Photographing my painting help

Lighting and camera tips are appreciated.  I have taken many photos of this and they are all very different.  Should I use a real camera instead of my phone? They are supposed to be great cameras. Some look grainy, some muted etc also color accuracy is slightly off


  • @critterisfun
    Let's start with what camera you are using. The whole scene is distorted. This is lens distortion. I'm guessing it's a phone shot. There are tools to fix this in photoshop and affinity. 
    I roughly eliminated the distortion in photoshop. A better camera will solve this and focus. Mark has several videos on photographing you paintings.
    Lighting is almost ok but…

    Nice painting by the way.

  • @critterisfun, it's a lovely painting.

    Mark advises taking the painting outside and photographing it in sunlight. I do this now and it works - I get better photos. You can also do a lot post exposure like denoise and crop which will present your painting to its best advantage. I did a bit in Affinity Photo for you.

  • If you are by yourself, try wedging the painting into a shaded window frame outside, on a bright day or during good lighting, but not in direct sunlight.  You'll get a reasonable photo, and then just crop in on your computer to lose any window/frme.  Works okay.
  • @critterisfun there is a technical solution to this that works flawlessly. It requires some kit, but the results are close to magical. There is a good discussion of it in this thread
  • Here is something that may help those who use Photoshop.  I've used it for years.

    Removing Keystoning and Perspective Distortions in Photoshop

    Removing keystoning from a photographed rectangular work is not difficult in Photoshop. Use the Crop tool to get within a quarter inch of your painting, (but not too close). With the NAVIGATOR, ZOOM IN to at least 100%, or much more. Now SELECT/SELECT ALL. Go to EDIT/TRANSFORM/DISTORT. You will find in the corners, 4 small box buttons. Drag each of these out one at a time until you get each corner of your painting pulled tight to the corners of the image file frame. Press ENTER or RETURN (Mac), to accept these changes. Any perspective distortion present in the original image will be corrected now.

    To get the proportions or aspect ratio of your painting back on track, take measurements of your original painting, go to IMAGE/IMAGE SIZE, disable the CONSTRAIN PROPORTIONS checkbox, so you can alter them. Now type into the height and width dimension boxes, the actual measurements of your painting. Since this may increase your file size to something overwhelming, you can reduce the pixels per inch to something much smaller than 300dpi to something like 96 dpi, or 72 dpi. Press OK, and your painting will be flat, square, true proportioned, and looking good! Remember to go back and reset the CONSTRAIN PROPORTIONS checkbox in IMAGE SIZE, for the next time you use that function

  • edited August 31
    Thank you all very much for your good advice! However, I am not an artist but a photographer. But your advice helped me a lot.
    Next week I have to photograph a new exhibition of contemporary art. It's good that this time there are no problems with the location. And then it usually takes a couple of days of preparation for filming for this. Although with the service, everything is getting much faster.
    Maybe it will be useful to you, and you will find your inspiration.
    And the picture is really wonderful! A charming chamber portrait.

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