Behind The Scene

You might wonder what tools I use to creat all these pages. I'm not shy to tell that most of them are old tools, but since they still can do all I want, I see no need to seek new, up-to-date tools. What I use are as follows:

1. Photographic Devices
1.1 Canon T-70 w/ 35-70 f3.5-4.5 zoom lenses. This SLR camera is about 15 years old, dating back to the '80s
1.2 2x and 4x close-up lenses
1.3 A mirror with tiltable base, to be used as reflex
1.4 Films = Fuji ASA 200 films for color prints
1.5 Prints = printed on 4"x6" Kodak Royal Paper
(If use different films or papers, may get different results)

2. Scanning Devices
2.1 HP Scanjet 5370C, scanning at 130 dpi resolution, saving each file at 90% image quality. This is a quality or professional scanner. If you use cheap scanner, you will never get the brightness, sharpness and clarity as seen on my site. (This scanner can scan films- negatives and slides, but I don't know how and I don't bother to know. I've been used to scanning prints for a long time. The advantage is that in one scanning pass, I get two picture files.) The reason I scan at 130 dpi is to get full-screen images of around 770x520 pixels each. I recommend viewing at 800x600 mode.

3. Softwares
3.1 Windows 98 - the Operating System. Without an O.S., nothing works
3.2 Notepad - my one and only web-authoring tool - used to create all the *.htm files (in case any file is larger than 32KB, Wordpad will be used instead)
3.3 Photostyler SE (2.0) - used to manipulate image files and to create thumbnail pictures. This software I've been using since Windows 3.1's era, and it still works fine with Windows 98!
3.4 Anfyteam's Java Applets - used as touch-ups and to create special effect images. You can use too by downloading from
3.5 Xara3D - used to create headers, page names, etc.
3.6 Netscape 4.7 - used to test the pages and surf the Web
(Well I have and have tried Netscape 6.0, but I prefer 4.7)
3.7 CuteFTP 1.8 - used to upload files to host's server. This version works fine, I don't need newer version

Well I think that's all I need and use in creating this wonderful Web site. Now let me share some ideas and viewpoints. I came to know Top Military Sites late last month, but I've been to most military model web sites listed there. By comparision, my pictures stand out in term of size (full screen at 800x600 setting), brightness, sharpness and clarity, yet they average only 70-80 KB per pic. After seeing my model pics, who would like like to see 1/4, 1/2, 3/4 screen, blurry, darky pics taken by digital cameras?. So if you want to show the real beauty of your models and dioramas, you should:

1. Use SLR camera - or you can never match my image quality.
2. Take pictures in direct sunlight.
3. Setting up the scene, i.e, getting rid of anything in the foreground or background that reminds you of the real world. I use simple platform - a 60x120cm grass sheet (Made in Germany), 40x60cm sand sheet and stone sheet (used to simulate ground and background) Make believe you are taking pictures of the real thing in ITS natural environment, not YOUR environment.

If you can do as suggested, your site and models will be more interesting and appealing. The choice is yours.

Happy modelling!

Phaisal Hanbuntrong

Back to Page 14 B