Friday, May 25, 2012

Plague Marines – Part the Second

Group Shot 5 
I just finished my second squad of Ye Olde Plague Marines.  This group is a kit bash of a standard CSM box and a WFB Zombies box, both of which I got with my soft-score winnings from the Bay Area Open (Thanks again, Dan!).  BTW, I really like the GW Plaguer sculpts, but absolutely hate Failcast.  But that’s been covered elsewhere on the interwebs, I’m sure.

The WFB Zombie box is a pretty good kit, if repetitive.  I think it was 5 identical sprues with the standard zombie parts and 1 sprue of command stuff, things like war banners and drums I think.  That said, there’s a bunch of good bits: a few scythes, lots of rotten body parts, and a grip of headstones.  Buying this kit had a dual purpose: provide bits for this new PM squad and provide me with 20 zombie-themed Lesser Deamons (hopefully, they’ll still be useful when the codex drops).  More on the LDs later.

Being zombie-inspired I wanted them to have a more close combat look and feel.  I left the bolters off, for the most part, and gave them pistols & chain swords or mutated/rotten arms instead.

I did use a Tentacle Maker on a couple of them to add some extra detail. 

Joel at Frontline gave me a short lesson on extreme highlighting a few weeks ago and I think I put what I learned to fair effect on these guys.  I started with a black primer base, an olive/military green dry brush from dark to light, and then I did the details and highlighting over the top of it all with Goblin Green and Snot Green and some Skull White/Snot Green mixes.  The basing is my standard coarse black sand and some diorama weeds and such.

Gutz Front 2 
Gutz Back ___________________________________________________________

Ol1Eye F1 
Ol1Eye B1

BN Front 1 
BN Back 1 ___________________________________________________________

SR F2 

GA F1 

DK F1 

Photo Graphy

You may have noticed that the macro photography on this blog has gotten better.  I recently purchased a Nikon Cool Pix L22 based on some interweb research.  Generally, what I found was that it was one of the best low-cost macro camera’s available.  This info was spot-on!  I paid about $100.00 (US) for the thing and it is well worth it.
  • 12 Mp
  • Takes still and video
  • Very user-friendly
  • Big screen on the back
  • Chock full of features (like the super easy Macro function)


My wife’s 35mm Canon Rebel is good, but the learning curve is super-steep.  Plus, if you want to take the best macro shots possible, you need special macro lenses which can cost $300 to $3000 each!

This L22 took great photos out of the box!  The only photography problem I currently have is getting the lighting right.  This part takes me a loooong time to do.  But once it’s done, it’s done.  If you’re in the market for a macro camera, I highly recommend the Cool Pix L22.

Things I’ve learned using the L22 macro function:
  • Group shots need to be done at about 12” range with strong lighting.  This deepens the field of focus so you can see all the models.
  • Individual shots are at about 4” from the lens with very strong lighting.  For some reason, the single models needed me to be right on top of them and lit with blinding lights.  Not sure why, but it worked OK.
  • All lighting should be from the front of the camera, i.e. no light shining from behind or down from the top.
  • Use the timer!  Every time you press the button you shake the camera.  Macro is not very forgiving of shaking, so use the timer.  This way you won’t even be touching the camera when it snaps the shot.
  • Use a tripod/base of some sort.  Steady!
  • Put a mark on the spot where you will be placing your models so you can put each model in the same focal plane every time.  You can erase the mark with your photo editing software later, if need be.
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