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Thread: Photographing quilts

  1. #1
    BlueChicken's Avatar
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    So often when we take pictures and then post them, we end up commenting "the colours are not as bright".

    Does anyone have any tips on how to take good photos?

    I have a decent digital camera that does almost everything automatically, but still I get shots where the colours are dull and not accurate, or it's all out of focus.

  2. #2
    Super Member beachlady's Avatar
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    When you find out, let me know!!! I have been thinking of taking a class at adult ed on photography.

  3. #3
    BlueChicken's Avatar
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    I seem to manage photographing single blocks ok, using the little flower setting on the camera. The colours in those are always accurate and clear.

    It's doing the whole quilt that doesn't work well. The magazines always make it look easy!


  4. #4
    Super Member Moonpi's Avatar
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    Those magazine photographers use filters and lenses to keep colors true. Any photo editing software worth its price will correct fading.

    Another thing to keep in mind is that how it looks on YOUR monitor may not be how it looks on others'.

  5. #5
    BlueChicken's Avatar
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    ohhhh.... never thought of that. I have photoshop, might have to go and have a wee play.


  6. #6
    Super Member JoanneS's Avatar
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    I don't know if this makes a difference, but my DH says to ALWAYS use the flash, even with a digital camera that decides for itself.

  7. #7
    BlueChicken's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Loretta
    I just never seem to know where to hang a quilt to photograph it. Can't wait until summer- I will photograph them outdoors. They always look better outdoors.
    That gives me an idea.... I can hang them on the clothesline to take photos.

  8. #8
    Member Courtepointe's Avatar
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    I think it would look nice to have all the quilts I've made hanging on the clothesline, gently moving in the breeze on a sunny day.

  9. #9
    Super Member JoanneS's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Courtepointe
    I think it would look nice to have all the quilts I've made hanging on the clothesline, gently moving in the breeze on a sunny day.
    That reminds me of the time I bought a BOX of used ties (I think it was from a Boys & Girls Club Fundraiser) and washed them in the machine - figuring if they fell apart, I didn't want to use them anyway. However, I wasn't brave enough to put them in the dryer, so I hung them on the clothesline. My DH took a picture. If I find it, I'll post it. It really was funny. I took the facings out and used some of them for foundation piecing the year my GD asked for a red robe for Christmas. I decorated it with tie (not Thai) silk blocks of burgundy and gold.

    I really got off the phot subject, didn't I!

    I often hang quilts on the clothes line to photograph them. If they're heavy, th photo is a bit wobbly!

  10. #10
    Super Member beachlady's Avatar
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    I love hanging them on the clothes line, except on the ocean here, we usually have a breeze, so you have to catch them on the down low.

  11. #11
    Cookn's Avatar
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    If you are going to photograph and print from a digital camera, there are several things that you can do. The first is one that most people won't do because it's a pain in the tail. To get completely accurate color your "Photography System" has to be color matched from beginning to end. It's a complex range of adjustments on everything from the camera to the monitor and the printer, making sure that every device is seeing the same colors. It takes seemingly forever to get it just right and then it must be checked monthly. There are devices sold that include software and hardware to help you balance your system ranging from a few hundred dollars to several thousand dollars. Most people won't go to the trouble to do it.

    A couple of tips that will help color:

    Most imaging software includes white balancing, which gives you a point to get to a true white for the light in the photograph. Most soft ware has a sampling setting that you can point at different areas of the image. On something that is color critical, I always make sure that there is something that I know is white in the image. I can then sample it with the software and the software will balance all the colors to the white. DIfferent lighting will make colors appear differently but white is always white so if you balance for the white it makes all the colors correct for that image. Even if the camera does it automatically you still need to do it in the computer, because the computer sees the image differently than the camera did.

    If you want the most even and saturated color in your image and you are going to take the picture outdoors wait for an overcast day. The overcast lighting is very even and closer to correct color temperature than anything taken on a bright sunlit day. Light during the day changes color. It becomes warmer or leans to reds and oranges, early and late in the day, while midday light is bluer and harsher.

  12. #12
    BlueChicken's Avatar
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    That's awesome, thanks heaps!

    I think the trick with having something white in the shot will work well, nice and easy to do.

    :-)

  13. #13
    Izy
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    Blue chicken, I find I get truer colours by placing blocks etc., on a white sheet :D

    Plus for good closeups, check your camera for whats called macro and supermacro settings, it is specifically for close ups.

    Also my camera has a setting for 'flowers' this gives a lovely bright hue to colours :D

    You just need to play with your camera gal!! :lol: :lol: :lol:

  14. #14
    BlueChicken's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Izy
    You just need to play with your camera gal!! :lol: :lol: :lol:
    Blimmen camera is smarter than me I reckon! LOL How sad is that!


  15. #15
    Izy
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    Quote Originally Posted by BlueChicken
    Quote Originally Posted by Izy
    You just need to play with your camera gal!! :lol: :lol: :lol:
    Blimmen camera is smarter than me I reckon! LOL How sad is that!
    Have you checked for any on-line help & info, just put the make and model of your camera in search and see what comes up :wink:

  16. #16
    Power Poster sandpat's Avatar
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    Yes Blue...my camera is smarter than I am also. I did find that mine has several types of "scenery" settings. I mess up frequently because that setting seems to give me the best results when I photograph quilts. But...I didn't realize for awhile that it has other settings within the "scenery" setting...like indoor, snow, floral, underwater...etc. I experiment with mine to find just the right one for that particular quilt and daylight.

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