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Old 03-11-2012, 09:26 AM   #1 (permalink)
toyotaman's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: NW Georgia (USA)
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Default Needing "Photo" Skills

1st, I do not yet have a photo tent. My camera is a Cannon Powershot A590 IS( Image stabilizer).(No Tripod yet) Can i take fairly good photos with this camera? If so can someone tell me what I need to build a photo tent and how to use my camera for good photos? I have a few pens waiting for pictures but when I take it now they are dark and do not show up at all.(No colors of the pen). I know I lack alot of experience and I'm willing to learn with a little help. Thanks for any and all advise.
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Old 03-11-2012, 10:01 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Sequim, WA, USA.
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Most cameras will do the job. A light tent is nice but you can get good pictures without one, you can also get good pictures without a tripod if you have enough light.
Try taking your pictures next to a window or outside, natural light works well.
Experiment, remember your film is free. Get some pics and post one and ask for opinions.
Search for light tents in the search function, there is a lot of good info there.
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Old 03-11-2012, 07:10 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Location: Feeding Hills MA
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$5 at Walmart will buy you a couple of yards of translucent white fabric that can make a nice simple tent for you. Better yet, I would use small pvc pipe and corners with it to make a few panels that you can use as needed. Sometimes a tent is a bit too flat for interesting photos. A couple of clamp/silver dish lights with do a great job if you need lights (i.e. can't just set it up outside or in a bright room...) and cameras tripod sockets are standard 1/4-20 threads, so you can make a platform for your camera with scraps from around your shop usually also. If you get creative you can even set up a bold on a clamp or something so you can adjust it...
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Old 03-27-2012, 12:32 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Location: Lebanon Indiana
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If your pictures are dark you need to figure out the exposure and white balance settings on your camera first and foremost. Once you start getting good illumination, then a photo tent can help you control the light to get more balanced lighting all around you subject and reduce glare or bright spots. But work on getting to know your camera first.

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Old 03-28-2012, 06:24 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Cabot, Arkansas USA
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I started with a tent made from a cardboard box and some thin white sheets. Cut and tape, add some lamps next to it, and played with the light bulbs to get what I needed. Finely had the chance to get one of those 'discount/everything needed tents' and made a frame from PVC to hold the lamps where they were needed.

Don't forget the all important sun photo's with a white towel on the patio table! Other then the tree reflections in the hardware(on the kit), I had a few that were looking pretty good out there....

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Old 03-28-2012, 08:07 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Location: Wichita Falls, TX, USA.
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There is an excellent article in the library...maybe several...that should be quite helpful. There are also many good threads in the pen photography forum. They range from simple setups to the other end of the spectrum.

As far as your camera: yes you can. I started with digital cameras using the sony Mavica which used 3 1/2 inch floppy disks and had a relatively low pixel count compared to todays pixel count.

The good thing about digital is immediate feedback. Evaluate the image, erase and try again. Learn to use white balance correctly, use bulbs balanced for daylight, higher f-stop and then the proper shutter speed. In my opinion, a tripod is a very useful tool to keep the camera steady.

Many compact flourescent bulbs now have the actual color temperature of the bulb on the package or on the bulb itself. Don't be fooled with the words "daylight" used in describing the bulbs. Check the actual color temp of the bulb.

Search the internet for "table top photography" and you will get more info than you could ever read but quite useful. There are some excellent pages that give very useful information.

Do a good turn daily!
Don Ward aka its_virgil
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