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How to photograph artwork


Do you want to photograph your own artwork and you don´t know how to work it out? Exactly for you there are few basic tips how to achieve a quality photograph of your painting or other artwork. The essential issue is a suitable lighting setup and a camera with correct settings, or today, even a high-end smartphone.

1. How to do it - well, art reproduction photography is an expert field of its own. We are dealing here with a - let´s say - home-made way, not an expert kind of reproduction. We count with certain limits in the final outcome.

2. Lighting - it is necessary that light falling on a painting is diffused, that means evenly distributed. If you do not own quality studio lighting, you can shoot a painting outside. Lighting should be completely even, so we recommend shooting on a place behind a building with diffused day light - that means in a shade, not a direct sunshine. You should place a white flat sheet underneath the object to reflect the light coming from above. Especially oil paintings usually produce reflection of light source from glossy surface of the painting, which complicates getting a picture. This brings us to another point, which is direction of light.

3. Direction of light - especially when shooting with artificial lights, you should place the source of light so as to avoid reflection of light back to the camera. You should not shoot outside in a direct sunshine, but rather in a shade. A partly cloudy day with diffused light is more suitable.

4. Camera settings - put the camera on a tripod or other steady surface, turn off flash, set ISO 100, use white balance approx. 5000K, set the RAW format for possible further editing in Photoshop. For shooting with a quality smartphone camera you can basically apply the same rules, only you do not set ISO and white balance.

5. Editing - while shooting, it is not necessary to zoom to the object too much. You can crop the undesirable frame while later editing. If you wish to attain maximum definition, you can take a snapshot in parts that can be merged in an editor later.

6. Final advice - in case of doubts, or would you appreciate our help with shooting or editing your artwork photographs, please do not hesitate to contact us on: editace@online-gallery.shop