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Thursday, 2 July 2020

Photo play.

Today I purchased a small LED flood lamp that you can adjust the colour temperature for daylight or warm. I am still trying to learn how to create shots around the layout that look a little life like and get a reasonable depth of field. Lighting is the other challenge, up until now I have been shooting with the available room lighting which is LED fluro equivalent and sometimes let in a little morning sun. Occasionally I will set up flashes, soft boxes or umbrellas - but its a lot of mucking around that is becoming more awkward as the layout grows and available space diminishes.

A couple of aspects I played with today were trying to replicate where the sun would be in real life on  the various areas from Camden to Narellan. One of the aims was to create a golden hour type effect and dark storm type lighting.  The layout is currently bits and pieces with large sections of unfinished scenery and detail not to mention no backdrop for most of it. This makes it quite difficult to capture a tight little scene that appears finished so the lesson here is start finishing things off - only trouble is it takes so long.

I tend to use a 35mm equivalent of 24-80mm f2.8 zoom and focus stacking to get the required depth of field and this is still taking time to become competent at. The camera is able to do this internally, a big improvement over trying to do it in Photoshop. There are many parameters that can be tweaked to  set the range of depth of field and after reviewing the camera manual and google searches may be a little closer to getting this right.

The other approach is to photograph your model as you would on the real thing, basically track level or some realistic vantage point that did exist such as a loading bank (none of those helicopter shots - although todays drones allow overhead shots).

Got a little bit more fencing done and a good deal on eBay for a bulk purchase of 10 x 0.6mm drills for continuing more fencing.

Thats it for now some pics below taken around Kirkham. The bloke on the motorbike is a train spotter !





Wednesday, 1 July 2020

Chipping away.

3034 stops at Elderslie on a late afternoon down passenger.
Elderslie station has now been added and again some basic scenic work done. There is a small section of post and rail fence on the the Camden Valley Way road side of the building, a small picket fence enclosure at the Camden end of the platform and a power pole with a fluro light to be added.

Been experimenting with fences using old rail craft code 55 rail and some north eastern timber. These are proving painful and fiddly to build - been using little electric drill and burnt the first drill out after drilling about 70 holes in the rail. Threading is prooving a challenge as is manual dexterity the joys of  aging. The rail posts are spaced at 30 ft intervals with 5 timber suspended posts between each pair of rails. Fencing wire is a fine nylon thread that has been painted dark grey. The timber suspended posts were glued on with Selleys acrylic Kwik Grip. I have about 15 metres more of this fencing to install.

Another view of 3034 with down passenger coming into Elderslie  note the new fence and home made tree.
I have started to make my own trees again, using heavy electrical wire which is soldered in key areas then covered with liquid nails before being painted. Woodland scenics Fine - Leaf Foliage is the glued to the branches. This is an excellent product - a tad expensive and I will probably get 4-6 trees from a packet. There are dozens of trees on the layout - the more expensive Woodland trees are very good particularly after repainting the trunks. The more inexpensive ones are a bit like lollypops and require a fair bit of rework to look like Australian trees and shrubs and will probably replace many of these trees with home made ones at some point.

Another view of 3034 with down passenger slowing into Elderslie.

There was a landmark signal somewhere near the Elderslie station. The signal plan shows it on the left if approaching Camden, whereas my interpretation of some of Weston Langford photos suggest it was on the right of the track as per Camden home signal - Anyone know the exact location of this landmark?

 It was quite an elaborate landmark on a white signal post with black base, finial, lamp and ladder, a similar one can be seen on the cover of "Pansy the Camden Tram" near Campbelltown.

Until next time stay well, happy modelling