Here is another quick modeling tip. One of the greatest pleasures of model railroading is being able to capture our work in photographs to share with family and fellow modelers.
With most scales, noticeably HO, a longer train (or even a large engine) will be in sharp focus at the front with the rest of the model blurred. To overcome this problem, a number of photos (or “stack”), can be taken at different focus points along the train and then combined into just one single photo.
The key is to keep the camera on a tripod for stability and have a remote shutter release so ALL photos are stable with just different focus points. This “stack” can then be used by any good photo program (I happen to use “Helicon Focus”) to convert the stack into one single photo.
The attached photo was accomplished in less than two minutes using my iPhone, a remote shutter release (such as the Camera 360 IOS) and the Helicon program. The front of the engine is about 4 inches from the camera while the sky line at the rear is about 14 feet away. The photo would be in even sharper focus with 10 to 15 focus points to work with but that would have taken another minute of two and I’m lazy so I used just 7 points for this photo. 😉
There are some very minor drawbacks to this procedure and I’ll be happy to address them if there is any interest. Keep your rails shiny!
“I have been watching and enjoying and learning from you emails for over three years now. I signed up to get them when I was in the planning stages for my layout. I spent three years working on it when I could and had some money to spend. Now it is coming down so we can downsize to a smaller house. So I asked my son to help me make a movie of the layout so I could remember it. I don’t know what space I will have for it in the new situation but I will build another layout.
Well the video turned out to be a great father and son project. We had a great time making it while he was home from college this summer. I saw that you don’t get many large guage train videos so I thought this might work for you.
Thanks for all you do.
Sanford, Florida, USA”
Latest ebay cheat sheet is here – and still going strong too.
I did wonder how Mark got his pics so crisp and sharp. Now I know! And it got me thinking, if there are any more photo or video tips out there, please do send them in.
And don’t forget the guide if you haven’t taken the plunge yet. Course I’m biased, but it’ll save you a small fortune and many, many hours of mistakes.
Please keep ’em coming, folks. Big thanks to Mark and Greg.