Yatkuu

[ENTRY][SMALL] From Merchant to Pirate

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593 posts

What happened to Steve between his last appearance as a merchant at the Imperial Trading Post and his transformation into a pirate aboard Captain Redbeard's Skull's Eye Schooner? 
Well, if you were to ask him, his stories would vary, often depending on his rum intake that day.

Once, he claimed to have traveled to China, where he made a fortune in the silk trade, only to lose it all in a game of dice. Another time, he boasted of rescuing an Indian princess from an arranged marriage, only to find her "quite a handful", as he put it.

The truth, however, is much more mundane. 
Steve was caught with goods on which he had "forgotten" to pay taxes and was sentenced to a year in jail. 
But Steve never wallowed in self-pity. He took this setback in stride, using his time in jail to plan his future and contemplate revenge against the Imperials...

53795436454_585dd093f0_c.jpgFrom merchant to pirate by Gregory Coquelz, on Flickr

The MOC is just under 200 elements, here's a behind the scene look at the build.

 

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11 posts

Very fun, I like the build and the picture is great. Really captures being in a dark cell with only a glimmer or light coming in.

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2618 posts

A beautiful moc! The lightning and focus make for a very atmospheric scene. Fun little detail with the seagull in front of the window. It kind of represents the freedom Steve is dreaming of!

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41 posts

Ahoy Matey!

They call me Captain Crit in these parts and I heard that polly wants a sandwich (They’re fed up with crackers apparently) - a criticism sandwich that is! (For you landlubbers, that’s 3 seas [Cs]- Compliment, Constructive Criticism, and another Compliment).

The backstory on this one was great! I especially liked the part about Steve’s stories varying based on rum intake- it made me smile like I’d had a good barrel o’ grog meself. The idea is very well thought out and executed.

It was hard to come up with criticism for this build, ye did an excellent job. The only thing that mayhaps could be improved a wee bit is the texture on the wall. Maybe ye could add a few more types of pieces, like plates, round 1x1 and 2x2 plates, and the occasional completely normal 1x2 brick, or maybe some brackets or bricks with side studs to connect tiles or ingots.

Me favorite part o’ this build is the atmosphere created by the lighting, but I’m also likin’ the part usage for the bars and and chair. Ye did a great job, especially using a limited number of pieces. 

Fair Winds Matey!

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75 posts

Very cool! I like how Steve has an anchor tattoo, it’s reminiscent of the Cutter’s main sail. Good job with the photography, may I ask if you achieved this effect with a phone camera or a dedicated camera?

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593 posts

13 hours ago, Math Wizard said:

It was hard to come up with criticism for this build, ye did an excellent job. The only thing that mayhaps could be improved a wee bit is the texture on the wall. Maybe ye could add a few more types of pieces, like plates, round 1x1 and 2x2 plates, and the occasional completely normal 1x2 brick, or maybe some brackets or bricks with side studs to connect tiles or ingots.

Yes, for sure, the walls could have used a bit more texture, and in any other type of creation I would have gone the extra mile but here I kept it relatively simple for two reasons:

parts count, highly textured walls are extremely parts intensive and I wanted to keep this one under the 200 elements limit. Granted, there are not 200 elements visible in the final shot and the non-visible parts could have been optimized to offset the overal parts count - but I didn't want to overhthink it all because I wanted to keep it simple. The main focus is meant to be on Steve/the prisoner and I didn't want the rest of the piece to be too distracting.

10 hours ago, SevenDeadlyStreamers said:

may I ask if you achieved this effect with a phone camera or a dedicated camera?

I used my reflex for this one, you can find all the camera setting details on Flickr.

I shot this in the afternoon with sun shining in from the right and leaving a small gap open in the cell ceiling to give the "ray of light" effect. The camera was laid flat on the table and I covered it and the front part of the build with a blanket to shield it from the outside light and used my phone as small light source under the blanket to make the guard visible. I was hoping the yellowish light of the phone would give it a latern-like glow - I'm not sure I achieved that, but this was the 40th attempt and I decided it was good enough! :pir_laugh2:

Overall I am quite happy (and surprised TBH) with the decent result - my only gripe is the fact that the cell window / seagull is a bit too exposed but I think that fixing this would have required some extra trickery - maybe shooting 2 pictures with different settings and merging them afterward.

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1703 posts

Funny story and good MOC! It can happen that Steve forgets to pay his taxes, but fortunately only a few people know his true story.

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75 posts

8 hours ago, Yatkuu said:

Yes, for sure, the walls could have used a bit more texture, and in any other type of creation I would have gone the extra mile but here I kept it relatively simple for two reasons:

parts count, highly textured walls are extremely parts intensive and I wanted to keep this one under the 200 elements limit. Granted, there are not 200 elements visible in the final shot and the non-visible parts could have been optimized to offset the overal parts count - but I didn't want to overhthink it all because I wanted to keep it simple. The main focus is meant to be on Steve/the prisoner and I didn't want the rest of the piece to be too distracting.

I used my reflex for this one, you can find all the camera setting details on Flickr.

I shot this in the afternoon with sun shining in from the right and leaving a small gap open in the cell ceiling to give the "ray of light" effect. The camera was laid flat on the table and I covered it and the front part of the build with a blanket to shield it from the outside light and used my phone as small light source under the blanket to make the guard visible. I was hoping the yellowish light of the phone would give it a latern-like glow - I'm not sure I achieved that, but this was the 40th attempt and I decided it was good enough! :pir_laugh2:

Overall I am quite happy (and surprised TBH) with the decent result - my only gripe is the fact that the cell window / seagull is a bit too exposed but I think that fixing this would have required some extra trickery - maybe shooting 2 pictures with different settings and merging them afterward.

Well done keeping it under 200pcs and I can tell you took some time to develop a good shot. Now that you mention the “lantern” light I do notice it a bit. Excellent job!

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5385 posts

Such lovely lighting!  I've been experimenting with in-camera lighting myself recently and it's so satisfactory when it pays off like this! :pir-sweet:  Great use of your limited parts for the occasion too, that grate for the prison bars and the cloth set beneath him are masterful, and the seagull out the window is hilarious as well :pir-laugh:  As far as critique goes, I haven't much to say except that I would love to see a monkey, but with the amount of animalia already present it might be a bit overkill! :pir-grin:  Superb stuff, mate!

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1774 posts

Steve looks way too happy to be in jail. Is that guard drinking on the job? :imperialguard_commander1:.

This one pictures invites the viewer to want to see more but I suppose it is only this perspective?

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593 posts

Posted (edited)
5 hours ago, Sebeus I said:

Steve looks way too happy to be in jail. Is that guard drinking on the job? :imperialguard_commander1:.

This one pictures invites the viewer to want to see more but I suppose it is only this perspective?

Steve is a great philosopher – what would be the point of surrendering to despair?

NO, Steve is more the kind of guy to take things in stride, bide his time and daydream about open sea, spicy rum, juicy contraband... and of course, vengeance on the Imperials!

And yeah, that guard is definitely drunk… actually taking a nap right now... tsk tsk, you just can’t find good personnel these days.

 

Obviously, with 200 elements I could not really build a castle (here's a behind the scene look at the build)... but I would like to think that this prison cell is actually located in the basement of my "Hermit Fortress". :pir-classic:

 

Edited by Yatkuu

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359 posts

Brilliant photography skills, and proof that a picture is worth a thousand words, great job! Great contrast is present between the small bit of the outside with a happy seagull and the interior of the fort, where the soldiers are as depressed as anyone, drinking away their days.

I agree that the lack of texture is affecting this build. I will also add that we can hardly see the mouse/rat in the cell, maybe put it closer to him?

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920 posts

Really spectacular all around. I don't really have any suggestions to make... It's just all so well done. You said you took 40 pics untill you got the one you were happy with? Also, some of the techniques you mentioned, I assume you have study photography?

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917 posts

These are alll false accusations, fabricated lies, lies lies! Steve wouldn't do all that, and he wouldn't let himself be put in such situation. 

What you see here is clearly not an imprisoment situation, but just the way Steve likes to relax, find peace from all that world and it's problems, people obsessed with money (where Steve obviously don't belong!). You realy believe they would provide a free pet rat for him as a companion if he was a criminal? No, obviously not. An a prison wouldn't have such a nice decor in it's window, allowing so much sun, no, if You would spend any time behind bars, you would now it would be ugly, darkish and wet place. 

But anyway, brilliant composition and great photography! 

The way You play with colors, wow. And a seagull behind that window is a great touch and a smart way to incorparate maritime element into the picture!

Even Steve's torso is somewhat different here, and on point. He screams to me that he's not an ordinary seaman, but a real hero, who is just about to be kidnapped by his fate into some new exciting adventure.   

Is there anything that could be added in here? Can't look for a reason to change single brick. It's actually so chilling, even tho it's a damn prison. 

Well maybe there could be a dog with keys in his mouth to bring more pirate friendly easter eggs into the shot? Or maybe he could even take the place of that seagull, to bring more fun and action into that scene.

But honestly, i wouldn't change a thing ;)  

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