16. November 2016 by · Comments Off on Figure Photo Fight 39: Persona 3 – Aegis – 1/6 – ART WORKS (Alter) · Categories: Photo Shoots · Tags: , , ,

Warning: saturation abuse ahead.


Neil’s challenge:

This figure has a lot of subtle detail in the shading in the face, the sparkles in the hair plastic and the printing on the eyes. Your task is to do a portrait shot with high contrast, saturation and sharpness to make those details POP.

I asked him if I could add creative lighting to the toolbox to make the face on this figure jump out and he OK’d it, so I employed a trick I learned a long time ago with this figure – the addition of a fluorescent “black” light has a tendency to make some of the whites and reds really scream. It was also responsible for that purple cast on the back of my lightbox, but fortunately I think it mostly worked out.

Most of the work happened in post, though, which I suspect is what Neil had in mind. The contrast here is about half as amplified as I usually go with when touching up every day photos, and likewise the saturation is high enough to make me want to stare down my nose and sneer. The irises especially – for whatever reason they just wanted to come out flat, so I selected them individually and really kicked them in the ass, it’s about a 50% boost. As for sharpness – I added very little. The sparkles in the hair came out on their own, as much as they were ever going to (as mine, at least, have faded slightly over time), and the addition of sharpness beyond about 2% served to do nothing other than introduce grain.

If this is his revenge for my asking him to oversaturate his last photo fight shot, man did he ever get it.

05. February 2016 by · Comments Off on Figure Photo Fight 33 – Kotobukiya Sakuya Mode:Seraphim · Categories: Photo Shoots · Tags: , , ,


The challenge from Jeff for Photo Fight 33 described the visual style of the games from which my figure comes. Kotobukiya’s Sakuya Mode:Seraphim comes from Shining Ark, part of the long running Shining series with character art by Tony Taka. In reference to the visual elements from the game, Jeff challenged,

Build a background incorporating some or all of these themes. Dealers choice as to how to do it.

More »

11. September 2015 by · Comments Off on Figure Spotlight: Kotobukiya “Fairy Garden” Annabel 1/6 · Categories: Photo Shoots, Unboxing · Tags: , ,

c1826 More »

11. June 2015 by · Comments Off on Figure Photo Fight 30 – Good Smile Sonico · Categories: Photo Shoots · Tags: , ,


Our 30th Photo Fight afforded me the opportunity to put Good Smile Company’s amazing Sonico After Party ver. in front of the camera. Despite being pretty straight forward, this was a fun shoot. Jeff’s challenge included a lot of parameters this time:

  • Single source lighting
  • Include the amplifier
  • No F stop higher than 10
  • Use a fixed lens

More »

18. November 2014 by · Comments Off on Figure Photo Fight 25 – A+ – Super Pochaco – 1/6 – Beer Girl ver. · Categories: Photo Shoots · Tags: , , ,


Neil’s 25th challenge to me involved the A+ Beer Girl Pochaco, and was as follows:

BEER! It can be in a bottle, in a can, in a glass or any other way you like, 
but your shot must have actual beer in it.

Well, that’s speaking my language. I’m a little late for Oktoberfest, but I’d been planning a shot a lot like this anyway, so I’ll use it as a convenient excuse. The secret to this shot is now that I’m done I’m drinking the beer.

30. September 2014 by · Comments Off on Figure Photo Fight 20 – Mami, Eren, Armin, Levi & Mikasa · Categories: Photo Shoots · Tags: , , , ,


Jeff gave me four figures for our twentieth Photo Fight and I added a fifth. With Mami, Eren, Armin, Levi and (added by me ’cause she matched), Mikasa, the goal was to:

Pit them against each other in an over-merchandising battle for the ages

Five figures in one photo!

More »

28. September 2014 by · Comments Off on Figure Spotlight: Vertex Super Pochaco 1/6 Cowgirl · Categories: Unboxing · Tags: , ,


Unprofessional question: is Pochaco supposed to be American? It wouldn’t be a stretch, given the way Japanese artists often portray female characters that are meant to be American. It’s the box art that got me thinking.

The Vertex Super Pochaco Cowgirl version was released on August 29, 2014 at an MSRP of ¥11000. Pre-orders for a December re-release opened on October 17, 2014, also at an MSRP of ¥11000.

This is a cast off figure and as such this post contains not-safe-for-work material. Please browse appropriately.

More »

06. September 2014 by · Comments Off on Figure Spotlight: A+ Super Pochaco – 1/6 – Beer Girl ver. · Categories: Unboxing · Tags: , , ,

Nitroplus figures catch a lot of flak for being basically pure advertising, and it’s a fair criticism. Pochaco specifically catches a second helping for being a lot fuller figured than… well nearly everything you’ll ever see in casual anime fandom, and you can’t really look at any post or page about the character without seeing someone joking or complaining about her build. We’re not going to do that here. I think she’s an adorable character and intend to continue to buy every figure that my budget can manage.

Thanks to the way my retailer of choice handles combined orders, I’m well past a month late on getting this figure. Past the jump, we’ll see if it was worth the wait.

More »

23. August 2014 by · Comments Off on Figure Photo Fight 13 – Kaitendoh Kousaka Tamaki · Categories: Photo Shoots · Tags: , ,


Pardon the large file size this time, I haven’t cropped or edited my photo. That’s because Jeff’s challenge encouraged doing all the work in-camera.

ƒ 3.2. Crack that lens wide open and give us something soft and intimate.

But it wasn’t as simple as all that… More »

28. June 2014 by · Comments Off on Figure Photo Fight 5: Alter KOS-MOS – 1/6 – Swimwear Ver. · Categories: Photo Shoots · Tags: , ,


This week’s challenge involved Alter’s 1/6 KOS-MOS Swimwear ver., and the hook was “Wetness. The figure doesn’t have to have water on it, but the photo must evoke the concept of water or wetness.”

This was kind of my plan C, so I don’t have a lot to say about it. I used a mister loaded with distilled water to get the drops on the figure and gently used a cotton swab to remove them from the swimsuit (where water would not naturally bead, were this a person). The takeaway for the week is that water is really, really hard to work with.