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Old 01-02-2007, 04:19 PM   #1
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Question How do you take a 'good' digital photo to upload? *merged*

I always have to scan my cards because I get a glare and sometimes no image at all when I try to take a digital photo. I have tried blocking the flash but it darkens the photo. I have tried all of the settings....indoor, underwater, portrait, etc. but I still have no luck. I see so many successful photos on the site. What is your secret?!?!?! TIA
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Old 01-02-2007, 04:27 PM   #2
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subscribing....forgot to click email notification so I'll know when someone has an answer..
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Old 01-02-2007, 05:03 PM   #3
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Good question. I would like to add, how do you get a digital photo to print a nice picture? We have a photosmart 1000 printer and even when I print on the best setting the pics all turn out grainy and ucky.
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Old 01-02-2007, 07:00 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mama26cs
Good question. I would like to add, how do you get a digital photo to print a nice picture? We have a photosmart 1000 printer and even when I print on the best setting the pics all turn out grainy and ucky.
I can't say much for the settings, etc. required for a good picture, but for a good print, the biggest thing I can say is to make sure your printer paper is the right brand for your printer (HP, Epson, etc.). DMIL has an HP printer, but she uses the Kodak paper, which says it is good for all printers, but the pictures she prints are "pixellated"---grainy, ucky, dots, and the finish is horrid. We use Epson paper for our Epson printer, and it looks darn near a photograph...

HTH!
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Old 01-02-2007, 07:05 PM   #5
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I'm not really an expert at taking pics...I usually scan them. However, I uploaded something the other day that was taken with my camera and I think it came out pretty good. I put in on my laptop with a white piece of paper behind it. I'm pretty sure that I used my zoom so that the camera wasn't right on top of the card so the flash wasn't as harsh. Then I edited my photo to get rid of the extra background. Here's a pic of the card I uploaded http://www.splitcoaststampers.com/ga...0&ppuser=75045. I know that was a little confusing, but I hope it helped! Good luck!
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Old 01-02-2007, 07:19 PM   #6
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I put my cards on a white sheet of paper which is under my work lamp. I put my camera on manual focus and with the light directly above the card I get a good picture.
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Old 01-03-2007, 04:58 AM   #7
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thank you all! Heidi419, I just tried zooming in. THAT IS THE TRICK! It worked beautifully on almost all settings.
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Old 01-03-2007, 07:18 AM   #8
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Yay!! I'm so glad that worked for you! Have fun taking more pictures!
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Old 01-03-2007, 12:56 PM   #9
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I did the macro settings.
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Old 01-03-2007, 01:18 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mama26cs
Good question. I would like to add, how do you get a digital photo to print a nice picture? We have a photosmart 1000 printer and even when I print on the best setting the pics all turn out grainy and ucky.
Something I discovered is that I had to have my digital camera on the very best setting. Each photo takes up tons more room on your memory card, but they will be much sharper and clearer.
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Old 02-05-2007, 08:39 AM   #11
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Default Secrets for fabulous photos of projects

Okay, Ladies. What are your best secrets for great photos of cards and scrapbook pages. I just haven't mastered it. Is it just like photographing the kids? Do I need to put my cards next to the window and use the flash for filler? I've seen your galleries. I know you all have some secrets to great photos. Any tips would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!
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Old 02-05-2007, 08:56 AM   #12
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I always try to use a white or black background. If the coloring is off in the photo, it makes it easy to color correct in Photoshop. I also always try to take the picture with the camera on the same level surface of the project. KWIM? Best of luck with picture taking. It's lots of fun!
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Old 02-05-2007, 08:57 AM   #13
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Best Way to Take Pictures of Cards - Please Advise

HTH,
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Old 02-05-2007, 08:58 AM   #14
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i have taken great pix of my work just haven't been able to figure out how to upload... anyway i use my macro setting for really close up shots and turn the flash off. good luck!
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Old 02-05-2007, 09:04 AM   #15
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I have a friend who's a talented photographer and her #1 tip; don't use the flash!!! So, I never use the flash. I try to use natural lighting, if possible. And I use the 'macro' setting on the camera; ie that lil' tulip setting. This is for when you're taking close up shots. And take lots of pics at various angles! Oh, and I use cardstock as my backdrop.

I hope Kurtis comes in here and posts; he has some great photos & tips (mind you he uses quite a bit of special lighting).

*sends Kurtis a PM*



Oh, and recently I discovered this blog by SCSer starofmay; I *looooooooooooooove* her style!!! Love it! I could *eat* it, it's so delicious! Hahaha. Anyways, she just posted some tips on how she takes photos. Take a look if you're interested;
kwerner design blog
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Old 02-05-2007, 09:21 AM   #16
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As avonlea said, DON"T USE THE FLASH. If you use the flash you will get a black border around your card, where that shadow is on the background. When I photograph my cards, I usually have two lights set up- one hard light and one soft light. With one hard and one soft, I get depth to the photo, and you don't get competing shadows.

If you angle your card, just a little then it will add varying height to your picture, giving it visual interest. If my main image on the left of the card I will angle the right side of the card slightly further from the camera to give it the right angle.

My set up for photographing my cards is attached to the post. I have the continuous piece of paper, so that I don't have a seem in the background of my photo.
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Old 02-05-2007, 09:26 AM   #17
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I forgot my photo editing info:

I use Adobe Photoshop 4 to edit the lighting levels, adjust any color balance that may be slightly off, and add my watermark.

A peice of white in the picture makes adjusting the color balance a breeze. All you have to do is select what is white in the picture and the software takes care of adjusting it.
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Old 02-05-2007, 09:27 AM   #18
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Wow, guys, thanks for all the tips! I guess I better break out the owner's manual to figure out which setting is the macro.
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Old 02-05-2007, 11:38 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by krabearkub
As avonlea said, DON"T USE THE FLASH. If you use the flash you will get a black border around your card, where that shadow is on the background. When I photograph my cards, I usually have two lights set up- one hard light and one soft light. With one hard and one soft, I get depth to the photo, and you don't get competing shadows.
Kurtis - your setup ROCKS! I was just admiring the photos on your blog the other day.
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Old 02-05-2007, 12:03 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scoopy
Kurtis - your setup ROCKS! I was just admiring the photos on your blog the other day.
thanks!
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Old 02-05-2007, 01:41 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by okiechic
Wow, guys, thanks for all the tips! I guess I better break out the owner's manual to figure out which setting is the macro.
Your macro setting is when you turn you button to the little flower that looks like a tulip. It's the same for all digitals. (pretty much). I just set up a shoot for a website thing. LOL! You should have seen it. Light coming in from all different directions. I actually did add a little flash but I baffled it with a piece of vellum. Natural lighting is the best but if that's not an option, mimic it with an OTT light or similar sun type light.
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Old 02-05-2007, 01:44 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GinaK
Your macro setting is when you turn you button to the little flower that looks like a tulip. It's the same for all digitals. (pretty much). I just set up a shoot for a website thing. LOL! You should have seen it. Light coming in from all different directions. I actually did add a little flash but I baffled it with a piece of vellum. Natural lighting is the best but if that's not an option, mimic it with an OTT light or similar sun type light.
Gina K.
BTW, If you happend to visit my blog, you will see the photo at the very top. It's a photo of acrylic blocks and stamps. I did that in the window on a sunny day. I used a flash head on but if I hadn't it would have been very dark like if you shoot people with the sun to their backs. You need fill flash for that. The cards are all done at 2:00 in the morning in the basement with an Ott light and a sun lamp.(Kinda' a knock off Ott light.)
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Old 02-05-2007, 01:51 PM   #23
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I've read all these tips and still my pictures suck. So please everyone forgive my terrible pictures and close your eyes......visualize the card in the best possible way.....and comment according to the beautiful picture in your head.....ooooohhhhmmmmm.....use it as a little relaxation session....aaaahhhhhh...
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Old 02-05-2007, 02:52 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by krabearkub
As avonlea said, DON"T USE THE FLASH. If you use the flash you will get a black border around your card, where that shadow is on the background. When I photograph my cards, I usually have two lights set up- one hard light and one soft light. With one hard and one soft, I get depth to the photo, and you don't get competing shadows.

If you angle your card, just a little then it will add varying height to your picture, giving it visual interest. If my main image on the left of the card I will angle the right side of the card slightly further from the camera to give it the right angle.

My set up for photographing my cards is attached to the post. I have the continuous piece of paper, so that I don't have a seem in the background of my photo.
Dang, Kurtis! Do you include professional photography among your list of talents?!

Dude, you should!

That set -up looks awesome! Mebbe I should get one . . .

And, you're so right about shooting at a "slight" angle; when the angle is too hard, I don't like the results--hurts my eyes to look at it!!!

It's taken me some practice to get the angle just right, but worth it!
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Old 02-05-2007, 05:10 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JulieHRR
Dang, Kurtis! Do you include professional photography among your list of talents?!

Dude, you should!

That set -up looks awesome! Mebbe I should get one . . .
I'm not a profesional yet...

And you should get a set up like it! I actually now take better pics of cards than people!
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Old 02-06-2007, 03:10 PM   #26
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SLIGHT angle. Slight, slight, slight! No more than 10 degrees. An L is 90 degrees. Cut that in half for 45 degrees. cut that in half for 22.5 degrees. Cut that in half for 10 (okay 11.25) degrees. I agree with Julie, the cards that are photographed at more than a slight angle are hard to look at!

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Old 02-11-2007, 12:12 PM   #27
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Question Digital Photos of cards

Can anyone give me some pointers on taking digital photos of cards!! I am improving with making cards, but they don't scan very well. I have been trying to take digital photos, but still can't seem to get good pics. I have a Cannon A7 Power shot camera. Do I need to have the light source behind the pic? or in front? HELP!
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Old 02-11-2007, 01:02 PM   #28
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From what I've read and found from my own experience you need to have as much light coming in from both sides and front. This prevents shadows, which is a problem I deal with. I think alot of people use a white backgroud. It bounces the light back. You might want to try finding the lightest/brightest spot in your house and take some pics there.

Others have mentioned propping your cards up, rather than flat, and take your pics that way. It seems to work well for me.
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Old 02-11-2007, 01:10 PM   #29
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The best tip someone gave me when I was having trouble scanning my cards was take the pic in natural light and if you can upload from your camera or camera card. So I stand my cards up in my bay window with the morning light and take the pic then...if any neighbors would see me it looks like I'm crouched down trying to take photos of their houses lol . Anyway, I use the close up setting on my camera, its a Kodak Easy Share, and I don't use a flash.
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Old 02-11-2007, 02:23 PM   #30
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Alll of th above information is great. I use natural light coming in through my sliding glass doors. I use my macro setting and absolutely no flash. If I can not take my pictures during the morning hours when the sun comes through my doors best than I take them in the very early afternoon when the light is okay but not the best. Any time after that I use the Ott lights in my craft room. Again, no flash.

Kurtis your set up is fabulous! I keep saying that I am going to go to my nearest camera shop one day and buy the professional lights and have one designated space. There is also a kit in a brief case that has the back drop and lighting to take professional pictures of small objects like cards etc.. I think the price is 199.00.

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Old 03-12-2007, 10:05 AM   #31
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wow! What a set up! Thanks for the tips!
Quote:
Originally Posted by krabearkub
As avonlea said, DON"T USE THE FLASH. If you use the flash you will get a black border around your card, where that shadow is on the background. When I photograph my cards, I usually have two lights set up- one hard light and one soft light. With one hard and one soft, I get depth to the photo, and you don't get competing shadows.

If you angle your card, just a little then it will add varying height to your picture, giving it visual interest. If my main image on the left of the card I will angle the right side of the card slightly further from the camera to give it the right angle.

My set up for photographing my cards is attached to the post. I have the continuous piece of paper, so that I don't have a seem in the background of my photo.
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Old 03-26-2007, 10:36 AM   #32
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Thumbs up Yay for Kurtis!

Kurtis will be posting some tips on his blog! Part one went up today.
Photo Tips - part one
Thanks, Kurtis!

.:Cris:.
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Old 03-28-2007, 09:04 AM   #33
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Part 2 is up: Photo Tips - part two - by Kurtis



And here's a snippet from his blog entry:
Quote:
Some key notes to keep in mind when photographing:
  • Avoid using your flash when possible
  • Be sure to zoom part way
  • Put the card at a slight angle
In my next entry, I will try to go more into the editing process.
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Old 03-28-2007, 01:30 PM   #34
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Quote:
Originally Posted by avonlea
I have a friend who's a talented photographer and her #1 tip; don't use the flash!!! So, I never use the flash. I try to use natural lighting, if possible. And I use the 'macro' setting on the camera; ie that lil' tulip setting. This is for when you're taking close up shots. And take lots of pics at various angles! Oh, and I use cardstock as my backdrop.
I agree with Avonlea, and it sound counterintuitive, but a professional photographer also told me to use the macro setting (the one that looks like a little flower on most cams) and zoom all the way OUT, then get close to your object and frame it in your viewfinder. Once I learned that trick aout zooming out instead of in, my pics started to look a LOT better!
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Old 03-29-2007, 05:43 PM   #35
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Hi! I have found that taking the photo in close up mode on the digital camera works best. It is easy and gives pretty good picture. Also, if there is any dimension on the card..I place it at a slight angle in order to capture some of that dimension on film!
Hope this helps!
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Old 04-02-2007, 12:05 PM   #36
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Part 3 (the last one) is up on Kurtis' blog! Here he talks about editing the photograph, "fixing the lighting levels and adding a watermark".
Photo Tips - part three
Thanks for taking the time to share your tips, Kurits!
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Old 05-17-2007, 07:10 AM   #37
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A huge thank you to everyone for sharing all their ideas and experiences. Your suggestion and Kurtis' blog finally allowed me to take a decent picture of my card.

My scanner has been giving me horrible results lately but I could not figure out how to take a good picture. I knew if I searched long enough I'd find a thread and here it is!!

I set up an area in my kitchen last night with a white towel (its still fairly new so thats why its still white), an overhead light source (microwave oven light) and then placed my desk lamp with a natural lightbulb in front of the card. I set my digital on the little flower and brought my camera in line with the card and took 5 pictures. ALL of them turned out, but the one that is posted in my gallery was centered the best and gave the best depth.

Again .... Thank You SOOOOOO much!!!
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Old 05-17-2007, 09:50 AM   #38
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How aabout if Kurtis joins the splitcoast team and does a series of tutorials on photos and scans. maybe #1 basic set up for photos #2 editing the photo #3 creative or "signature" backgrounds, #4 you get the idea
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Old 05-17-2007, 01:39 PM   #39
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I have a long-armed desk lamp that I have turned on, and arrange it to sit over top of my card. I use 12 x 12 paper for backdrop and tabletop. Angle the card slightly, and ensure your flash doesn't go off because it will wash out your photo. Good luck!
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Old 05-18-2007, 01:44 PM   #40
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This is one great thread! However, now that I turned the flash on on my camera, I can't figure out how to turn it OFF! I also figured out how to achieve macro because (dah) it actually has a little "flower" next to the button. Even with my flash on, my pictures are so much better. I go out onto my enclosed patio and put it on the table with either white or off white card on the table and as a backdrop. I'm never going to get my project done if I keep finding these great threads and then have to click on everyone's blogs. Kurtis you really are something. Thanks for blessing my day. Now if I could just figure out how to turn off the flash.
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