Taking pictures of amps - best lighting?

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Taking pictures of amps - best lighting?

Postby Shock And Awe on Sat Oct 08, 2005 6:40 pm

How do you fellas take your pictures? ie lighting, flash no flash (an interesting thing that i learned using the flash is.. dont get too close :) haha)
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Re: Taking pictures of amps - best lighting?

Postby AC50 on Sat Oct 08, 2005 7:11 pm

Shock And Awe wrote:How do you fellas take your pictures? ie lighting, flash no flash (an interesting thing that i learned using the flash is.. dont get too close :) haha)


I'm an amateur photographer. But it seems to me that unless you have professional studio grade flash equipment, like the ones on stands with power packs and reflective umbrellas (these rigs cost thousands), you're better off without flash. Flash just washes the soul out of any picture, not to mention the obvious bright spots, whiteouts, etc.

Experiment with using available light. Indirect sunlight, coming into your house at various times of the day, or outside in a shaded spot. At night, turn on the room's overhead light and experiment with the placement of lamps and the direction/redirection of light to create the effect you want.

I'd expect Elliot Meldoy to enter this thread directly. :wink:

Here are a few pics I took with my Kodak DX6490 digital camera, using available light.


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Postby silverfacechamp on Sat Oct 08, 2005 8:00 pm

Nice setup you got there....What year is that Starfire?
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Postby AC50 on Sat Oct 08, 2005 8:25 pm

silverfacechamp wrote:Nice setup you got there....What year is that Starfire?


Thank you! That's a 1967 Starfire VI.
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Postby silverfacechamp on Sat Oct 08, 2005 8:34 pm

Very nice. I've always been partial to those old Guilds. I've always meant to find one, but being the tight bastard I am I haven't located one for the right price.........yet. :wink:
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Postby VikingOne on Sat Oct 08, 2005 8:57 pm

I played a guys bluesbird once. Now that was a nice guitar. Wouldn't mind finding one for the right price.
"It's a fine line between clever and stupid"
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Postby Elliot Meldoy on Sat Oct 08, 2005 9:10 pm

AC you are getting pretty awesome with that camera brutha!! :)

the very best light is natural sunlight, but since we can't always have that the next best thing is a home made soft box http://www.morguefile.com/archive/classroom.php?lesson=7 I made one last night, it cost about $15.00 for the foam display board. those dimensions will yield a large box so you might want to make a few test subjects using just card board untill you find the right size for you.

here is the difference a soft box makes
http://www.morguefile.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=2120

you'll need a covering such as a white sheet to cover the font and diffuse the light.
hang the box over your amp chassis, or move the box around untill you get the best results.

good luck.
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Postby silverfacechamp on Sat Oct 08, 2005 9:11 pm

'Birds are nice. I used to play with a guy that had a '78 that he'd had since. One of the nicest flame tops I've seen. Nice unit, for sure.
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Postby AC50 on Sat Oct 08, 2005 9:31 pm

VikingOne wrote:I played a guys bluesbird once. Now that was a nice guitar. Wouldn't mind finding one for the right price.


I used to have one of those, from the '50's, with the white soapbar pickups, similar to this.

http://www.beatwater.com/GUILD%20'54%20 ... esbird.JPG

It was a nice guitar, but I seem to remember it feeling very fragile. At the time, I could only afford one guitar, and it was down to that or my Strat. The Guild had to go, sad to say.

silverfacechamp wrote:Very nice. I've always been partial to those old Guilds. I've always meant to find one, but being the tight mamby-pamby I am I haven't located one for the right price.........yet. :wink:


I was fortunate. That was one of my father's guitars, which he gave to me as a gift a couple of years before his passing. There's some huge sentimental value attached to that one.


Elliot Meldoy wrote:AC you are getting pretty awesome with that camera brutha!! :)


Aww, shucks, Br'er Elliot . . . 't'warn't nuthin'. But thanks! :wink:
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Postby AC50 on Sat Oct 08, 2005 10:06 pm

Goofy Bluesbird link, above, fixed. :oops: :roll:
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Postby Shock And Awe on Sat Oct 08, 2005 10:17 pm

haha you guys will turn anything into a gear fest :)

what about pictures of the chasis/circuit.. I just have a regular cheap digital camera at my disposal

how do you guys get those CLEAR chasis shots?
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Postby AC50 on Sat Oct 08, 2005 11:39 pm

Shock And Awe wrote:haha you guys will turn anything into a gear fest :)


Sorry, the thread is about "Taking Pictures of Ants - Best Lighting", isn't it?
Sorry 'bout that!

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Disclaimer: This model, though under the age of 18 and photographed against his will, was not hurt in the process (but rather rescued from the bathroom drain, photographed, and set free in The Great Outdoors).
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Postby StevenEsqThree on Sun Oct 09, 2005 5:25 am

I do glamour photography on weekends during spring and summer. If you are not offended by some playboy style nudity, you can see some of my work here: http://member.onemodelplace.com/photographer_list.cfm?P_ID=30099

I was actually planning to do a special "photo shoot" for my amp collection in the next couple of weeks when our location shooting schedule eases up. I'll be using full studio lighting, metered exposures, the works. I'm thinking it will take an entire day to do it right (multiple set ups, different angles, etc.)

Going through school, I also did some industrial product photography (usually machines with pretty girls in bikinis) so I'm hoping I can remember some of those techiniques.

My general tips for good photos: (1) find a good place to get depth between your subject and the background. You want your subject in focus and the background soft. To do this, you also need to use as large an aperature as possible (lowest Fstop).

(2) avoid white walls as background. A famous cinematographer once said, "I can light anything with a can of black paint." Translation: keep subjects high key light and backgrounds low key light. Staying away from walls also prevents cheesy shadows.

(3) Soft boxes are great for girls (and probably guitars which actually have feminine lines) but I'm not sure that goes for amps. I'll try it and see what happens (I've always used soft boxes for glamour stuff, so I'll probably stick with it for amps/guitars)

(4) If shooting out doors, wait for a few hours before sunset. That's the best color and quality of light (more amber).

(By the way, ignore my Avatar. That's a quick snap shot with a digital camera that I grabbed one day before getting to work. I didn't have time to get any real lighting going.)
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