Photographing Your Work - A Tutorial

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For many woodturners photography quickly becomes yet another tool of the craft. We spend hours creating works of beauty so we naturally want to showcase our work at its best. Acceptance to exhibitions or juried events often requires us to be somewhat proficient in photography. For those of us who share our work on the net, images are our primary means of communication. Yet photography can be daunting to those who are new to the subject.

It shouldn't be. Expensive equipment and a Ph.D in optics aren't necessary for taking a good photo. Take a look at the image at the bottom of this page. It was shot with a basic 3.2 megapixel Canon PowerShot A75. The truth is that most cameras on the market today are more than capable of delivering a beautiful image. The limiting factor is often the person behind the lens.

This tutorial is intended for the woodturner and casual photographer whose primary interest is in taking better photos of his or her woodturnings. It assumes the reader has a basic point-and-shoot camera (or better) and will be shooting primarily in "auto" or "macro" mode. It does not attempt to cover technical photographic concepts such as shutter speed, ISO, aperture, etc. Rather, it is a compilation of simple tips and tricks for assisting fellow woodturners in improving their photos.

The tutorial is divided into three sections:

   Section One covers ten simple tips for getting the most out of your images with presentation and shooting techniques.
   Section Two discusses a few basic photo editing software tips.
   Section Three sheds some light on the world of lighting.

For many woodturners, sections one and two may be enough to satisfy their needs. Section three is provided for those who want to take their skills to the next level.

A Final Thoughts page provides a few additional resources for those who want more information on the topic.

It is suggested that each of these sections be read in order as each builds upon the other.

Click on the navigation links at the top or bottom of each page to move through the tutorial.

Texas Ebony semi-open form. 4-1/2" x 1-3/4".

Image taken with a 3.2MP Canon Powershot A75

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