Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Video of Modern Wood House Model

It is done!

And here the link to the Making-of video about this house

What a way to end the year 2017!

Now, I am off to the southern part of the world and will spend time in Cape Town - making new memories with old friends...
And - of course - meeting the South African mini group. Sandy, here I come!!

Happy new Year to all of you

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Photo shooting and making a video

As much as I love working on a project - coming to an end is great as well ✌✌✌

Taking photos and video shots

This was always meant to be a winter house and the snow around here came just at the right time (gone again since yesterday)! For the photo shooting I wanted some of the pix to be done outside, whilst others I did in the warm inside using a poster backdrop I photographed and had printed.
Background poster 60cm high
Outside shot
All my pictures and videos are taken with the iphone6. Most shots and definitely all videos are taken holding the phone horizontally! Nothing worse than having black voids left/right of the video picture.

- For hard-to-get-to places I use a 360° blue-tooth selfie stick. The 360° the vital feature because I really want the phone to swivel the way I need it.
- The tripod ensures really sharp takes.
- For the videos I need to be in a non-cramped position and have a steady hand. A video stabilizer like DJI Osmo would come in handy for those who are prepared to spend money.

Taking photos:
Avoiding glare and mirror effect in the large windows of the model, is always the biggest problem. That's why I sometimes close all shutters and work with borrowed photographer lamps. Not my favorite - I prefer natural daylight. But then again, it should not be too bright..
Photo shooting is a lengthy process because I try different light situations in a south/east facing room (am, pm, artificial...) to be able to select the best.
A little cramped in my 'village'...

Select and enhance shots:
Because I am not all that good (yet..) with Adobe Photoshop Elements, I perfer to use the Mac Photo program to enhance - where necessary.
But before I get to that I have to select!!! I first sort them all into room categories. And then mark those worthwhile looking at again. So it goes... until I am down to a good dozen shots per room.

Then the critical eye becomes extremely critial:
- Everything straight? No? Grr... need to re-take the shot
- Specks on the floor? Easy - use the little fix-it plaster in Mac Photos
- Is the background realistic? No? Grr... need to re-take the shot
- Is there glare? ... off into the delete baskets and take a new shot
- is the focus where I want it do be? Adobe Elements can help a bit ...
- And it is bright enough? Up to a certain extent, Mac Photos can take care of that...

Assembling the video from photos and video takes:
I do this with iMovie on my Mac. I use this since many years and the best tutorials I found are Gary's Macmost website.

I use various features of the program, such a stabilizing the video take, adjusting length of take, adjusting exposure, etc.
The photos I use (only horizontal takes!) become alive by using Ken Burns. It allows to put the focus to where is should be. iMovie does this automatically - but my choice is often different ;-)

So, this is how I finalize a model. Thought you might be interested in this.

My next blog will give you the links to the videos of this house.
Wintery and christmasy greetings from Switzerland

BTW: if anyone ever needs one of this large posters just let me know and I can either send you the file or the printed poster (on loan). These are the ones I have..

Friday, December 15, 2017

Hipster Nativity Scene

Last year, I ordered this set of figures and built a bus stop shelter as manger in 1:10.

The parcel arrived too late for printing x-mas card but since I knew that the next x-mas season is coming without fail - here a few screen shots!

And with this I wish you all a great Festive Season!

Monday, December 4, 2017

Moving patio door

Here a follow-up on today's blog (especially for Kristine from paperdollminiatures  ;-)!

How-to-do the hinges was the issue...

I decided to use black electrician tape (very sticky and is a bit elastic) to attach the panels to each other. Then I covered this with the window frame pieces, made from styrene strips.
Note: I used double sided sticky tape to attach the frame strips to the acrylic glass - after messing up a first lot with glue... ;-)

I then drilled tiny holes into the acrylic glass (2mm thinck) to insert the pins at the top and the bottom of the panels.
The grove at the top and bottom:

And that was it!

Inside complete!

The photos say it all!


please note the paperclip  ;-)


I had to re-do the light above the dining table because it was not bright enough. Pity... the original was much better...

Photographing is never easy: xxxx shots, getting extra lights, and then there is glare in the window or dust or specs on the floor ... back to starting again! What a crux being a perfectionist (only with minis!!!) ....

It seems as if the house building is coming to an end :-(

Gutters and down pipes:
I used 12mm black binding combs, glueing two together to get the half round shape
Bent the cut off rings to make the gutter holders

Working with foam board it was easy to press and glue these into the roof

Down pipes made from wood dowels. The devil is in the detail: I had to make the end part hollow...
Painting thin wood panels without warping:
I did not like the wooden walls ouside around the high windows. Easy - paint it concrete. Haha, we all know what a water based paint such as acrylic does with 1mm wood panels! I tried to to seal the wood with polymer glue but that did not work. The only solution will be to cover the entire side with a new panel: cement paint on styrene. But I first had to order more concrete paint...

Since Patricia Santi did not respond to my request for Moon Boots, I had to make them myself!
The process made me admire all those who make these cakes and stuff from polymer...

Hey, we had first reasonable snow this morning (400m a.s.l.) !! Was waiting for this because I want to take background photos for the video of the house.

And: Festive Season in full swing!
Hugs, Marion