Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Warhammer 40K - Natural Scenery @ Yellowstone

Hi everyone,

During the holiday break we had the chance to take some photos with our favorite Warhammer 40K Space Marine and Space Ork using real-life scenery once again. 

(If you'd like to check out our earlier posting with the Ork and Space Marine in Germany and Denmark -- here's a quick link.)

This time we did it using Yellowstone as the backdrop.

It was a lot of fun catching the steam and gases rising from the Yellowstone geological features - and trying to make them look like battlefield smoke.

Ork:  "Jus' you an' me now!  Waaagh!!!"

Also cool that on some of the colder days the snow/ice took on some very cool (and alien looking) textures.

Ork:  "This ice-stuff pokin' through yer suit?"

Ork:  "Yeah?  Well, maybe I'ze not genetik-ally engineered like you - so what!  I ignores the cold!"

During our prior attempts had learned the trick of having a "low spot" in the middle ground.  Tried to go for this as often as possible so that the scale of the miniatures would seem as realistic as possible.

One thing which was really lucky was that we had so much snow.  It was pretty easy to take photos with the 40K miniatures on the "boardwalk" without having to catch the that surface in the photos.  Made things look much more realistic.  (The paths near almost all of the Yellowstone geological features have dedicated areas for walking - generally with railings.  Prevented us from getting the miniatures very close - but also kept the geology safe from us - and kept us away from super hot and super acidic pH geology.)

Ork:  "Bet you can't walk through that steamy stuff!"

Ork:  "Yer on!  Letz see yuze drink dat whole pool!"

One serious challenge for us (who are already amateurs at Battle Games - and now also confess to being amateurs at photography) is commanding the focal point.  We took these with a phone camera.  That was good because it was really cold out - and very fast.  So, human fingers didn't get as numb.  But, the problem was that when backgrounds had lots of cool texture it was very hard to have them in focus *and* the miniatures in focus.  Example of that challenge below.  That mud pot geological feature has all kinds of cool cracks on it - looks very much like part of an alien planet surface.  But, with the miniatures in focus some of that detail is lost.

Confession - we created the photo by jamming icicle ends into the snow (didn't come across this naturally).  Idea was to create something like Superman's Fortress of Solitude (from the first Superman movie).  Kind of worked.  In hind-sight we should have used quite a few more icicles.

Ork:  "OK - don' stick yer tongue to dose!"
Lastly, we took a ride one day - out very early - and could see all the way to the Tetons to the south.  Apologies for shifting into Hobbit thinking for a second - have to wonder if this might have been what we'd see if we were walking all the way to the Lonely Mountain!
Ork proposal for Lonely Mountain:  "My share 100%.  Yer share 10%."
Overall lots of fun.  Will try for more (less snowy) scenery for our next mission.  Also - next time, thinking of trying to have full compliments of units to stage battles!

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