During my Professional Practice class in school, an artist visited my class. The artist was Jane Alden Stevens.
Jane showed us how to take pictures of our work and how to use lighting correctly.
When shooting 3D work, be aware that the angle you shoot at can significantly affect the way your art looks in the resulting photograph.
Lighting setups for 3D Artwork:
- plan, curved, medium gray background
- single light source
- place reflector on shadow tide (to eliminate the shadow)
Two light set up
- fill light is always weaker than main light
Three light set up
- back light can come from above or the side
Lighting setups for 2D Artwork:
- two lights at 45” angle to artwork
- even lighting
- camera back parallel to artwork (use a copy stand for smaller 2D artwork)
The same principles apply when setting up for shooting outdoors.
Always keep the camera back parallel to 2D art.
Check for even lighting:
- take a meter reading of a gray card in each section of 2D artwork. If your exposure settings are virtually the same for each location, your lighting is even. If not, adjust lights as necessary. (Do not need if camera can fix it.)
- aim the light at a highly reflective surface that will bounce the light back to the art (can reduce glare and start shadows)
- creating a “tent” of translucent material around an object can remove unwanted reflections
Before taking the Picture (on camera):
Shooting mode auto
Light metering method
Evaluate or centered weighted average
- ISO sensitivity
- 200 or less (ideally), but no more than 400
- Image quality
- Jpeg Normal
- Image size
- Jpeg Medium (or large)
- Flash off
- White balance - AWB or Auto (Automatic white balance)
The white balance enables you to take pictures in which whites look white (All other colors will look correct)
You can see Jane's website here: http://janealdenstevens.com/