Photographing Shiny Things

Discussion in 'Shooting, Hunting and Fishing' started by Effendi, Feb 4, 2013.

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  1. Mr Bollox presented a problem. I am not an expert but I played around with this sort of thing for a while and am also open to advice, guidance and input:

    My own solution was based around this kind of thing. I made my cube out of a 2'x2'x2' cardboard box that I cut the sides out of. I replaced the sides with white cotton bought cheap from Leicester market, for the light sources I picked up a couple of on sale anglepoise type lamps at B&Q and put in some high power daylight light bulbs from the hobby shop. Backgrounds varied as appropriate for the item being photo'ed. You have to lay with the lighting until you have no shadow and no real glinty highlights - like I said I had a couple of anglepoises but I used to use another lamp too occasionally to get the desired effect.

    As a rule never do a straight down pic or a straight side on pic - it looks too engineering plan. Go for an angled view and arrange the bits and pieces with a prop or two to fire the onlookers imagination and tell a story.

    Just my thoughts. Input welcome.

    • Like Like x 1
  2. Can't beat what you've got for my money, made a few myself: wire coat hanger black nasty'd onto a housebrick, poked through the back of the light box and crimped on the item: makes chrome fishing reels 'float' in air, and dead easy to find the edges for photoshopping into articles/printed media afterward.

    Due to closeness to the subject, the more light going in, the better for max depth of field as well. Try inverting and hand-holding another lens in front of the camera lens for macro shots of hallmarks, serial numbers and so on.
  3. A polarising filter?
  4. Every day's a school day.

    As suggested the main issue is the flash or key light pinging light off the subject. Bouncing a constant source such as a desk lamp or powerful torch off a white piece of card also works well. I rarely use flash but that's because my day job involves lighting with constant source lights from 50w up to 15k Watt - although increasingly LED lights are beginning to become realistically priced.

    If have something like this in my run bag which takes AA batteries is native 5600k (daylight) and is dimmable. £32 from Amazon


    I even stick a little bit bog roll (unused) over the flash of my leica compact to soften the flash for upskirt shots and so forth..

    Attached Files:

  5. Put some trousers on? :)


    [Serious mode] Try something other than plain white for the faces of the lightbox, too.

    ( Cube mapping - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia )
  6. My suggestion? Daylight.

    I'll have a little go tomorrow and get back to you.
  7. I was photo'ing badges and insignia so I needed a nice sharp image and a nice constant light source so I used my homemade light box. I messed around with a variety of light sources, direct and indirect flash and also outdoors. The best repeatable results came from the lightbox for my requirements.
  8. I tend to use natural light.
  9. Is this one of yours?

  10. FrosteeMARIA

    FrosteeMARIA LE Gallery Guru

    Angled flashgun works for me, and faff with aperture, and have a plain background to shoot against.
  11. I occasionally have to photograph silver bullion or coins and silver is the most reflective element on earth. I'm not very good at it, but the best results I've had have been at a slight angle in good daylight with no flash. I try to auto-focus on edges or focus manually. Thanks to others for their input.

    Photography straight-on with flash tends to give a result like The LORD decending in Glory, and therefore tends to somewhat lack detail.
  12. Apologies for the shite image. I like diffusers and got pissed at having to pay around 20 - 30 sovs for one everytime I lost one or it got nicked. I was staring at a plastic medicine bottle one day and it reminded me of a diffuser so I cut the poury part off and it fitted like a dream. Even if it gets nicked it'll only cost me a couple of quid to replace. I have had people at shows comment that they are going to nick the idea.

    If you play with the angle of the flash, stick a tissue in the diffuser or some coloured paper it can create alsorts of effects.