Thursday, May 13, 2021

Ahkal Teke Set 4 Progress


 Finally finishing AT4's cape and both neckpieces, I held a shoot with no less than 7 horses.  This is clear evidence of pent-up-ness!  AT4 has not been the fastest piece I've ever built.   There were too many obstacles ranged against it for a swift completion, and they ran the gamut from a bad arm to bad weather,... from volcano-watching addiction to plain old quarantine blues, and many others.  But yesterday things turned around.  I had to try out this fascinatingly-colored set on quite the range:  Two Perlinos, a palomino, a pearl gray, a golden bay, a liver chestnut and a pearl-black!   Be warned:  this is a long, photo-heavy post.

In every shoot there is at least one surprise picture.  In this one there were several.  Here is my favorite, the pearl gray:  Celestine, known as Palustris in my herd (after pinus palustris, the longleaf pine of the south).  Who'd've guessed she'd turn out looking so good!

She shows the colors of the gemstones the best.  This whole post is about trying to depict the jewel colors. You've heard it from me before:  It's really hard to shoot these sets!!
Here's Palustris from another angle, which shows the forehead.  I'm sorry the cape doesn't fit right; this is another tale of woe you'll hear about later. 
This set, Akhal Teke presentation set No. 4, is being made to fit an Altynai, who will be in the color of Breyer's Perlino.  That makes Shazada the model of choice for shooting it, as we saw last time:  Starting Akhal Teke set no 4.   Here he is showing off his beautiful color with the light blue aquamarines.

Each of these shots is processed separately, and thus they don't always match each other.  (Honestly, my house is not really that color.)  Here's Shazada, in whole body for reference:

And a close up of his portrait.  The colors of the stones range from light to darker and from greenish to blue. 

Very close up on this horse.  The 2-ply neckband (the top one) is made with aquamarines, the very smallest ones I had.  The 3-ply is made with sapphires, as I didn't have any aquamarines the right size.  (Larger ones will go for the breastcollar.)  Note how some sapphires are less blue than the aquamarines.

Here's a Bird's-Eye shot.  The cape jewel was lighter than most, and thus very hard to photograph.

Here we see it all on Marimba, my own resincast Perlino.  She was my NaMo horse for 2020.  The slightly smaller size was a challenge.

A close up of Marimba.  Despite the poor fitting, I like the colors on her.  Her slight reddish cast seems to bring out the blue.

Moving on to the centerpiece horse, Altynai / Talisman simply steals the show.  I put him in just the neckpieces at first.

The above was another of those surprise shots that came out far more striking than I had anticipated.  It needed no PhotoShopping in its colors.  However I was unable to resist cleaning up the horse!  I smoothed the ridged moldline on his face.

More Talisman posing in all his wild-eyed glory.  With a bit of darkening overall (the overcast was a help here), the jewel colors came out well.

Here's a shot taken only on this horse.  I wanted to depict the color of the central throat jewels, which don't show up in any other pose, (except laid out, below).

 Here is Altynai/Talisman in the full bridle, cape and neckpieces.  It's a shot made possible by the zoom feature of the camera.  Still washed out on the face but the neck is realistic.

He is larger than Lonesome Glory, but there is overlap, fortunately.
Another view from the offside.

If it weren't for Brasenose, I'd quit here, with this super portrait.  What a photogenic horse!  As it is we're using it for the frontispiece:

I could always fall back on the tried and true Laid Out on the Rail approach:

THAT shows everything!

But it's fun struggling with the horses.  Who's next?  How about a wild card!  Of course the neckpieces don't fit at all on a Saddlebred.  The cape or crown piece, made to be strung on the poll strap, really doesn't fit this larger throatlatch (viz., Palustris).  The cape is trying to fit over the poll buckle and can't do so; I may try to correct this.  But the view of the jewel colors is a pleasant discovery, especially when you remember how many Akhal Tekes will be in golden yellow.

The brother of Laird is, in my herd, Rafael.  Here unfortunately is a disappointing pairing.  No matter how I darkened, his black coat washed out the camera every time.  Still there is potential; in person he is lovely.

To end this undoubtedly indulgent shooting session, I present my original and still beloved Russian resincast Teke, Brasenose my NaMoPaiMo horse from 2018. 

How do these aquamarines look against a bronze liver chestnut?  Pretty good, I think.
Nearside view.  Yet another pleasant surprise.  The cape needs to be trained; until then, sticky wax is indicated.
I will finish with a Bird'sEye view on this horse.  In an attempt to show the cape jewel, I've left this shot unlightened, so he appears somewhat darker than before.  Dig those jewel colors on the neck!
We still have the breastcollar to go, but the end is in sight.

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