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I may have stumbled on the formula.

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by SaxonPig, Oct 28, 2012.

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  1. SaxonPig

    SaxonPig Member

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    Trying to photograph a couple rifles this afternoon. It's hard to shoot long guns (no pun intended) because the length can cause dark areas with no detail or "hot spots" with too much lighting. I think I have the formula worked out. All the photos sort of look the same but at least I can get the details on the guns and the lighting looks OK. May experiment with a different color backdrop, but otherwise this system works for me.

    PS: The only thing I did in PhotoShop was add the text and crop a bit of extra area around the subject. I didn't change anything or adjust color or brightness. These are right out of the camera (a Pentax 14MP SLR with a 70mm lens and a single on camera flash).


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  2. musicman10_1

    musicman10_1 Member

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    they look great. I really need to work on my photography skills.
     
  3. MistWolf

    MistWolf Member

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    Ya need a larger, softer light source
     
  4. RPRNY

    RPRNY Member

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    I'm still jealous of that Savage!
     
  5. creeper1956

    creeper1956 Member

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    Long guns are a PITA to shoot... but considering these are unaltered, you're very close to having it well sorted out. Good job!

    I'd bet that Martini is a sweetheart. ;)

    C
     
  6. 1KPerDay

    1KPerDay Member

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    Nice work! Get some oil on that garand stock. :)
     
  7. animator

    animator Member

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    The on-camera flash is ruining your shots. You really need a 2-light minimum setup diffused to make nice soft shadows. If any part of the rifle gets dark, either adjust the light positions or add another soft light.
     
  8. SaxonPig

    SaxonPig Member

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    Um... ruined? Really that bad?

    Well, thanks for the input.
     
  9. Sam1911

    Sam1911 Moderator

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    Not ruined, but yeah, the glare needs to go away to get that real pro edge. You're washing out some of the most beautiful spots.

    I think square-on, "flat" shots are going to be the most challenging to make really good. Getting a more quartering view will probably make the rifle "pop" and will cause a lot fewer direct flash reflections.
     
  10. rswartsell

    rswartsell Member

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    Nice work Saxon, I'm no expert but those seem to me to be pretty good photos. Anything can be improved, even Ansel Adams I suppose.
     
  11. animator

    animator Member

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    Compared to what you *could* be getting, yes, the flash is doing you the most harm.



    Go check out photography-on-the-net forum's gun thread. There's several good photos in all the pages of that thread, and you can learn a lot about how people are using lights to pull off professional shots that don't look quite so amateur.

    http://photography-on-the.net/forum/showthread.php?t=1011912
     
  12. JohnB

    JohnB Member

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    Google "One Light Firearm Photography"
     
  13. SaxonPig

    SaxonPig Member

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    Well, I thought I was getting decent results for not having professional lighting or a studio. At least they looked pretty good to me. Guess I was wrong.
     
  14. JohnB

    JohnB Member

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    I actually thought your results were pretty good.
     
  15. Jim Watson

    Jim Watson Member

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    They look pretty good to me.
    At least I can tell what they are, which you cannot say about all gunboard pictures.
    But really, now, Sax, blue sateen?
     
  16. jim243

    jim243 Member

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    No you are not wrong, nice highlights and detail. A peice of kleenex infront of your flash will soften the light.

    Jim
     
  17. GarySTL

    GarySTL Member

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    I recently bought two LED video lights to use for a similar purpose. I believe they have 60 LEDs each and have adjustable intensity. Soft light boxes lit by CFL bulbs are also not too expensive.

    That said I think your results are very nice.
     
  18. dubbleA

    dubbleA Member

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    You dont to have a studio for decent results, I sure dont. Personally use a table, a few incandesant lights, some difusers and different things for the background.

    These were just taken with cowhide for a background and some soft lights. No flash was used. Pictures were only cropped with text added.

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  19. The_Armed_Therapist

    The_Armed_Therapist Member

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    Saxon, that Savage makes my mouth water. LOL
     
  20. Captcurt

    Captcurt Member

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    Sax, I have sold several guns online and none of my pictures are half as good. Oh sure, you will always have some critisim, constructive and not, but I could use you to take my gun pix any day.
     
  21. orienteeer

    orienteeer Member

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    to saxon pig.......

    don't let the haters get you down. your photos look great.:)
     
  22. DammitBoy

    DammitBoy Member

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    Great pics and great guns as always Pig - I love seeing your stuff!
     
  23. BLB68

    BLB68 Member

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    There's no hate here, just people offering advice that's helpful.

    Cheap diffuser: Empty milk jugs, or cut outs of same. The semi-clear kind, of course.

    Edit: I like the looks of that Martini, is it a shooter?
     
  24. dubbleA

    dubbleA Member

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    Creative Lighting.......

    I am not a professional photogragher in no way shape or form. With that said I do try to take decent, tasteful, thought out pictures.

    Lighting and how to control light is a key factor. Like some others have already stated, using the flash from a camera is detrimental in taking these types of pictures. This is not "hate" in the words of some here but merely suggestions in taking better quality pictures.

    $50 worth of lights and some imagination resulted in taking the pictures below. Again, no flash was used. They are not great but I feel they are better than the average pic that you see in this and other forums.

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  25. SaxonPig

    SaxonPig Member

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    Those look fairly pro quality to me.

    I have tried every combo of lighting and background I could come up with. I used to do much better with film cameras... the digital system baffles me.

    These were taken with two strobes at 45 degrees bounced off the white ceiling and one on-camera flash with a thick diffuser. Still not right.


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