I posted this in another forum but I thought I might post it here too. Here's a problem/setup I'm contemplating on how to approch. I want to photograph a antique "Air Cane". (made in the 1850's, shot round balls, more of a novelty....) Anyway, it looks mostly like a cane with the top half a steel cylinder with an inscription running down the length and engraving all around the cylinder. It has a "patina(sp?)" to the steel as well as having a damascus "twist" to the steel. The cylinder part is probably 24 - 28 inches long and the inscription about 12" The diameter is probably about 2 - 2/14 inches a the top and tappers only slightly down to the middle part. The problem is getting the inscription and engraving to stand out and be viewable but still see it around the curve of the cylinder. Looking at it normaly you have to rotate it slowly to see each plane or small section of the curve as it's catches the light at the right angle. It's been suggested I try "rollout" photography but that is way beyond my equipment & capabilites. Anyway, I'm thinking of trying a ring flash with two regular flashes glancing down either side of the cane and as small an appature as possible on a 60mm macro lense. I'm thinking a black cloth background would be best. Should I forget the ring flash and just have a weak fill-in from the top, side, 45 degree angle? Should I try a straight from above shot or slightly angled? Different type or color background? TIA for any suggestions.