Photographing A2 Drawings

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by Veronica_Castillo, Aug 7, 2009.

  1. Veronica_Castillo

    Veronica_Castillo TPF Noob!

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    Hello all,

    I don't have a camera, but I'm looking to buy one. That's why I'm here. To ask what camera would solve this problem I have.

    I need to scan serveral A2 Format Drawings into my PC, but it's a tedious task doing this. I need to cut the drawings into four parts and scan them one by one and reconstruct them in Photoshop...

    Buying a A2 Big format scanner is not an option. Because it costs more than 5000 $. Which is rather expensive for my taste.

    So I came with the idea of photographing the A2 Drawing. But before buying a cam, I want to know which one will give me a good quality. It need not to be perfect but as good as it can get.

    Any suggestions?

    Thanks,

    Veronica.
     
  2. tirediron

    tirediron Watch the Birdy! Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Cross-posting is neither appropriate nor necessary.
     
  3. bigtwinky

    bigtwinky No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    If you need to scan them, why not look at a pro printshop in your area who have the equipment you need and get them to do it?

    As good as it can get involves alot of equipment... Camera, lens and lights are a must (along with the softboxes and other accessories) and the knowledge on using this equipment.

    I've attempted taking some pictures of a friend's art with just my camera and filter outdoors on an overcast day in the shade and it came out so-so.

    As good as it can get with photography can be pretty expensive.
     
  4. robertwsimpson

    robertwsimpson No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    scanning is your best bet, since any lens will distort the geometry around the edges of your drawings.
     
  5. Moglex

    Moglex TPF Noob!

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    As others have said, if you can get the drawings scanned that's probably your best bet.

    Other than that, more information would be useful.

    What file size (in pixels) will these drawings need to be?

    If they are only to be displayed on a monitor then life is much easier than if you need to make larg(ish) prints.

    I'd suggest borrowing a reasonable P&S (point and shoot - i.e. not a DSLR) and trying it out. As others have mentioned, outdoors on a day with no shadows is best. If the results, after some post processing, are up to standard, just get yourself a good quality P&S.

    BTW, if this is for monitor display, don't fill the image area with the drawing. Use about 2/3 of the available area to avoid quality drop off at the edges - you'll still have a bigger file than you need with any camera over 5MP.
     
  6. Veronica_Castillo

    Veronica_Castillo TPF Noob!

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    Hello all,

    Thanks for your replies.

    I have a 1000$ budget for this -project-. And I think it will be
    a good investment if the quality is worthwhile.

    The Line Drawings are A2 in format. Sometimes they are made with pencil alone, or
    at other times they are made with black ink.

    When I scan them:
    Grayscale
    300 DPI
    7000 px to 10000 px (when joined)

    I don't need to print them back again, they will stay on the monitor.
    Simple modifictions I would need to do with them, is to use the fill bucket tool in Photoshop.

    I'm a realy starter at this, Just now I had to google: P&S to see what it meant. But if you have a setting that you think will work or that you have tried, share it away and I'll do the rest of research.

    Thanks,

    Veronica
     
  7. JerryPH

    JerryPH No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    You need a scanner, NOT a camera. ;)
     
  8. Josh66

    Josh66 Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    ...I don't know.

    I would go for a camera.

    That you essentially have to destroy the art in order to scan it dictates a camera to me...
     
  9. Moglex

    Moglex TPF Noob!

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    You would need a scanner if you wanted to get the maximum resolution image possible.

    As you need only sufficient resolution for a monitor a camera will do perfectly well if you can get the quality you require (which should be easily possible).

    Destroying the image is not an issue if you use a bureau with an A2 scanner.
     
  10. Josh66

    Josh66 Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    The OP said that a scanner like that was not an option.

    If the only options are destroy the work, or use a camera - I would use a camera.
     
  11. Dwig

    Dwig TPF Noob!

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    So the big questions are:

    1. What final resolution do you need?

    2. How faithful a reproduction do you need?

    If you are willing to accept an effective resoluiton of 100-125ppi then it might be possible to do the job with a camera and lens combination costing no more than $1000USD. There would be many options, but something along the order of a Nikon D5000 kit (body and 18-55 zoom) plus a 50mm f/1.8 AF lens would make in under a grand.

    The kit lens on any brand or model is rather unsuitable for the task as they have too much barrel and/or pincushion distortion and too uneven image quality across the image to do decent copywork. You would really want a true macro (e.g. Nikon's Micro-Nikkor 60mm f/2.8 AF-s), but these are too expensive to squeeze into your budget along with a decent body. Most manufacturers 50mm f/1.8 lenses will do decent copywork when the originals are largers than standard letter size (US Letter or A4). Your A2 originals would pose no problem for a conventional 50mm lens.

    A roughly 12mp camera, like the Nikon D5000 and D90, yield images roughtly 2800x4200 pixels. When scaled to A2, the works out to something in the 115-125 ppi range. Quite a bit lower than the 7000x1000 pixel scans you have been making so far. To get into the 50mp arena, more in the class of your scans, you'll need to look at medium format digital cameras and need to budget more like $15,000-30,000USD.
     
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2009
  12. jdwyer

    jdwyer TPF Noob!

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    go to kinkos. save yourself the time, money, and frustration of trying to get everything perfect.
     

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