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SamW

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#2
Here is a very simple light diffuser that I use made from two clothes hangers spread out with wood dowels across the ends and covered with freezer paper held on with tape. Here you see it hung over my vise and under a three bulb light fixture (led bulbs).

It can be just set on a table over your object, you just need some form of lighting above it. photo setup.jpg
 

SamW

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#3
Here is the kind of photo you can get with such a simple setup. The cartridge trap cover is highly curved, about the shape of a 1" pipe sliced in half lengthwise.

For your item, hold it in a candle flame to get some lamp black on it, rub off the excess and then position you eye where the item looks best. That is where you need the camera to be positioned.

Drilling cartridge trap e.jpg
 

papart1

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Thread starter #5
Sam.........surely your not useing a cell phone camera for these nice shots?
 

SamW

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#7
No cell phone...my "smart" phone stays home on the wall where it belongs!

I use a Canon G9 point and shoot camera that I have had for years...same one I use to take photos of the contest winners at the FEGA show for The Engraver Magazine.

I have seen some really nice photos taken with cell phone cameras.

The reason I posted the engraving photo is to show that even the very hard to photograph curved surface engraving can be nicely photographed with a simple setup and a little practice.
 

Crazy Horse

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#8
Here is a very simple light diffuser that I use made from two clothes hangers spread out with wood dowels across the ends and covered with freezer paper held on with tape. Here you see it hung over my vise and under a three bulb light fixture (led bulbs).

It can be just set on a table over your object, you just need some form of lighting above it. View attachment 45355
Upon first seeing the photo and not reading the post I thoughtitwas a kite. ;~) Now I'm busy looking for some wire hangers and trying to find my wife's freezer paper roll.
 
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#12
Creative. I've also used white plastic trash bags as diffusers too. Basically anything white that can diffuse the light will help in softening hard light sources. That Canon G9 is a great little camera! Does macros quite well I had about 30K clicks from mine when I sold it.
 

sam

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#14
As for diffusers, they accomplish two things. Obviously they diffuse the light, but they also, and more importantly IMO, provide a white surface that reflects onto the article you're photographing. When photographing metal, you're basically taking a picture of a mirror, the mirror being the surface of the metal. The mirror will reflect whatever it sees, like the room you're in, or sky and trees if you're outside, etc. Providing a white surface above the mirror can produce a beautiful photo.

For more information see my FEGA article from a few years ago on Photography For Engravers.
 

papart1

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Thanks Sam for the heads up. The last decent camera I possed want a 35 mm Petri, got to use the dark room on base and had a lot of fun, gotta get or make me a "tent". Rob
 

Archie Woodworth

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#18
I have used a large plastic globe (street light globe) ... just placed the item inside and pointed the camera into the open end to photograph. This worked great with virtually no shadows. Lights could be moved around the outside to create shading/shape to item. It could be used outside utilizing the 'big spot light in the sky" with great results.
https://www.superiorlighting.com/plastic-globes/large-neckless-globes/
 

sam

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#19
I have used a large plastic globe (street light globe) ... just placed the item inside and pointed the camera into the open end to photograph. This worked great with virtually no shadows. Lights could be moved around the outside to create shading/shape to item. It could be used outside utilizing the 'big spot light in the sky" with great results.
https://www.superiorlighting.com/plastic-globes/large-neckless-globes/
You're the second person who told me they used a glass light globe for photography. Sounds like a really good idea to me. I saw one in a junk store in Kansas but it would have been impractical to try to schlep the thing home on airlines. The plastic ones in your link look really good.
 

sam

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#20
As is always the case, it's 99% light and 1% camera. If the lighting is poor, a $10,000 camera will produce very poor results. SamW does a GREAT job with his old Canon G9 because he knows how to light the engraving perfectly. Give him a fancier and more expensive camera and the photos will be higher in resolution, but not necessarily better.
 

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