Accurate Representation

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happyhippy

happyhippy

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I am not entirely sure either, but let me have a go:

A polarizing filter is used, among other things, to cut out glare/reflection on glass, ice, metal...perhaps even just things? It is not dependent upon the light source being polarized, people seem to use it everywhere (unless sunlight is polarized...). So - couldn't you dispense with the polarized light source and just use the polarizing filter? This would provide much more available light, and should still get rid of any glare.

Once again - I am venturing into something I know nothing about, so please someone correct me if I am wrong.

AFAIK only sunlight is polarized, mostly when the sun is at 45 degrees.

As for getting a pro lens, I agree that for taking "photographs" it isn't amazingly important but for something like this I could really dowith something better as its more of a record than an actual photograph.
 

dipstick

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I would not skip the grey card and "just adjust it with curves". Unless you have a reference you will have a hard time getting the colors accurate.

A grey card will help you both with setting the exposure correct and give you a reference for white balance when you are editing your raw images.
 

Helen B

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Light gets polarized to some degree when it is specularly reflected off a non-conducting surface. The degree of polarization depends a lot on the angle of reflection, apart from other things. For glass the 'Brewster Angle' (the incident angle at which polarization is the greatest) is about 53 degrees - at all other angles the reflection will be partially polarized. The Brewster Angle is different for different materials.

What this means in practice when copying artwork is that the specular reflections from the lights will probably be only partially polarized rather than fully polarized. The usual thing is to set the lights at about 45 degrees so that the specular reflections from a flat surface or nearly flat surface will miss the camera entirely. (You can also rig up a black curtain around the camera to virtually eliminate direct reflections.)

Because the surface of an oil painting, for example, may not be anywhere near flat there could be specular reflections off the surface of a heavily textured oil painting from the lights to the camera. Because the incident angle of these reflections must be around 22 degrees, the proportion of polarized light may not be high, and hence a polarizing filter on the camera may not have much effect on them. Some people therefore polarize the light at the sources as well as at the camera. One polarizer is set up at a time - the sequance is usually one light, the camera, then the rest of the lights.

When copying artwork I usually include Kodak Q-60 targets or the miniature Macbeth Colorchecker at the edge of the frame.

For flat subjects depth of field is not important, therefore it is usually best to set the aperture to the lens' optimum aperture for sharpness. This is probably closer to f/5.6 or maybe f/8 than f/11 for the smaller formats.

Best,
Helen
 
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happyhippy

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Thank you for the reply! You have cleared up my doubts :).

Does anyone have any tips on framing the shot perfectly? I've just been doing it by eye and it seems to me working ok but I'm sure it cant be accurate.

Chears
 

JerryPH

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Maybe I'm not a camera snob

Neither am I, but I am a realist.

I suppose you think decent photos were non existent before all this pricey stuff came out?

I suppose that depends on what you call pricey, my friend. Even having a picture taking device in the "olden days" was quite elitist back then. And no, I am not so naiive to think that there was never a good picture taken before 2008. I've seen pictures from the 30's and 40's that took my breath away. Doesn't change a thing. Kit lenses today are not the equal of a more expensive lens.

Now, there are a few examples where cheap doesn't mean low quality. Look at the 50mm for either Nikon or Canon. However, if you think that a kit lens is the equal of something like a 70-200 F/2.8 or ANY lens of higher quality... thats where you are in for a rude awakening once you learn for yourself.

I am not knocking you or your setup, but there is a good reason why good glass is expensive. If there wasn't, no one would buy them. This is not "The Emperor's New Clothes"... there is a very evident and visual improvement.

The kit lens isn't that bad...

Early on, I thought that I had a problem with my lowly and very (locally) dissed Nikkor 18-200 VR lens. I sent it in and as a favor, they gave me that 18-55 kit lens. I used it for about 10 pictures, looked at the results and took it off my camera. Yes, it *is* that bad. If you have nothing to compare it to, of course you might think the results are ok. Put a GOOD lens on that same camera, and it is as if it was a totally other tool. Pics suddenly come out more vibrant, sharper and so much more clearer.

Can it take pictures? Sure, but the quality was so poor compared to what I was used to, that I would rather NOT take pictures for the 3 weeks that my lens was gone rather than use it to take ONE more picture with that lens.

Thats not being a snob, thats a FACT. I would rather NEVER take another picture in my life, if someone gave me a D3 for free with a kit lens on it with the stipulation that I could not use another lens... thats how bad it sucks in my eyes. Thats why I tell people who purchase new cameras NOT to purchase the kit lenses. You get what you pay for.

Whether or not you can afford it is something totally else... but don't think any kit lens will match up to a more expensive lens. Thats just digging your head in the sand to the obvious. This has nothing to do with you or me, how little you paid or how much more I may have paid... its an easily proven fact that has been proven countless times over by more than one person.
 

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Neither am I, but I am a realist.



I suppose that depends on what you call pricey, my friend. Even having a picture taking device in the "olden days" was quite elitist back then. And no, I am not so naiive to think that there was never a good picture taken before 2008. I've seen pictures from the 30's and 40's that took my breath away. Doesn't change a thing. Kit lenses today are not the equal of a more expensive lens.

Now, there are a few examples where cheap doesn't mean low quality. Look at the 50mm for either Nikon or Canon. However, if you think that a kit lens is the equal of something like a 70-200 F/2.8 or ANY lens of higher quality... thats where you are in for a rude awakening once you learn for yourself.

I am not knocking you or your setup, but there is a good reason why good glass is expensive. If there wasn't, no one would buy them. This is not "The Emperor's New Clothes"... there is a very evident and visual improvement.



Early on, I thought that I had a problem with my lowly and very (locally) dissed Nikkor 18-200 VR lens. I sent it in and as a favor, they gave me that 18-55 kit lens. I used it for about 10 pictures, looked at the results and took it off my camera. Yes, it *is* that bad. If you have nothing to compare it to, of course you might think the results are ok. Put a GOOD lens on that same camera, and it is as if it was a totally other tool. Pics suddenly come out more vibrant, sharper and so much more clearer.

Can it take pictures? Sure, but the quality was so poor compared to what I was used to, that I would rather NOT take pictures for the 3 weeks that my lens was gone rather than use it to take ONE more picture with that lens.

Thats not being a snob, thats a FACT. I would rather NEVER take another picture in my life, if someone gave me a D3 for free with a kit lens on it with the stipulation that I could not use another lens... thats how bad it sucks in my eyes. Thats why I tell people who purchase new cameras NOT to purchase the kit lenses. You get what you pay for.

Whether or not you can afford it is something totally else... but don't think any kit lens will match up to a more expensive lens. Thats just digging your head in the sand to the obvious. This has nothing to do with you or me, how little you paid or how much more I may have paid... its an easily proven fact that has been proven countless times over by more than one person.

A lot of persons get swept away with the philosophy "It's not the equipment, it's the photographer." Well, that's not exactly accurate. Yes, the photographer's ability is paramount but that ability is useless without the right tools. Many like to refer to Ansel Adams but they ignore the reasons why he didn't use a Kodak Brownie.
 

confucious

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If a painter buys top of the line acrylics (FAR more expensive per small tube than the regular), and defends his purchase by claiming the colours are richer, produce more shine/presence, last longer etc., does this make him a paint snob?

Fact is - there are piss poor paints, and very expensive high end ones. Do you think pros use the cheap ones? No. Why not, because they are snobs? no. Because they are discerning and want a good quality output.

Yes, it IS the skill of the artist, but it is also the quality of the tools he is working with.
 
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happyhippy

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I think there is more need for a better lens with a digital camera than there is with a film camera. In my eyes the only advantage in terms of image quality that you get with a digital is that "clean" feeling, personally I don't like it but I cant afford dev costs.

You wouldn't notice a bad lens as much with film. If anything I think it would add to it, making it a bit rougher.
 

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Just a thought....

Did you know that you can rent a lens for a couple of days? You may want to consider that, rent it a few days before the big day and see how it works out. Then at the show use it and your old lens. I know your concerned about light but maybe a better lens will give you better pics.
 

CanAm

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A lot of persons get swept away with the philosophy "It's not the equipment, it's the photographer." Well, that's not exactly accurate. Yes, the photographer's ability is paramount but that ability is useless without the right tools. Many like to refer to Ansel Adams but they ignore the reasons why he didn't use a Kodak Brownie.

That's very true, but the kit lens isn't the cheapest lens you can get either. It does what it's supposed to- take okay pictures while being a pricepoint included accessory.

The problem I had with Jerry's comments are that his wording made it seem as if you can't be serious about photography without putting a few thousand into lenses.

I'm just happy to have a camera and lens that work well for me. If I ever feel the need to put down a few thousand on a lens, I'll do it.
 

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The problem I had with Jerry's comments are that his wording made it seem as if you can't be serious about photography without putting a few thousand into lenses.
No, that wasn't his meaning at all. I read his comments as meaning (correctly) that there IS a difference between the "kit lens" and high-end lenses. No one is required to spend more than is reasonable for their own budget in order to be "serious" but don't expect that the results will be the same as with higher-quality gear.
 

Alpha

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The simple moral of this story is that you shouldn't take on jobs that you aren't equipped to do.
 
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happyhippy

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I disagree! :p

I think you can do anything with some gaffa tape and some inteligence. The end result that I got was stunningly good! (considering), and the client is more than happy :)
 

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I disagree! :p

I think you can do anything with some gaffa tape and some inteligence. The end result that I got was stunningly good! (considering), and the client is more than happy :)

I do Fine Art Reproduction professionally and have tried very hard to resist commenting on this thread, but after your last comment I can't anymore.

No offense, but the client is just ignorant, and quite frankly so are you. When you don't realize what's possible, whatever you provide will look pretty good.

I'm glad the client is "happy" and I don't mean to come off as a jerk, I just get tired of constantly reshooting artwork that has been "professionally shot" by someone like you.

Ok, done venting, sorry about that.. :lol:
 

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