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How to shoot a painting with M8


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I have done a little of that. I prefer to shoot them in natural dailight (diffuse) but always place a white balance card in one of the shots so I can get the colours right. Using a flash would be courting disaster unless you have a studio setup. The glass is a challenge. If you cannot remove the glass your best bet would be to use a polarizing filter to remove the reflection. You can also play with the angling of the painting so that you have no bright objects being reflected in the glass. The best is if what is reflected is evenly black. You may want to hang up a black cloth for this purpose. If this means you cannot shoot the painting head-on, don't worry about that. You can straighten up the perspective in PS afterwards. As for choice of lens I like to use a 75mm so I get some distance to the painting which makes it easier to control the reflections in the glass. Good luck.

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Hello, how to shoot best a painting with a M8. How to avoid reflection on the glas of the painting? Available gear is 28 2.0, 50 1.4, 75 2.0 and two Profoto flashes.


Same way as any other "35mm-style" camera, although the lack of reflex viewing and focusing makes setup a bit more difficult. Remove the glass if practicable, otherwise you just have to light it very carefully from the side(s) and exclude all other significant light so the camera is in the dark. Using polarisers both on the lights and on the lens can help. I'd use the 75mm if the room is big enough, otherwise the 50.


There's some very useful advice and discussion at Collection: Tips on Photographing Paintings , and googling for "photographing paintings" will find lots more - of very variable quality.

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I've had to do this with my M8 (I shot on a 1DS too) and had photograph a painting mounted behind glass which could not been removed from the wall. The trick is oblique (45 degree) and as even as possible lighting (which can be difficult if the painting is large) and to ensure minimal reflections by keeping the camera in the dark and/or using a large sheet of black card with a cut out for the lens. Don't use a pola filter just on the camera lens - it will have no useful effect - and try framing and adjusting after a few test shots have been reviewed. I found that the results from the M8 and 50/1.4 were very good - a great deal of very fine detail was recorded at f/8~11 and colour was very well handled too.

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Cross polarize. Get sheets of polarizing material from Calumet, BH or wherever. Mount a polarizing filter on the camera (hold it in your hand and turn. The mark will be either at 0 or 90). Tripod. Gray scale. For best results you can bracket your exposures and HDR merge in Photoshop. Otherwise use the gray scale to get the most from your exposure.


For info on lighting, camera setup and HSM settings, see my PDF


How to Print the Perfect Giclée: Kauai's Printmaker

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