 'showroom' props lend an extra air of realism. Very well done!

Nothing wrong with your video, in my opinion.

- Craig

Last edited by c.a.m; 07-04-2020 at 07:36 AM.
07-04-2020, 02:38 PM - 1 Like   #11
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Man...those two Corvettes look like the real thing! I would never have known they were models without you revealing it. Are those simulated light switches on the wall behind the white one? And the photograph on the wall behind it adds to the realism. Brilliant! Great job!
07-04-2020, 07:49 PM   #12
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You have very impressive works!

English is my 2nd or even 3rd language but I can completely understand your presentation
07-07-2020, 07:37 AM - 4 Likes   #13
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Original Poster
Thank you all for your nice comments! I'm a bit surprised this topic became very popular at both the photography and scale modeling forums. If I had known I'd have dressed and shaved
Something I did not mention in the video but some of you have commented, the position of the lights have a great effect on the overall look. The top light is not resting on the box. It is a few inches from it. But the main light sources are the strobes. Depending on the subject and the desired effect I play with the strobes height, horizontal position and distance from the box.
For example, if I want a very soft light with almost no shadow, the strobes will be farther away and pointing up:

or no strobes at all and use a slow shutter speed (tripod of course)

However, if I am replicating an outdoor scene, I may want a defined shadow. For this I use only 1 strobe from the top, close to the box. (In Tatooine you should see double shadows but that's another topic)

If you are depicting say a hangar with multiple lights, then both strobes from the top but farther away may be needed.

It all depends on what you are trying to achieve. The most critical part is to have fun with it

And one more thing, white balance will set the mood not only for this but for any picture.


Last edited by ismaelg; 07-10-2020 at 07:49 AM.
07-10-2020, 05:11 AM   #14
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Impressive. I often take pictures of small objects like mechanisms, usually using a M100 macro lens. I find the main problem is depth of field - I want it all in focus from front to back, but even with the smallest aperture it is difficult.
11-22-2020, 03:11 AM - 1 Like   #15

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The camera is a fantastic tool for creative people with imagination and ingenuity. I'm sure nothing really new here but it is great to watch stuff like this for ideas and inspiration.

Thanks Ismael!

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