Miniature Illustration Scene

Dock scene with man and schooner produced with custom built miniatures and models

Yep, here’s that same old dock scene. All custom built miniatures and painted backdrop. I still haven’t done final touchups, but the foggy and fog-free images are composited. Soon it will be ready for print.

I am also building structural elements for the iceberg scene, photos of that will be forthcoming.

Photos for Final Dock Scene

I don’t have the very final image composited yet, but I did take the photos. This image is the foggy version of the final shot. After I took several shots with my regular lighting/environmental setup, I took several with different levels of fog‚ÄĒcreated by my fog machine. I was sort of afraid the neighbors might get concerned when I turned the fan on to air it out and smoke started to billow out of window. Apparently, they have seen me doing enough strange things that they weren’t concerned.
I will be compositing one of the non-atmospheric shots with this one so that I can control the depth and atmosphere and still be able to work with full contrast where I need it.

Sorry I am not revealing everything at once.

Scene of miniature models and maquette. Dock with man ship and supplies.

Miniature Dock Setup

Setup of elements for miniature scene illustration with dock, quay, ship, man, supplies etc.

This still isn’t the final image. However, I have most of the elements finished and am setting them up. I still have the painted backdrop to add and need to figure out the lighting. Luckily, because everything in the shot is static, I can use a longer exposure and don’t have to worry as much about getting daylight levels with my lights in the little back room studio.

Things are coming together, I just need to finish this one off and then get moving on subsequent images ūüėČ ¬†P.S. If you haven’t been following my blog hitherto, everything pictured here is hand made, custom for this illustration.

Miniature Illustration Rush Job

Image of miniature man maquette made from sculpey wire leather and fur. Photographed outdoor in winter.

As I have been saying in some of my recent posts, I am working on building miniature sets and models to create a series of illustrations. ¬†This image isn’t from that series, but it was a sort of test run to see if the concept was a valid way for me to work. ¬†I also wanted to try submitting something in that style to the Society of Illustrators Student Competition. ¬†It just so happened that the day I started working on the image was also the deadline for the competition. that means I had to finish it in a matter of hours and get it photographed before the sun went down.

I ended up cutting a lot of corners on the construction.  I had to give him a bundle of dowels to carry instead of the rifle I had been planning on making. I was also planning on photographing him at a frozen lake. Unfortunately, the road to the lake was closed for construction.  I decided I would try to take some shots next to the railroad tracks where I had stopped. I was soon sent away by a railroad worker who informed me that I was trespassing and might distress the train engineers because, apparently, people who wander near railroad tracks sometimes have tragic intentions.  The light was then failing and I decided my only option was to cross the valley and drive up the mountain to a point where the sun would still reach me.  I did and this is one of the shots I got (magical sparkles added for emphasis).

Anyway, it wasn’t accepted to the Society show, but I had a good time making it, and learned some things that are proving useful in my current endeavors.