15th July 2004, 12:32 AM
Photographing glass covered artwork
I need to photo inventory all the artwork paintings in my house, for archival and insurance purposes. The bulk of my artwork is glass covered which presents 3 problems....
1) I get reflections of the room from any angle.
2) I can't use my flash because of reflections.
3) My auto-focus can't focus because it sees the reflected image, not the painting behind. Manual focus is difficult as well.
I need to shoot straight on to avoid trapezoiding.
Anyone with a solution??? (Removing the glass is not an option)
15th July 2004, 01:54 AM
Use TWO light sources set at equi-distance both at 45 degree angles to the artwork. The light from both sources at such an angle cancells out each other's reflection.
If a simple and inexpensive 2-light set-up is non-feasible for whatever reason, start thinking about using a view-camera.
Totally dependant on the size of the artwork...(if it is really small),
You can use reflected 45 degree light (sorry, I can't remember the technical name for this lighting technique, but it;s used for 'straight-on' macro shots of highly/mirror reflective objects like coins).
If you need further assistance, PM me. I have photographed framed paintings for catalogues before.
Please forgive my spelling errors...as my gramatical ones. I suffer from fatigue as well as alpha-dsylexia.
15th July 2004, 01:55 AM
Have a black piece of cloth with a hole cut just for the lens... as for the flash, bounce it off the ceiling.. but make sure the flash is hidden away from the reflection.
Otherwise u need slave flashes to the side of the frame or have an extension cord to move the flashes to the side.
Last edited by willyfoo; 15th July 2004 at 01:58 AM.
15th July 2004, 02:17 AM
Thanks Feinwerkbau & willyfoo
Feinwerkbau - Hadn't thought of using 2 lights. Gonna try to dig up a pair of floods and try. I will probably have to move each painting to a setup area for consistancy.
As for the focus, the paintings are at the smallest, 24in X 22in upto 56 X 40. With my wide angle I need to be about 5 feet from the painting to see it fill the frame. (rules out a Macro!)
As for your spelling & grammar, no need to apologise. I see way worse just reading e-mail from college grads.
willyfoo - I thought about a lens drape, but it would be way too large and unwieldy to use in this case. I would have to make a tent for it to work.
Any other ideas out there????
15th July 2004, 03:45 AM
A darkened room would work just as well as a lens-drape.
I have replied you via PM.
15th July 2004, 03:48 AM
To add, you might be better off shooting from further back at a longer lens setting to minimise barelling and pin-cushioning, unless you're using a dedicated macro lens.
This may also assist in avoiding undesirable photographer/environmental elements creeping into the picture. Wear black or dark clothing...for obvious reasons.