~Distant Avalon~ Trial shoot: I still have much to learn. + eBay Halp?

First Shot

Celize's very first photo. ^^

As per usual, you can click on the images to see them in higher resolution.

Hi guys! This is probably refreshing to most of you. No rants, no wished figures or figure pre-orders… these are actual photos that I took myself! After SUCH a long time! I don’t really think that my figure photography has been missed by many (since they’re not really that good compared to others ^^;) but I did miss taking photos of figures. After all, it’s the most practice I can get even if I don’t get out of the house!

Before I go on further, yes, I do know I’ve been lazy with blog updates lately. Most of the time, I’m active on twitter and plurk. Micro blogging just promotes laziness in one person! Not to mention because it can only consist of a sentence or two and you can do it anywhere… since you can even tweet/plurk on your mobile phone!

That pretty much isn’t an excuse to neglect my figure photography and reviews though… which is why I apologize for that .*bows*

New figures have piled up and besides from Saber Lily ~Distant Avalon~, I made it a point not to open my future incoming figures unless I actually reviewed them. At least, that’s my motivation to make reviews as of the moment. ^^;

Since acquiring my new baby, Seiya/Celize (a Lumix LX3, in case you’re wondering) last week, I have been tinkering around with her, but as proven by my photos below, I’m still PWNED by her.

Saber Lily ~Distant Avalon~

Why no blog logos? I figured the shots weren't good enough to be ripped off + I'm lazy ><;;

I have made an attempt to use some custom settings and using the Aperture priority setting for the above photo (the larger one). As you can see, Saber Lily has a yellowish tone on her… an effect of the wrong white balance setting I used, which I realized a bit late. *fails* The smaller photo on the left is how Saber Lily looks like with the intelligent Auto setting — which is, pretty intelligent.

Saber Lily ~Distant Avalon~

Large photo: initial shot; Small photo: Goal (more or less D: ) Suggestions would be greatly appreciated!

After setting up for this trial shoot, I have also realized that I needed a larger backdrop and a piece of cartolina is not enough. I have to brainstorm still what would be the ideal backdrop material I can use. Most options point to cloth, but I’d rather it would be the last option. Any suggestions?

Well, I’m taking baby steps in the transition from a point and shoot to a more advanced camera, so, hopefully, I’ll get the hang of it soon!

I feel like a total ‘tard asking this, but, would you prefer having figure reviews with me using the Auto settings for now? or would you rather see how I utilize the other custom settings? I’d like to hear your ideas :)

Halp please?: Since no one was really paying attention in Twitter, I might as well post it here too (since it is a bit more or an update post more than anything). I need help from comrades in SG, if you’re willing enough… a friend was asking me to purchase this manga for her and it’s listed on eBay.com.sg, and the seller, I think would only ship domestically. So, if anyone can help me with it, please tell me! Do not worry about the fees because I have cash on hand in my Paypal account so I can pay you right away! thank you! *bows*

21 Responses to “~Distant Avalon~ Trial shoot: I still have much to learn. + eBay Halp?”

  1. 1 zh3us May 24, 2010 at 10:54 PM

    Firstly, grats on LX3!

    I think the cloth as a backdrop’s really good.
    1) The Paper reflects light, cloth will prolly not.

    By the way, what format are you shooting in? JPEG or RAW?

    Because when you are shooting in RAW, the whole array of options become possible. These includes the changing of Color balances, tinge, Exposure, Contrast, Brightness, bla bla bla.

    IMO, the 2nd pic’s a little over exposed! Just my 2 cents. Im not very good in photography to drop protips.

    • 2 Ninjovee May 24, 2010 at 11:18 PM

      First blood reply! :D

      I guess cloth is really a good option? My problem with cloth is how to hang it… unless I use tape… o.o;

      I set my camera to save photos in JPG for now. I guess I should read up on RAWs.

      Hrm. 2nd pic is over exposed? I wonder why. I pretty much had the setup intact and I didn’t use flash at all. I guess I should be more observant. *nodnod*

      I think you’ve done great photography-wise so your comments help as well! :3 Thank you! ^^

  2. 3 PaperShot May 24, 2010 at 11:02 PM

    You could always leave your white balance to auto then edit it afterwards when you reach home.

    I can’t help with backdrops since I just use whatever is my background at that moment. u_u

    • 4 PaperShot May 24, 2010 at 11:06 PM

      Oh oh oh oh and, you might want to consider getting a white reflectable surface (no, not a mirror) as a reflector. It’ll help in smoothing out the shadows.

      Like a white kitchen board or something along those lines.

      /wonders if there’s anything else I can think of.

    • 5 Ninjovee May 24, 2010 at 11:20 PM

      Hrm. Good point, but I’d like to use as little editing as possible :3 and besides, I am shooting inside the house XDDD

      About the white reflectable surface… I was actually using a white folder for that. ._.; I guess there’s something whack with my setup today.

      If you can think of anything else, just post another comment! It helps a lot! ^^

  3. 11 Radiant May 25, 2010 at 11:15 PM

    I think your exposure levels are fine actually. What you need is a light diffuser. It looks like your light source is direct. If you put a sheet of tracing paper between the figure and the light source, the light will diffuse really nicely.

    I think leaving it on auto white balance is best, unless you’re doing something specific (like if you put a color tint gel on the light, then auto-white balance won’t work right).

    Papershot is right about the reflector. Something white, and non-reflective is suggested.

    Also, try as much as possible to zoom in on your figure rather than physically position your camera close. With point and shoot cameras, they use really wide lenses because it’s so small. But when you get that close with it, the image fish-eyes. If you zoom in instead, the image won’t distort, and you’ll also get a better depth of field.

  4. 12 Guy May 26, 2010 at 3:46 AM

    Even without the yellow tint to Saber, I prefer the blue tint to the yellow, of the background.

    Auto-shots for now, with one-two shots where you change things yourself, to show us your progress!

  5. 13 Yi May 29, 2010 at 10:10 AM

    I know nothing about photography so I can’t help much here. But I do think these photos are gorgeous shots. Great photos for a beautiful figure. I love the yellowish tone in the background!

  6. 14 Ninjovee May 29, 2010 at 7:33 PM

    Bulk reply mode~!

    @Radiant: Actually, I used the very same setup as I did with my previous shoots, which did include a tracing paper diffuser. Dx I’m unsure if it’s because I placed the lamp a little too close to Saber Lily or not.

    Hrm. Let’s see… backdrop and reflector *makes to-buy-list* any suggestions on a budget-friendly reflector? :D I’m using a white folder as of the moment.

    Thanks for the tip about close-up shots! Haha. I was positioning the camera close. How did you know that?

    Thanks for the suggestions! Will keep them in mind :D

    @Guy: The yellow tint was actually caused by wrong white balance settings. I find it odd that you see the background as blue in the AWB photo… the background is actually black. o.o;

    That’s actually a nice suggestion! And thank you for answering the question that everyone else seemed to have missed! ^^;

    @Yi: T-thank you so much for the compliment! I don’t think I deserve it that much because the effect was actually the product of a mistake ^^; I also have taken a liking to the yellow tone in the photo, but I was supposed to make a figure review and I think that showing how the actual colors of the figure would look like would be best in a review. ^^

  7. 15 Radiant May 31, 2010 at 2:36 AM

    @ninjovee: Reflectors can be a simple sheet of white paper taped to a piece of cardboard. You don’t need anything that’s highly reflective. Just enough to bounce light.

    Perhaps your light is still too strong, so the diffuser wasn’t effective enough. Yeah, try distancing the light a bit will help.

    Use a neutral color for your backdrop, as cameras with auto-exposures will read it too dark if the backdrop is black, and end up over-exposing your image, and vice versa.

    I could tell you were holding the camera close because of the wide-angle distortion. ^^

  8. 17 K June 24, 2010 at 9:04 AM

    Awesome photos! Wish I could learn to shoot like that :( my pics suck XD

  9. 18 Tommy June 25, 2010 at 2:09 PM

    Background…try using double sided tape to stick two pieces of paper together if you can’t find one big enough. I used to use cloth, but it’s too much of a hassle to maintain. ;)

  10. 19 lovelyduckie June 29, 2010 at 2:57 AM

    LOL don’t worry I have no blog logos for the same reasons. I’d be pretty surprised if anyone bothered using my images.

  11. 20 Xine July 24, 2010 at 9:45 PM

    I miss taking photos of my figs. I’ve been busy and setting up a makeshift studio for shoots can be a bit time consuming for me. ^^; I’m really not that good with my photos, it’s kinda a hit or miss thing for me sometimes. But I guess aside from knowing your camera settings, practice makes perfect so post more pics! ^^

  1. 1 Another brief test shoot! « Tangerine Tango Trackback on August 9, 2010 at 11:34 PM
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