“A scent of wonder, a pinch of adventure and a glimpse of treasure – “Tripper” the new fragrance from FILLE DE CENDRILLON.”
About the figure:
If you take a look at my current collection, you might notice the lack of Idolmaster figures besides Shiki. This is mainly because I’m not really into idol shows and although the figures (especially the Cinderella Girls line from Alter) are pretty and well crafted, most of the time, there are other releases that rob money out of my wallet even faster. So when I pre-orderd this one, it must have been a “slow news day” and so I ended up with my very first Idolmaster figure.
The first thing that comes to my mind when I think about Alters Cinderella Girls line is that they cost a little more than your average scale figure but when Shiki finally arrived, I quickly understood that she was worth every cent. Her size alone justifies the price tag and in addition to a beautiful 1/7 scaled model, you also get some nice props, like the chair, a very detailed grimoire and a pink chest that you can even open. And the best thing: All those accessories are loose and can be detached from the figure without having to worry about pegs or holes. So you might be able to use some of them on other figures when doing photos.
The base has also a very lovely decorated print on it and is definitely a step up from your normal clear plate. And even if you’re not happy with the design of the base, the figure can easily be placed somewhere else, since neither the chair nor the chest has a baseplate mount.
About the series:
As you might can tell from my previous paragraph about the figure, I’m not very deep into the whole idol group genre. In fact I’ve never watched a single episode of THE IDOLM@STER or Love Live and at this point I doubt that I would ever take the time to watch one of those shows from start to finish. Also since my phone is kinda small and slow I’m also not into playing those rhythm games. Yet I do like the costumes and some of the character designs. They make a great inspiring source for creating creative backdrops and sets. So I apologize if my setup doesn’t represent Shikis character traits all that much, or that I can’t tell you various details about the show. If you are curious about Idolmaster or other similar shows, there is already plenty of information and fan wikis you can study. And of course the music can be very enjoyable – at least if you don’t mind heavy sugar coated tunes.
Thoughts about the picture:
One of the main reasons why I ordered this figure was her theme of alchemy and adventure. So even if I’m not familiar with the series, I had a great vision for a photo. I wanted to craft a whole captains quarter for her. You know, the ones with the big glass windows and the organ in the rear of each pirate ship ever depicted in movies. However, that would mean I have to assemble a whole miniature room, complete with stained glass and everything. And that on the other hand would mean a ton of work. Therefore I procrastinated on this set for a long time and even did a quick side project in between. When I finally get on with it, I started by replicating the little pink chest that comes with the figure. The base model of the chest turned out pretty well, but somehow I screwed up the paint finish. After that I procrastinated even further for a week or two.
One day I went out for shopping and found this rather large wooden chest in one of those decoration stores, that are a real treasure box for every toy photographer. I immediately came up with the idea to use the box as a corpus for the room and simply adding windows to it. In order to do so, I carved a groove into some plywood bars and used the small glass pieces of a mosaic tile as windowpanes. This technique went surprisingly well and after I cut holes into the treasure chest, I simply glued the whole construct to the back of the box. Since there were also some leftover tiles from the stone floor of my coffee shop doll house, I used those as well to create a more interesting looking floor. And because I saved up so much time by using a preassembled box, rather than building everything from scratch, I used some of that time for crafting vines out of small paper leaves and wire.
To conclude the setup I went to a bank and bought some coin rolls with the smallest coins our currency has to offer. Originally I planned to craft scaled treasure piles as well but since I couldn’t figure out a method to make detailed looking coins in a 1/7 scale, I scrapped this idea and went for real currency. The small chest I used for the final picture is also one I bought, rather than my self-made ones or the one that comes with the figure. For the shooting I completed the chest with two hand drawn treasure maps and some empty bottles which luckily I already had laying around.
Canon EOS 80D, 16-35mm lense / ISO 200 /Exposure time 1/10 sec. /aperture: F/7.1
Time and effort: Since I used the box as prebuild room for the figure the most time-consuming thing to do was crafting the paper vines. Altogether I spent around 25-30 hours on this set.
Costs of the props: Not counting the real money used on the photo (approximately 12 Euro) the set wasn’t that expensive. The treasure chest, as well as the tiles didn’t cost much and many other things used for this composition I already owned. So I was able to bring down the total costs for this set to about 25-30 Euro.