In A Forest Darkly – One and a Half Heroes

At long last I decided to upgrade my camera equipment from a Smartphone to a proper mirrorless setup. I really liked my old Canon Powershot until it finally gave up. After a proper send off and a few years without a dedicated camera, I first looked again at Canon. Long story short, after many days and reading copious amounts of reviews, I went for Fujifilm instead. The X-T3 is a beast. Uncropped 4k video recording (yes, I hope there will be video tutorials in the future) and a really nice and versatile kit objective make this a nice allrounder. In the future more lenses can add even more versatility.

I still lack a proper tripod and lighting setup, but I wanted to take some scenic test shots of Nienna and Lem.

Camera settings: ISO 160, F-10, 0.63s exposure.

Light: Late afternoon daylight close to a window (white card to bounce light back).

Background: Hand-drawn pastel background.

To mix it up a tad I will post scenic shots of old and new minis between longer articles. The demands of work, toddlers and life in general limit my hobby time, but a few cool shots here and there I can always squeeze in. Enjoy and feel free to comment below if you have praise, suggestions or constructive criticism in terms of scene arrangement, settings etc.

Lem Halfling Bard, Reaper Miniatures
Nienna Elfen Ranger, Reaper Miniatures

9 thoughts on “In A Forest Darkly – One and a Half Heroes”

  1. Those are excellent photos! The style reminds me of HVM Workbench who has made a reputation on having extremely nice photos of minis in scenic environments. I’d say your camera purchase was well worth it!

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thank you! High praise indeed. HVM inspired me to take scenic shots in the first place. If I sort out the lighting and get a tripod my journey to match HVM’s excellence can continue.

      I honestly think that a good smartphone camera can match any mirrorless for single miniature photos, WIP’s etc.

      However, if you need control over the depth of field, aperture or ISO the issue might be that smartphones usually have a fixed objective /lens. So you can change this software wise, but not physically.

      Given my Smartphone camera was kinda meh in any case with heavy processing and artefacts I also enjoy the ability to take RAW pictures. It is amazing how you can rescue a slightly overexposed shot and get all the detail back.

      Liked by 3 people

  2. Lovely work and great composition.
    That Fuji certainly is a beast! I’m thinking of changing my camera – currently Pentax Kx DSLR – as I broke the flash gun and can’t get a reasonably priced replacement since all new cameras use the new single point hotshoe.
    The quality of the picture I take has dropped off without the flash, it makes such a difference being able to bounce it off something, or use it as a fill flash.
    You can’t beat a DSLR – or mirrorless as is the case nowadays – for depth of field, as you’ve demonstrated here – that backdrop works really well.
    Anyway, looking forward to seeing more 😀

    Liked by 2 people

    1. So far I did not experiment with flash, but it does sound interesting. How do you go about it when taking pictures of miniatures? External flash, a diffuser and mounting it above the scene? The Fuji has a flash included that fits the hotshoe. This would then be frontal flash which seems not the best solution.

      Painting those backdrops is good fun. I still need a neutral forest one and a pastoral landscape.

      Smartphones are pretty good these days in terms of depth of field. I guess it is mostly due to the construction of the lense and its small aperture. That said, I don’t think you get up to an equivalent of F/22.

      The other thing with the Fuji were the video capabilities. So if you focus more on photos anyway the Canon M50 is apparently quite good.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. The flash I had could be used off camera and fired when the built in flash fired, though I rarely used it that way.
        The flash was full adjustable, up-down, and 360° rotation. I’d set miniatures up in my light tent with lamps either side. Then I’d either bounce the flash off the ceiling of the tent or have it directly on the miniatures as a fill – this worked really well to make a miniature pop from a blank background, making a black or white background intense and opaque.
        Sadly, I have to make the best use of the built in flash now, which means I lose the intensity of the shot, but it has speeded up my photo taking as I no longer bother with the lamps and all.
        I’ve never used a background other than a blank canvas, having seen your work here, though, I must give it a try – love it!

        Liked by 2 people

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