Henjin_Quilones

CDC1 Tale: The Hiding of the Druid Shrine

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Long ago, dark and dim in the shadows of history, the land of Avalonia was inhabited by powerful Druids. But over the years, their numbers declined, and declined, until only one was left. Using all the power left in his old body, and the powers of his brethren stored in the stone of his staff, he cast one final spell, hiding the greatest treasure of the Druids and their most sacred shrine from the world. 

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No one has ever found the shrine, hidden somewhere in the mist-shrouded Mystic Isles, nor the treasure it contains, though many have spent or lost their lives looking...

 

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C&C welcome, and all that. This build spiraled out of control, measuring at final count something like 110x80 studs. And I have now sworn off immersive landscape builds...

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Lovely landscape with lots to see, all the details are awesome and everywhere I look I find new details, great one!

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Great effect with the lighting, looks great.  The rock work is wonderful.  Nice waterfall and stream.  The trees and plants with the varying leaves and sizes is a nice touch and gives some depth to the build.  

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Great legend!  I can see how it would inspire many to spend their lives looking for such a mystic treasure.  All the vegetation is terrific - there is just enough color in it to balance out the scene.  The water turned out very well in this photo.

On 5/8/2021 at 10:11 PM, Henjin_Quilones said:

This build spiraled out of control

I hate when that happens - and it happens all too frequently lately.

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Gorgeous!  Good to see you building for the guilds again!  The lighting is fantastic, and the irregular rock cliffs and hang of the trees is very natural.  I like your coloration of the waterfall, too.  Nice posing of the mini too, I like the outstretched hands.  I hear you on the spiraling out of control.  The lighting and dimensions are very similar to my pool room build, and I remember that thing kept getting bigger.  Not to mention that, but you have more detail in all your vegetation and rockwork than I did.  I'd shudder to know how long this took you.  Great work, and I hope to see more of you around here again soon!

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This is really awesome--impressive rockwork, lovely trees, beautiful waterfall (the yellow behind it is gorgeous) and great minifigure pose.  Also, I have to point out the "beach" landscaping, dark tan and olive was a great call, rather than going straight rocks to the water's edge everywhere.

I don't want to detract from my praise by my criticism, so if I sound negative here, go re-read the praise--it's truly a fantastic build!  But there's something that feels unnatural to me about the presentation.  The lighting is so harsh, and so white.  It glares too much off the rock, I think, and definitely glares too much off the trees... trees shouldn't glare.  And also, I wish there were more peripheral blur.  And what time of day is this?  Why is the sky black?  The overall feeling I get is not nighttime, but that's sending mixed signals.  I see that the light is coming magically from inside the circle, and that makes good sense, but I wish it were more contained.  By glaring off the circle rocks and the far rocks behind, it makes them hard to distinguish from each other.  The MOC itself is really cool... and the fact that there is some unique lighting is also cool... I just wish it looked a little more... real, for lack of a better word.

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On 5/9/2021 at 1:44 AM, Servertijd said:

Lovely landscape with lots to see, all the details are awesome and everywhere I look I find new details, great one!

Thanks!

On 5/9/2021 at 7:15 PM, zoth33 said:

Great effect with the lighting, looks great.  The rock work is wonderful.  Nice waterfall and stream.  The trees and plants with the varying leaves and sizes is a nice touch and gives some depth to the build.  

Thank you, glad you like it!

19 hours ago, jtooker said:

Great legend!  I can see how it would inspire many to spend their lives looking for such a mystic treasure.  All the vegetation is terrific - there is just enough color in it to balance out the scene.  The water turned out very well in this photo.

I hate when that happens - and it happens all too frequently lately.

Thanks for your feedback during the build process! The legend itself is one of the official bits of Avalonia lore since the beginning of the guild, so I thought I’d finally bring it to life. 

9 hours ago, Grover said:

Gorgeous!  Good to see you building for the guilds again!  The lighting is fantastic, and the irregular rock cliffs and hang of the trees is very natural.  I like your coloration of the waterfall, too.  Nice posing of the mini too, I like the outstretched hands.  I hear you on the spiraling out of control.  The lighting and dimensions are very similar to my pool room build, and I remember that thing kept getting bigger.  Not to mention that, but you have more detail in all your vegetation and rockwork than I did.  I'd shudder to know how long this took you.  Great work, and I hope to see more of you around here again soon!

Thanks, Grover! The cliffs were the hardest part of this for me, such a slog attaching all the different bits with mixel joints. But of course the back has to get wider to allow for the wide shot, and ugh, it keeps going! 

9 hours ago, Kai NRG said:

This is really awesome--impressive rockwork, lovely trees, beautiful waterfall (the yellow behind it is gorgeous) and great minifigure pose.  Also, I have to point out the "beach" landscaping, dark tan and olive was a great call, rather than going straight rocks to the water's edge everywhere.

I don't want to detract from my praise by my criticism, so if I sound negative here, go re-read the praise--it's truly a fantastic build!  But there's something that feels unnatural to me about the presentation.  The lighting is so harsh, and so white.  It glares too much off the rock, I think, and definitely glares too much off the trees... trees shouldn't glare.  And also, I wish there were more peripheral blur.  And what time of day is this?  Why is the sky black?  The overall feeling I get is not nighttime, but that's sending mixed signals.  I see that the light is coming magically from inside the circle, and that makes good sense, but I wish it were more contained.  By glaring off the circle rocks and the far rocks behind, it makes them hard to distinguish from each other.  The MOC itself is really cool... and the fact that there is some unique lighting is also cool... I just wish it looked a little more... real, for lack of a better word.

Thanks, Geneva! The waterfall light is a light brick shining down through transparent clear (and not-so-clear yellowed ones from the 60s) bricks. Your brother thought that I should find a way to make the waterfall stand out, and that’s what I came up with. Glad it works.

As for the rest, I agree that the lighting is a bit confusing. My intention with the black sky and dark trees is that it is indeed night, but that a bright light caused by the Druid magic is shining on everything, radiating out from the shrine. There is more light than I wanted, honestly, but the whole thing is only lit by a single small flashlight with a tube on the end to focus the light more already! And a light brick, I guess. But I get the criticism, I just didn’t have a way to fix it. The build is still together, though, so if you have any ideas of improving the lighting, let me know and I might try a re-shoot. 

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7 hours ago, Henjin_Quilones said:

As for the rest, I agree that the lighting is a bit confusing. My intention with the black sky and dark trees is that it is indeed night, but that a bright light caused by the Druid magic is shining on everything, radiating out from the shrine. There is more light than I wanted, honestly, but the whole thing is only lit by a single small flashlight with a tube on the end to focus the light more already! And a light brick, I guess. But I get the criticism, I just didn’t have a way to fix it. The build is still together, though, so if you have any ideas of improving the lighting, let me know and I might try a re-shoot. 

Well, I definitely think of myself as an amateur when it comes to lighting and you as far above me, but for what it's worth, daylight might be good to soften the magical light, and I would also try a smaller field of focus, ideally just the shrine and the druid, not the peripheral trees and rock (that could be a postprocess blur though).  For color instead of the black, I would think about the yellow light being maybe the reflection of the setting sun?  So maybe a pale reddish blue?

The only thing about daylight is it might soften the other lights too much.  You know better than I do how feasible my idea is.  The other thing is, try a "normal" lit shot, and then one like this, with the bright magic glare, both from the exact same angle, and then layer them in Photoshop or GIMP and erase the spots where you want the other one to show through.  What is really bothering me is the glare on the far rocks in the back--it's messing with what otherwise could be some good forced perspective.

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On 5/8/2021 at 10:11 PM, Henjin_Quilones said:

This build spiraled out of control, measuring at final count something like 110x80 studs. And I have now sworn off immersive landscape builds...

:roflmao:  Yup.  Immersive builds in general do that to you, and to your bank account!  Despite your pain here, this came out absolutely fantastically.  (Which is probably why a lot of us really like these "100% Lego" presentations!)  The scale of this build and the lighting really create an epic movie-like vibe.  

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I like the whole build but your vegetation totally love it. Thanks for sharing.

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On 5/11/2021 at 9:34 PM, Kai NRG said:

Well, I definitely think of myself as an amateur when it comes to lighting and you as far above me, but for what it's worth, daylight might be good to soften the magical light, and I would also try a smaller field of focus, ideally just the shrine and the druid, not the peripheral trees and rock (that could be a postprocess blur though).  For color instead of the black, I would think about the yellow light being maybe the reflection of the setting sun?  So maybe a pale reddish blue?

The only thing about daylight is it might soften the other lights too much.  You know better than I do how feasible my idea is.  The other thing is, try a "normal" lit shot, and then one like this, with the bright magic glare, both from the exact same angle, and then layer them in Photoshop or GIMP and erase the spots where you want the other one to show through.  What is really bothering me is the glare on the far rocks in the back--it's messing with what otherwise could be some good forced perspective.

That would be the effect of the daylight, yes. Any sort of diffuse light would make the central shrine lighting indistinguishable from the rest. I did take one picture with light from another source, too, angled like the setting sun, but the whole build just becomes bright and cheery then, not the dark and magical vibe I was hoping to achieve. As for layering with post processing, that’s beyond my skills, I am afraid. I have never used Photoshop and have never learned to use Gimp well. I mostly just stick to Paint.net, which is very basic. The rocks are not meant to be far away, though, but instead to be very close to the shrine, and so would be reflecting the glare of the magical light. Does that help see it differently? 

On 5/18/2021 at 4:14 PM, mrcp6d said:

:roflmao:  Yup.  Immersive builds in general do that to you, and to your bank account!  Despite your pain here, this came out absolutely fantastically.  (Which is probably why a lot of us really like these "100% Lego" presentations!)  The scale of this build and the lighting really create an epic movie-like vibe.  

Haha, yes they do, though I did not buy anything specially for this build, so it was not costly in that sense (building the collection to this point, on the other hand...). Glad you like it; cinematic shots are what I strive for! 

20 hours ago, Niku said:

I like the whole build but your vegetation totally love it. Thanks for sharing.

Glad you like the vegetation. The trees were much more fun to make than the rocks!

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1 hour ago, Henjin_Quilones said:

Does that help see it differently? 

Yeah, a little, though it kind of makes the shine look smaller.  If you do happen to want to try layering it, I'd be happy to do the gimp for you; it just needs to be two pictures with different lighting from the exact same angle (same crop, everything).

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Nicely done with a very immersive scene as mentioned previously. Great use of colour on the trees which contrasts well with the rockwork. Overall a great entry, nice work man. 

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I've said it before, and I'll say it again.
I only wish I was a minifigure to live there and bathe on that waterfall. Talk about immersive photography! This is stunning. Incredibly beautiful. And the access by boat only makes it more magical. Phenomenal build, worthy of the builder. 

I can only imagine now, what secret powers are being hidden in this shrine. What source of magic would the shrine protect? The Treasure of the Druids... sounds amazing! We can only hope there's a group dedicated to finding the Treasure of the Druids, and hope if falls in the hands of the good-willing ones. Would they bring Druids back? Revive and regroup a long-lost race in our blood-tainted history?

Amazing work, sire Henjin.
Skol.

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This is super cinematic. Great work, HJ.

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Late to the party, but this definitely deserves a bump! :grin:  There are some beautiful colors gorgeously tied together here, Henjin - the flowering trees and shaded rocks framing the lighter rocks and the epic blue water and waterfall really make this come together soo well.  The man-made elements - boat, wizard, bridge (shrine? :laugh:) - along with the mysterious yellow-ish tint in the waterfall takes this from the natural to the magical, and the huge rock formations behind are just superb.  If I had any nitpicks it'd be that my eye kind of wants some tiles (or round tiles?) in the waterfall - I think there may be some cheese in there(?), but a little more variety would probably help with that unpredictable, chaotic falling water that waterfalls are about.  Otherwise I just love this though! - it's been on my bucket-list for a long time to try my hand at some of these giant rock formations, and you've shown here again just why they look so great!  Fantastic work.

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the scenery, the lighting, the framing, truly impressive

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