I invite you to check it out - http://ssccdispatches.yuku.com/directory
THE BLOG HAS MOVED to our NEW SSCC Message Board. These files will remain here as an archive in case people desire to go through them, but there will be no new updates here. Hope to see you over at SSCC DISPATCHES
I invite you to check it out - http://ssccdispatches.yuku.com/directory
Well, another busy weekend. The first section of the new Episode of VIETNAM STORY has been sent to GL and also placed on Point Man's Privy. This first section of the story contains the first "real ads" to be
placed in one of my online comic books.
You will probably have noticed, if you paused on the Home Page that there is a matching ad for Toy Chest and Collectibles there, with a link to their website. This is the first of what will be many ads, part of a growing relationship between the SSCC Ohio and TC&C.
It is our hope that these ads will in some small way help to grow Cory's business and that we will have his support of our events for the foreseeable future. Cory is a first class individual in every respect and we are really happy to have him onboard for the 2011 November Ft. Thomas show. We have no idea whether the advertising will have any effect at all - this is an experiment to be sure, but if it does well for Cory, I believe that we will expand the practice to include our other event vendors if they so desire.
As a grocery advertising guy (for the past 30 years), it is really exciting for me to be working on something different and new and this is a great opportunity to do something with art that doesn't take the shape of soup cans, heads of lettuce or cereal boxes.
The newest episode of VIETNAM STORY is called THE BUILDUP. It is divided into six sections and will unfold both on GL's Ultimate Soldier Unofficial Fan Page as well as my own site, Point Man's Privy. The first section of the story is already posted at my site and GL has the files as well, hopefully to post this week. The story is milestone for me because it is my first use of my FIREBASE COOPER diorama, which I previewed at the 2010 Ft. Thomas show. I am hoping that we can even use that as an advertising point for this year's show, you know something like, "Come see Firebase Cooper and the actors of Vietnam Story". I have thought that it might be cool to advertise a seminar for this year's show on Storytelling and Creating Comics. Comic Life, which is one of the programs I use has just upgraded to a new version for MAC and the word is that it will be available for PC for the first time this year. Without a doubt, it is the best in it's class of program and that is going to be welcome news for folks that are struggling with their online graphic novels. I am pretty excite about the news for a number of people.
This is a sample of another ad page that is in the first section of the new episode. I had hoped that I would be able to run my comics with the ad pages at the OSW site as well. This is up in the air at the moment. The OSW group have some rules about advertising and this is a borderline issue. I have made the request and their staff is reviewing it. I would hope that they would see it as being part of my online magazine and let it fly, if not, I will have to drop them as place to post. I hate to do that because I think I would have a much larger audience by adding that site, but I will not violate their rules obviously and I will not run the comic without the ads. Well, we'll see how that plays out shortly.
I am still messing with the SSCC OHIO FORUM idea. There is a problem. You cannot upload pictures to the forum with the free version of the software. The best you can do is link to pictures that you have already online elsewhere. I just don't think any of us are going to be happy with that setup. The upgrade version unfortunately is $6.95 a month and I am just not going to put out $84 a year of my money to pay for the software. It is time to explore some other options. I am sure that there must be some out there, I just don't know what they are. I will keep you all informed of any developments.
I don't know how many people saw these last week. Okimbored had some in progress shots of his sd.kfz 222 and early war SS Troops on the Six Division and GL's and they looked great. I have swiped some of them to drop into the blog as I figured he wouldn't mind. These shots are from GL's as I couldn't get onto the Six Division. Don't know what their problem is today.
Wish that I had thought to get the additional pictures of the armored car on Friday because there were a couple of new angles I hadn't seen previously and they really did a nice joy of showing you the overall vehicle. No doubt about it, it looks great and I sure wish I had one in my German motorpool. Of course I also wish that Okimbored had built it for me so that I didn't have to go through the pain. It really looks sharp man, I sure hope you will be able to attend this spring's Battle of France shoot.
His troops look outstanding as well, the vehicle crew is really sharp and his infantry troops look exactly like some pictures I have in a Verlinden book. Really, really nice. Where did you get that camera in the camera case? That is like one of the coolest details I have ever seen.
Well, that is it for the UPDATE tonight. It has been a while since I have been regular at this. I will try to do a little better at that going forward. Until next time, have a good one!
...Truth is I got to interested in watching JOHN ADAMS and the next thing I knew it was 10:30 pm. So this morning, it will be a question. All of us that bought the Panzer II from Dragon have been speculating what Dragon will do next. I think it will be fun to have everyone put the speculations in writing here and perhaps their wish list as well and we can see a year from now who was right.
Here are my speculations - I believe Dragon will do another version of the the Panzer II, either an upgraded version of the tank or the same variant painted in a different scheme (and I think the second possibility more likely). I believe that if Dragon does another tank it will either be a Marder II, allowing them to use the same lower hull, wheels and track, or we will see a T-38. I don't believe either of these will come out as a model kit.
What I would like to see Dragon do - I would like to see an Sd.kfz 222 armored car or a Protze. I don't think either of these are actually an unreasonable speculation either as Dragon loves to copy things that people have already done. I don't know why they do that, but they have done it over and over again.
Well, those are my thoughts, what do you think?
Wasn't able to get online last night to do update. Planning to do one tonight thought, thanks for your patience.
One Busy Weekend...
We've got several things to cover this week, so let's get started...
Well...it has been a busy weekend...for the site anyway. I have spent a good portion of both yesterday and today working on it. The first thing I have done is move all of the printables to a new website so that they are all together.
Now, when you open the Home page, you will see this banner. When you click on it, you will be taken to a new website, which amazingly enough, looks just like this one. It just seemed like an easier way to keep the printables organized and together. At the bottom of the page is a link back to the SSCC, the average Joe won't even know they left our site. As we add new printables, they will be added to the new site.
Next, a new photo essay feature has been added to the home page - BATTLE OF FRANCE. This is a teaser for the spring shoot.
The teaser includes pictures that Hammer Six, Panzer Commander and I shot a couple of weeks back as well as pictures of the new Panzer II tanks that were taken at the meeting. They have all been clipped and new backgrounds added to make them a little more interesting in typical Point Man fashion, so I hope you will enjoy them.
What do I mean by "Clipping". Clipping is a process that involves tracing around the edges of the image that you want to keep with a pen tool to create what is called a "Clipping Path". There are some excellent technical reasons for doing this, rather than erasing the background, one of which is file size. Anyway, once a picture has been clipped, the image looks something like this;
What you are looking at here is just the clipped portion of the photograph. Actually, I save the image in such a way that the original background information is still there in case I should need it for some reason. In Photoshop I can utilize the picture either way. Clipping a picture like this usually takes 45 minutes to about an hour to do, but it is much easier than trying to erase the image of the background.
This is one of the backgrounds that I used for the shoot. It is actually two different photographs with a portion of one duplicated to create a transition point. Some of the backgrounds in the shoots have as many as 10 layers in them. The trick is to make them look like they don't. This is kind of a simplified explanation of the process, but hopefully it makes it a little clearer about why putting out these sort of images takes so much time.
Next on the billet for tonight is a look at Okimbored's sd.kfz 222 armored car project. He probably can shed a lot more light on what we are looking at here, but I just want to say that this vehicle is looking nothing short of amazing. I really can't wait to see the final product, but even at this stage of assembly, it looks great. In the pictures you will get to see the interior details that he is working on, including the main gun (flak) and all the other interior components. Plus you get a little peak at the outside of the hull.
As is the nature of any armored vehicle, the amount of interior detail that can actually be seen is usually pretty slim, but as you can see, Okimbored has done a beautiful job of making sure that there is detail to be seen none- the-less. It looks really slick buddy. I am telling you what, if Dragon is going to make another armored vehicle next year...this is the one that I would vote for. This baby is a beauty.
Finally, I mentioned to several folks that I was trying to upgrade some 21st Century Afrika Korps figures that I had. I have five of them. I have basically kept the uniforms and scrapped everything else. So far I have 3 of the 5 figures "done", so I took a few quick pictures. I am sure that there is a lot more that could be done to them, but already they look better than they did. Would like to hear what you think.
Actually, now that I see the pictures, they really aren't very good. I think I made them too small and killed what little detail I had. The pants, tunic, hats and boots are all 21st Century. The rest of the gear is pretty much all Dragon except for the gas mask canisters, which are also 21st Century. The figures are all Dragon. Not that you can really tell too much about it from these pictures, but the Eagle, collar tabs and cuff titles are all done in Indesign and printed on fabric paper. The straps on the canisters were replace with strapping material from GOOD STUFF TO GO.
Well, that is about all for this time around. A lot of changes here, hopefully I gave you all plenty of stuff to chew on for the new week. Check out the new page for the Printables, the new feature "Battle of France on the home page and take the time to let Okimbored how cool you think is 222 looks. There will be more changes coming to the website as I have time to get in and get them done, so until next time,
...have a good one!
A couple of questions...
Good Morning Campers,
Wasn't able to get on last night and blog, so I am doing it this morning. Unfortunately, doing it from work, I can't upload pictures to the website because of the firewall here. So... in place of a picture, you will just have to get a thousand words (well, maybe not that many).
For me it was a pretty good weekend as I started on a new project, working on some DAK troops. I don't have but five, so it should be a pretty quick project. Essentially, I just want to take some old 21st DAK uniforms, make some improvements to them, add better equipment and put them on better figures. They won't be state of the art when they are finished, but they will be better than they were. Projects like this always get me thinking about other projects and goals that I have for the year, so I have a couple of questions for you;
In 2011, what 1/6th projects do you have planned? If you don't have any now, try to come up with a figure project, a vehicle project and a "prop" project.
Second question, In 2011, what are the 1/6th purchases that you are planning to make and do they create any additional projects?
For me, working up these DAK figures is my figure project. I haven't really thought beyond that with figure projects. I have two vehicle projects; Hammer Six's Panther and my 250 kit (probably an early war 250). As far as props go, I would really like to build a kitchen wagon at some point.
Well, as they say, inquiring minds want to know, so let me know what you are working on, or planning to work on in 2011. I won't hold you to them, I just want to see what everyone is thinking about.
Well, I think by now that most people who ordered a Panzer II probably have them. Pictures are starting to turn up on various sites and those who didn't order one, are probably kicking themselves. Dragon certainly outdid themselves on this baby. I haven't done much more than put mine together and put it in the middle of the floor, but I am sure glad that I got it.
The detailing and finishing on the Panzer II are extremely well done. The only thing I wish is that all the hatches had been functional. I see that there is a real opportunity for the first person that creates an engine for this thing. It really doesn't look like it would be too hard to make the engine hatches functional (though I believe that I will let someone else show us how it is done first).
Here you are seeing my Panzer II with my Early War Germans. I am afraid that I don't have all that many. I have two Pak 37s with crews and non com. I have a 5 man infantry unit and an officer and I have my tank commander. Hardly a huge force, but I am pretty pleased with them. When added to what Panzercommander and Hammer Six have put together, we have a fairly sizable force. Hopefully everyone will get to see all three tanks at the meeting Wednesday night.
I have been working on pictures taken when PC and HS were here last weekend. It is sort of slow going because the backgrounds have to be completely removed. Once that is done. I am going to shoot an additional couple of scenes, add some new backgrounds and have a nice little teaser for a larger photo shoot that we want to do in the spring - working title, Battle of France.
The photo on top has had the background removed by adding what is called a "Clipping Path". The background is actually still there, but I can now choose not to show it, adding another background instead. The original background was this dark mottled green color that you see in the lower photo. This, by the way, is one of my favorite figures that PC put together for the shoot. What a great sculpt!
I am also working on my next VIETNAM STORY Episode. All of the pictures are completed and I am currently laying the story out in comic book form. I have two segments completed so far. I think it is going to be a good one because you will get to see the base for the first time. The Rat Patrol will show up for the first time and there will be a lot of new characters added into the storyline. I stopped to put together a handy reference sheet for myself and there are now 30 characters that are part of the story.
I needed a sheet like this just so I could keep all the names straight without having to constantly look them up in my background files. I am pretty pleased with the images that I have put together for this story and I think folks will like it. I am pretty anxious to shoot the next one, once I have this one done.
But, I don't want to give too much away, so that is all I will say about it for now. I will let everyone know when it is online though.
Looking forward to seeing everyone Wednesday night at the meeting. Hope the weather will be okay and that everyone can make it (including me). Until then, have a good one!
Weekend Photo Shoot
Well...here it is, the first post of the new year. I meant to post last night, but didn't have the energy to get it done. Hammer Six and Panzercommander came up to Columbus yesterday and we all spent the day shooting the breeze, eating and taking a few pictures. Great day, lot of fun! Anyway, I was too pooped to post last night, so I am doing it this morning. My group had the day off today, but I worked a few hours this morning to get caught up and now I am going to play the rest of the day. Haven't really had time to work on the pictures that we took yesterday, but here are a few raw images so that you can see what we were up to. Hammer Six has this great looking vignette piece that we wanted to use for a prop - a European style telephone pole. First of all we decided to do a scene with a command group, stopped in front of the pole, checking their map and considering their next move. The Kuble, Motorcycle and sidecar and troops are all Panzercommander's. I particularly liked that sculpt on the Motorcyclist as you can tell from the one closeup. Lot of personality in that sculpt.
That Panzer officer on the righthand side of the shot is part of Panzercommander's Panzer II crew. He is all ready for his Dragon tank to arrive and he has got a great looking crew outfitted for it. Look forward to more pictures soon.
Next were a couple of figures brought to feature his great looking telephone pole vignette. That wire reel setup from Dragon is a beautiful piece and it looks really sharp in a setting like this.
Hammer Six bought the vignette from Bobbie at the Ft. Thomas show, one of many great items that Bobbie had for sale. I think I took about 50 pictures total of the two setups and I am looking forward to taking a portion of them and working some Photoshop magic on them this next week as I have time. Panzercommander's scene will be used as part of a teaser for a 1940 Invasion of France dio that we are planning. Can't wait until spring. We were hoping for at least one Panzer II to be here by the weekend so that it could be included, but it didn't happen. Oh well, hopefully we will have a trio of them to share with everyone at the meeting on the 12th of January.
Starting this week, I am planning to do just one blog update each week. Normally, I will plan to do that Sunday night, though if there are conflicts it could happen on Monday evening. I am just finding it too hard to come up with material for three days a week (much less five). It was CK2's suggestion to go to once a week and I think it is a great one. It will allow me to work on some other things besides just the website. I will try to make the once a week update cover 2 or 3 subjects so that there is plenty to talk about the rest of week in comments. I would really like to see more of you participate in the blog. It's real easy to do. All you have to do is use your screen name, make a comment and hit submit. Would love to see more of you participate. So...until next time, have a good one!
Weekend Project Update...
Well, this is going to be a quick one tonight. I spent most of the weekend working on stuff, so I am not really prepared for an Update tonight. That being the case, I will give you an update of what I accomplished this weekend.
First I worked on my "early war" German troops. This involved changing out straps and slings for the most part. I had a bunch of gas mask canisters that I replaced the straps on. They look so much better with the elastic straps gone. I also changed out all the straps on my helmets. Replaced the slings on about half my rifles and a number of other little detail items. My troops look so much better now.
Second, I finished the shoot on the next episode of Vietnam Story. I had shot and photoshopped about half the story, now the other half is in the can. Not sure what I've got yet, haven't downloaded the pictures. But I think it is good stuff, based on what I saw as I was shooting. I would really like to have all these pictures prepped and be able to actually start on the comic right after Christmas. Love to have it out there first part of January. Well, we'll see how this week goes.
Well, that was about all for me this weekend. It was a busy one and I used my time pretty well for a change. Like to hear what everyone else worked on this weekend too. That's it for tonight. Have a good one!
Battle of the Bulge...
Tonight we've got something special. Panzercommander did a tribute to the Battle of the Bulge with a great looking vignette of a German soldier from the 352nd Volksgrenadier Division. It really looks sharp, so enjoy!