Session 1: a New Home

Our characters landed on Faroth Island and were greeted by the  captain of the guard, Binova Lotrimur, in the town square before the  who said they could live in the ruins.

Mr McGinty is a human who owns the general store.

Bru Irondale is the dwarven foreman of the of the Forge Dwarves, the sub-race descended of Mountain Dwarves of the mainland. He is always up for making deals for coal and iron ore. Irondale employs ten strong dwarven smiths and eight human cart drivers/forge workers.

Sloth Breakerbar is the half-giant foreman of the Ruddy Vein iron mine. He wears a vest of giant skin tanned from the hide of a defeated enemy. It is lined with his set of chisels and a two hammer loops on the back. He wants strong workers to move rock, fifteen miners is all he has at the moment.

Cubbard Dovetail is a gnome master carpenter who is good friends with Sloth. They can often be seen telling stories sitting next to the evening fire ring. Dovetail and his small community of gnomes fix the carts and help with the detail work on the ships build by Gollard Sudbarn.

Gallard is a minotaur shipwright who helps maintain the southern islands fishing fleet. He is slightly smaller than Bru, and doesn’t get along with Bru, Sloth or Binova. He likes Cubbard but does not socialize and mostly spends his time in his shop. Sudbarn employes one gnome and seven human carpenters.

Near Gallard’s warehouse is the Noorthaus Fishery where the salting and canning of fish and other seafood is done. There is a fleet of small fishing boats that travel to the south islands and the fishery has many buildings stringing along the islands. The fishery is a confederation of fishers run by three minotaur captains. Gallard used to be one of them, and has some remaining shares in the association. Noorthaus fish are notable for their pepper, sage and other spices imported by southern fishermen. There are reported to be two mermen, ten humans, three water elves and two half orcs as officers and mates in this band of fishermen.

Far away from water is Drafter Crushton, a half-elf ranger, rancher and owner of the Faroth livery. He lives near the Faroth mansion. He invited the refugees to clear themselves each a stall and camp out for a day. There are four elves and six humans as ranger ranch hands: Jimmy, Billy, Illybae, Hadreus, Eesehedche, Nillafin, Rohlim, Knuckles, Vungean and Moffinian. Haderus and Nillafin volunteered to lead the refugees into the ruins to help clear them.

Sounds! From the south of the ruined temple, wood is heard to be breaking. Hadreus will be taking Fanzie, Manga, and Fabeus. To the north, a pile of stones shifts and falls. Nillafin will take Trabeaus, Othoric, Kevbin, Namanon and Grotto.

Thanksgiving Bannister 

I enrolled my kids and my parents and my sister, niece and brother in law in making decorations for our new bannister post. We drew animal themed shapes and Bob and I cut them out of some birch plank with my scroll saw. I used a plastic brush wheel in my drill press to clean up the cuts and sand away the pencil marks. A few pilot holes in each and I let the kids tack them into ace with small finishing nails.


Gimp multi-layer technique

When I work on a photo using the GIMP, I typically follow a technique that focuses either on the Grain Merge filter or the Value filter.

Before I decide the values for any filter, I create two layers, copied from the base picture:
– BW
– CE
And later I might create some masks or shade layers, and I’ll explain those later.

My base image:Screenshot at 2016-09-10 21:19:08.png
First: the desaturated layer (BW) I often use a luminance style desaturation, since that provides more intersting contrast. I might use the Brightness-Contrast filter on that layer afterwards, in order to boost that layers effect. When it comes to using that layer, recently I use it as a Value layer at full opacity. I used to use it as a Grain Merge layer at about 50% opacity, but I tend to find that effect too bold.


Next, I use a color enhance step on the CE layer. This I tend never to use at full opacity, that would be absurd. I generally apply a color enhanced layer at about 20-40% opacity as visually appropriate. This helps me get to the saturation level I pre-visualized for the photo.

screenshot-at-2016-09-10-211847Recently, I’ve been using a channel-mixer layer. In this case, i clone the original layer as I would normally, but I choose to Channel Mixer, and often I pull down the blue and green channels to boost the golden or red hues of the scene. You don’t have to do this much, even 10% for each channel can be plenty. And when I do this, I might apply it as a Color or as a Soft Light layer in the mix.

Some times I apply some sharpening, but most of the time I tend not to, as Unsharp Mask can be a very heavy hammer to wield on a photo.

The combination of a desaturated Value layer enhances constrast, the channel mixer and or the color enhancement layer provides the color boost I typically want.  Some sharpening is optional. Please try the technique and let me know what kind of results you find!