Win a bunch of tools from Truly Garden and Loma Creek! this week in the Gear forum!
  • Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
permaculture forums growies critters building homesteading energy monies kitchen purity ungarbage community wilderness fiber arts art permaculture artisans regional education skip experiences global resources the cider press projects digital market permies.com private forums all forums
this forum made possible by our volunteer staff, including ...
master stewards:
  • Nicole Alderman
  • r ranson
  • Anne Miller
  • Pearl Sutton
  • James Freyr
  • Mike Haasl
  • paul wheaton
  • Dave Burton
stewards:
  • Joylynn Hardesty
  • Jocelyn Campbell
  • Joseph Lofthouse
garden masters:
gardeners:
  • Carla Burke
  • Steve Thorn
  • Eric Hanson

using a photo-light-box to take photos

 
master steward & author
Posts: 16782
Location: Left Coast Canada
4003
books chicken cooking fiber arts sheep writing
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I caved in and got a light box for taking photos of yarn and other stuff.  The theory is that these photos will look more professional and accurate.  

What do you think?  Is it worth it?  

The problem is, if I wait for natural light, I have maybe one hour out of every two weeks when the light is good for taking photos.  If I'm not home... well.

handspun-linen-photo.jpg
light box
light box
handspun-linen-in-natural-light.jpg
natural light
natural light
handspun-corridale-in-natural-light.jpg
natural light
natural light
handspun-medum-natural-wool-yarn.jpg
light box
light box
 
r ranson
master steward & author
Posts: 16782
Location: Left Coast Canada
4003
books chicken cooking fiber arts sheep writing
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
The pictures look pretty flat to me.  I wonder if some of these buttons on my camera would help.  
 
r ranson
master steward & author
Posts: 16782
Location: Left Coast Canada
4003
books chicken cooking fiber arts sheep writing
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Does anyone have any thoughts on how to make the photos better with the lightbox?

Are they better?  I can see them on my screen, but I don't know what they look like on other people's computers
 
Posts: 60
Location: Durham, NC
urban woodworking homestead
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I agree that the lightbox pictures look flat.  But you'll make it work!

I have limited experience with this but here are some questions.  What lights are you using?  You want high-CRI bulbs (such as an LED with a CRI of 90+, or a full spectrum fluorescent.)  This will give you more color range.

What type of diffuser are you using on your light sources?  Different materials dull or sharpen the light.

How many lights are you using? What is the placement of the lights?  I've found that I need at least two.  One overhead at an angle and one accent light.

Hope this helps.

 
r ranson
master steward & author
Posts: 16782
Location: Left Coast Canada
4003
books chicken cooking fiber arts sheep writing
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Thanks for the reply.

The lightbox is Amazonbasic and it says the lights are

High output built-in LED lights for handheld photography with a camera or smartphone. Lights are positioned for optimum contrast, and provide 5600k daylight balanced LEDs with high Color Rendering Index (CRI) for consistent color. An extra light provides directional light modelling like in a photo studio, giving better highlights, contrast, and shape to product images.



I quite like the box as it's easy to set up and compact to store.  It's much larger than I expected too.  Taking photos at night is also a bonus.

But if the pictures don't look better than I can take without, then I'm not sure it's worth the expense.  I suspect the problem is user error as I have all these buttons on my camera I don't know how to use.  
 
Posts: 158
27
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
In school we used a large sheet of milk (opaque-white) plexiglas suspended from the ceiling and the bottom laid onto saw horses to sweep into a flat surface. We would use paper or cardboard underneath to mask off areas around clear objects to create interesting effects with light coming from below as well as other effects.

I’ve managed this type of photography using just incandescent lights reflected off a white surface like foam core board to get a window effect with secondary light sources to create fill or just additional boards positioned just off camera to use reflected light from the main source to help model the subject.
 
r ranson
master steward & author
Posts: 16782
Location: Left Coast Canada
4003
books chicken cooking fiber arts sheep writing
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
playing with the camera settings a bit

Better?

still at a loss how to photograph the wool yarn in the skein.  
photographing-yarn-with-a-lightbox.jpg
yarn
yarn
 
master steward
Posts: 10570
Location: Pacific Northwest
4252
hugelkultur kids cat duck forest garden foraging fiber arts sheep wood heat homestead
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Hmmm, the skein is small, so that makes it a bit more challenging.

Idea! I'm wondering if you could make a background of white/cream fluffy wool, and then put the skein on that. It would add more texture, a bit of a "story," make it less boring than a plain white background, and give you a way to add structure. You could fluff up certain areas of the wool roving/fluffy wool to give a way to drape the skein down.

Might be something worth a "shot."

And now to bed with me! Maybe my dreams will give me some ideas!
 
Posts: 412
Location: Abkhazia · humid subtropical
44
cat forest garden trees solar wood heat woodworking
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I made a small experiment. Picture taken in direct sunlight (as probably obvious by the shadows) on a Nikon D7000 in RAW mode. ISO 100, Aperture F8.

The two attached Pictures are from the same RAW file. The first one uses sRGB, the second uses Adobe RGB colorspace.
I can try to take the same photograph with artificial light, once the sun has set.

EDIT: In a modern browser, they should look the same.
DSC_5404.jpg
sRGB
sRGB
DSC_5404_01.jpg
Adobe RGB
Adobe RGB
 
Posts: 126
Location: South Australia
7
duck chicken solar
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
They don't look flat at all to me. The first one maybe, but it's also a little underexposed.
I think they're coming out really well from the light box. You will never get huge contrast as the whole idea of the box is to get light in from many directions.
There are a few really easy Photoshop techniques to really make images pop that might be worth experimenting with?
 
Rob Lineberger
Posts: 60
Location: Durham, NC
urban woodworking homestead
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Nicole Alderman wrote: It would add more texture, a bit of a "story," make it less boring than a plain white background, and give you a way to add structure.



I was going to say the same thing!  The white look works if you are using it in a website or something where you want the backgrounds to all blend in and the product to pop.  But if you want an interesting look, try stuff scattered around.  Needles/crochet hooks or whatever this is used for, leaves, etc.  A pastel robin's egg blue background might look good.  Take a roll of kraft paper, paint it the right color, and lay it under everything.  Curve it up in the back to cover the back wall too.  Then try something like the depth of field trick (move the camera far away, zoom in on the subject so the background blurs. Depends on lens.)  Lots of things to try.  It took my ex about 3-4 weeks to get the hang of the light tent.

Your latest effort is a marked improvements so you're getting somewhere.
 
r ranson
master steward & author
Posts: 16782
Location: Left Coast Canada
4003
books chicken cooking fiber arts sheep writing
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I'm wondering about adding more stuff.  

My understanding is etsy has or is creating a system for identifying pictures but it needs the picture to have minimal clutter and be on a white background.  But this is just something I heard, I don't know how accurate it is.  
 
r ranson
master steward & author
Posts: 16782
Location: Left Coast Canada
4003
books chicken cooking fiber arts sheep writing
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
It's been a while.

But I wanted to share with you that after four weeks of taking the free photography class a year with my camera, I'm taking much better photos in the light box!


Learning to use the histogram was a huge help:
 
Did you ever grow anything in the garden of your mind? - Fred Rogers. Tiny ad:
Switching from electric heat to a rocket mass heater reduces your carbon footprint as much as parking 7 cars
http://woodheat.net
  • Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
Boost this thread!