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How to photograph your work for sale reproduction?


Many artists nowadays create works in digital art technology, receiving ready-made graphic files to be uploaded to a sales platform or put into print. If you are not one of them and you create works by hand in any technique, using a physical medium such as canvas, cardboard or paper, sooner or later you will have to photograph your works for reproduction and sale. How to digitize your work with a camera? You will learn from this article.


Camera and tripod


Today's digital cameras have high-quality image sensors and high resolutions that will 100% satisfy the need for copies. You don't need a digital SLR camera, it can be a simpler portable digital device. As long as it is at least a mid-range device, no older than two years, don't particularly worry about details such as megapixels, lens light or sensor sensitivity. From 12Mpx onwards, the quality of the images should be sufficient. Place them rigidly on a tripod so that you can control distance, tilt and angle.



Make sure your work is well lit, but don't overdo it. It is better to take a picture during the day in natural light, with sunlight. Artificial lighting can have a variety of colors, cause underexposure or give excess light, and disturb the color of the photo. Try to avoid lighting the work with special lamps, especially those that do not scatter light and can cause flashes visible on canvas. However, if you have access to such lighting, set two lamps with a diffuser that scatters white light at an identical angle to the work. If you do not have such equipment, do not worry. Don't look for perfect lighting - the light, white balance and contrast can be manipulated later, on the finished photo in the graphics program.


Angle and frame


I assume that you will place the camera on a tripod. If the work is against a wall or anything else, check what angle it is set up. Try to tilt the camera similarly, so that you can shoot in a straight line. Maintaining the proportions of the work is important to get the original shape of your work. Keep a small distance above the work and under the lower edge of the work, but try to keep it as large as possible in the frame.


Zoom and ISO


Turn off the digital zoom and adjust the distance of the camera to get closer to work without using the digital zoom. You can use optical zoom. Try not to use predefined settings and select ISO100 to take this photo.


File format and color space


If available, choose a lossless compression format or uncompressed format such as RAW. Another good choice is TIFF. Eventually, you can also opt for a high-quality photo in JPG format. If you have a slightly better camera and can choose a different color palette than sRGB, choose Adobe RGB or ProPhoto RGB.


Camera settings and background


Your role is to render the natural color scheme in accordance with the original. Unfortunately, digital cameras have a variety of color pickups and amplifiers that can increase white saturation (white balance) or prefer one of the colors, such as blue or green, giving white a different hue. It is good practice to photograph with a white background, e.g. on a white wall. Make sure that no other objects are in the field of view, especially in the background of the work should be uniform in color. A white wall or cardboard on the back guarantees that you can be sure of the camera settings and deviations from the actual white. After uploading the pictures to the computer you will still see the color details and then you may have to use other camera settings. Initially use the photo modes without flash, in daylight mode and without additions.


Uploading a file to a computer


Digital photography aims to reproduce the image for use on a computer. Download the photos during the photo session. Take a look at the color reproduction, especially the vivid colors such as red, blue, green. Check the level of light saturation, if the work is not too light or too dark. These indicators can still be manipulated in editing, but the closer you get to real-life reproduction, the more confident you will not lose the look of the original. If necessary, choose the options to adjust the colors, e.g. color balance, color collection, temperature. Look for the perfect reproduction. Important! Devices have different screens, so it is good to check how the photos look like on your computer, tablet and smartphone. You can customize your screen settings on this page: Cut out the picture so that there is no background left. Aligned edges will show whether you have evenly adjusted the work and not sweat.

Congratulations. This is the end of the article and we hope that you will soon organize your first photo shoot for your own works of art. Remember that for the purpose of uploading works of artwork to the Artplanet service the ideal file parameters are: JPG, RGB color space, 300 DPI resolution, screen resolution more than 2900px, up to 50mb file size. 

Photo by Visually Us from Pexels