Friday, 28 May 2010
Improvements this year for those who might have seen the layout before are improved brighter lighting, rejuvenated scenery, a traverser fiddle yard to replace the scary cassettes (scary because I could see a whole train becoming airborne all too easily) and a couple of extra items of rolling stock.
Oh yes, and before I pack it all into the car, I managed to do one more carriage, this time in RED, Ford Rosso Red to be precise which I gather is a dead ringer for BR carmine. Job done!
Wednesday, 26 May 2010
Much use was made of the technique of 'working' the almost set enamel used for weathering when it's slightly putty like as in a recent article in Model Rail by resident model maker extaordinaire George Dent.
The carriage here started off with an all over coat of cream (Halford's Peugeot Antelope Beige), various brown enamels were then applied with a small stiff brush working vertically until the paint almost set to give a streaky effect. Finally Ronseal Satin Black (water soluble when wet) was then applied and then brushed off with a 2 inch decorator's brush. All was sealed in with Railmatch Matt Varnish from an aerosol.
After much though its replacement is a new traverser yard which allows 4 complete trains to be stored, access to each road being a simple sliding action.
Monday, 24 May 2010
Most digital still cameras now have the option of being able to record video, with some of the very latest cameras being potentially capable of outperforming conventional video cameras. Indeed, some of the new breed of DSLRs are used in commercial HDTV production, with the large sensor giving a narrow depth of field much like a 35mm motion pictures camera like an Arri - something that is very much favoured by drama producers.
The above short clip however doesn't get anywhere near HD or even low definition VHS, it simply being just a bit of fun to see if I can get a bit of movement onto the web.
Tuesday, 18 May 2010
Captured in the midday sun, 'Hercules' a Kerr Stuart 0-4-0T rescued from Hampton Waterworks trundles across the wharf at Arne on the Isle of Purbeck with a short rake of gravel trucks. Shortly after this photo was taken the summer skies turned into a thunderstorm.
Thursday, 13 May 2010
I’ve always rather liked the look of Swedish varnished wooden passenger stock, and looking at the design of these Bachmann Zillertalbahn carriages suggests that with a bit of work such a wooden finish would suit them rather well. I love that rose tinted parallel universe!
Watch this space...........
Wednesday, 12 May 2010
Whilst I’m not sure it looks totally British in style, it maybe could pass as something UK built for export to the colonies. My story is that it came back from war torn France after the Great War.
Monday, 10 May 2010
Friday, 7 May 2010
The little 3ft x 2ft 009 gauge micro has not been out for a couple of years, and what's more it's the only layout of mine that had until today not received a facelift with static grass and Noch Grasmaster.
In addition to new grass, I've updated the built in lighting, the 2 clear blue tinted 100w bulbs being replaced with a 2 ft 18w fluorescent strip and a single 100 incandescent bulb. Why? Well, the 2 clear blue bulbs were very harsh and created double shadows on everything, and more importantly as the expire it's going to be increasingly difficult to replace them.
The new mix of strip lighting gives me an even cool base, and the new single 100w providing a slightly warmer 'sun' with just one shadow. The close up shot here was taken under the new lighting - no studio lights! The static grass is also highlighted well here too - so much better than the popular ground foam ground cover which look nothing like grass!
Monday, 3 May 2010
Over the last couple of weeks I've been messing about with Helicon Focus, the inexpensive layer stacking software, which when combined with photographs specifically taken for it can extend depth of field enourmously - in fact pretty well as much as you'd like!
The shot above was taken on a 'point and shoot' Canon G9, one of the more recent relatively inexpensive small cameras aimed at the enthusiast photographer - of course any camera could be used, but I want to highlight the fact that you didn't need anything big and posh, because technique is the all important thing rather than kit.
At this level of closeup the loco is probably bigger on your screen here than in real life if you click on the image then select 'all sizes' to reveal a decent sized view. It's not going to be possible to get everything in focus; so by shooting a few identical frames, but focussed on key spots, and then with the aid of Helicon Focus to combine the images one can create a greater depth of field. For this particular shot, three identical photographs were taken, the first focussed on the buffers, the second on the cab, and the final on the rear of the red van. The software then takes care of the rest on the computer - simple!
The sky however was added in post production, it's far prettier than the wardrobe that was behind the section layout which was on the floor simply bathed in natural window light!
Sunday, 2 May 2010
An ex Lancashire & Yorkshire Railway 'Pug' No 51202 shunts the wharf sidings at Combwich in early October 1955.
The loco is a repainted a detailed up Hornby, the van a Chivers Finelines LNER Dia 120 4W BY Pigeon Brake Van kit.
The photograph is 3 identically composed shots, but focussed on different key points. The images were then combined with 'Helicon Focus' to extend the depth of field. Natural window light was used. The sky has been added as an extra layer to hide the spare bedroom wall.
Microscale Kristal Klear used for the upper window lights rather than trying to cut out clear plastic sheet and insert into the recesses on the rear of the side mouldings.
To get the patina, after painting with Railmatch BR Crimson (aka carmine), the van was numbered with HMRS Pressfix transfers and then sealed under a thin coat of Railmatch aerosol Matt Varnish. Then, a water based mix of matt black and brown matt emulsion, diluted 70/30 with water and a dash of washing up liquid was slopped over and hastily wiped off with kitchen towel to leave the pigment in the groves. To get the slightly orange faded effect so often seen, some matt Humbrol signal red was drybrushed very lightly onto the raised surfaces.
The roof was treated in a similar fashion, using Humbrol matt enamels - initially dark grey, and then drybrush on with a lighter grey leaving the darker grey exposed around the torpedo vents and rainstrip.
Aerosol matt varnish was again misted on very lightly to seal the water based paint in and to produce a haze over the windows.
All that's needed now are brake and presumedly steam heating pipes on the ends.