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Thread: Five glasses on a shelf

  1. #1

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    Five glasses on a shelf

    For those not interested in the details, just skip past the text to the image.

    When I posted my image of four glasses on a shelf, Dave Humphries asked if I had tried shooting five glasses. I had but it didn't work because the fifth glass was too large. While rummaging through my box looking for stuff to help take another shot of the same four glasses, I found a tiny fifth glass that I had forgotten about.

    This image is using a background made of very high quality (very expensive) black felt and it is SO much better for use with photography than the black foam core and gator board I had been using. For those like me who are fascinated about the importance of the differences between diffuse and direct reflections, it's absolutely amazing to see the differences between the two materials despite that both are very dark. When I projected a lamp equivalent in brightness to a 120 watt incandescent bulb onto the black board, the direct reflection was so bright that I had to put two diffusers over the bulb to cut back the brightness. The black felt is so diffuse (reflects so little light), that I had to use a 500 watt incandescent bulb.

    Another difference with this shot is that the light shining around the background toward the subject and camera has five 30 watt compact fluorescent bulbs rather than one and has an 18" reflector rather than a 12" reflector. This made for much better lighting of the base of the glasses.

    The other difference with this image is that I used a large white reflector on the right side of the glasses. The reflector threw just a small amount of light into parts of the interior of the glasses to help define the shape and add a little interest. Otherwise, those areas would have been pure black. Unlike the effects of the other changes, this change provides a subtle detail that you might not notice unless you carefully compare the two images.

    Finally, the image:


    Five glasses on a shelf
    Last edited by Mike Buckley; 25th December 2012 at 02:31 PM.

  2. #2
    Plumcrak's Avatar
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    Re: Five glasses on a shelf

    Mike, I really like the lighting on these...wonderful set-up! I think I like the four glasses over the five. Four seem to flow better in my eyes.
    Cheers and Merry Christmas/Happy Holidays!

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    Re: Five glasses on a shelf

    I like the lighting better on this one, although may be just a touch too much on the little glasses. The four glasses seem more calm, but I like the 5 also, just a little busier. What if you moved back a bit so that the reflection of the bottom of these glasses showed more, like the other picture. May have play around with my glasses. Maybe after the holidays when they are all clean again, although I have broken 4 this week maybe there won't be any left

  4. #4

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    Re: Five glasses on a shelf

    Thanks for your detailed ideas, Connie.

    Quote Originally Posted by CLK View Post
    I like the lighting better on this one, although may be just a touch too much on the little glasses.
    I agree. There are so many variables that could be causing that. I'm new enough at this that I would have to make changes by trial-and-error to determine how to control that.

    What if you moved back a bit so that the reflection of the bottom of these glasses showed more, like the other picture.
    From my perspective, there is actually a little bit more of the reflection showing in this one than in the other one. The brighter lighting also makes the reflection more apparent. Even so, I tried including more of the reflection in this one but didn't like it because doing so introduced more shapes that made that area of the image too busy.

    although I have broken 4 this week maybe there won't be any left
    I know that feeling well. I wonder if you saw my photo of two broken wine glasses or my photo of one broken wine glass.

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    Re: Five glasses on a shelf

    Mike, they are both beautiful, exquisite images, but this one does not have the noise Dave mentioned. I have a slight preference for this one because of the lack of noise. Either way, both great images.

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    Re: Five glasses on a shelf

    Thanks for stopping by again, Jon.

    Quote Originally Posted by plumcrak View Post
    I think I like the four glasses over the five.
    I like the simplicity of the four glasses enough that I'm going to eventually photograph them using the improved lighting scheme that is applied in the image with five glasses. Though as Connie mentioned, I'm going to attempt to deal with the overly strong brightness of the tiny glass.

  7. #7

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    Re: Five glasses on a shelf

    Thanks, Sergio!

    I agree that the background lighting in this image is so much better. As mentioned in my previous post, I'll photograph the four wine glasses again using this lighting. The problematic stuff that you and Dave noticed in that area of the other image isn't noise, but it is distracting. That problem seems to be solved using a background made of black felt instead of black foam core or gator board.

  8. #8
    Coinneachmhor's Avatar
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    Re: Five glasses on a shelf

    The lighting and the lines picked out through this are exquisite. i too slightly prefer this one - you really are cracking this topic Mike!

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    Re: Five glasses on a shelf

    Hi Mike,

    I prefer this one for the better lighting and background.

    I believe I said "3 or 5", if 5 is too many, why not try three

    The other thing I wondered about was whether the glasses should be posed as you might organise a group of people; with the smallest at the front?
    Even if you don't have them one in front of another due to the complexity of shapes this would create - afterall, people are not transparent

    Cheers,

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    Re: Five glasses on a shelf

    Very pretty glasses Mike, it is touchy to get the reflexions just right. Now a few Posts over there you will find some good wine for thoses glasses, it would be nice if Donald filled them with "Chateau neuf du Pape". A nice amber glow for the season. HEHE! Merry-Merry-Chritmas to all!

  11. #11

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    Re: Five glasses on a shelf

    Dave,

    Interesting thoughts about arranging them as if they were people with small glasses in the front. I tried several arrangements including some with the small glasses in the front, but not with the clever idea of thinking of them as people. I'll remember to think about that in the future. For whatever reason (that I don't remember), I liked this arrangement best.

    You did indeed suggest three or five glasses. I'm in the mood for trying as many as possible, so for the time being I'm going with at least four.

    Louise,

    I would love to share Chateauneuf with Donald. Merry Christmas to you, too!

  12. #12

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    Re: Five glasses on a shelf

    If I hadn't learned about the family of angles from Light: Science and Magic, I would think someone was joking if they told me this image was made with white poster board instead of black velvet in the background. However, that's how this one was made.

    The light at the bottom of the background is the same spotlight and reflector used in the first image. This time the lamp is turned off and is moved closer to the background, making use only of the reflector. The large reflector on the right is positioned a little differently than in the first image. Everything else is the same as in the first image.

    I prefer this image, mostly because the lighting of the two small glasses that Connie and I objected to in the first one is so much nicer in this one. There is also an overall balance between the light tones and the dark tones that is more elegant for me in this one. Your thoughts?


    Five glasses on a shelf
    Last edited by Mike Buckley; 25th December 2012 at 07:37 PM.

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    Moderator Donald's Avatar
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    Re: Five glasses on a shelf

    I do prefer the arrangement and the lighting in this one over the 'Four glasses ...' image. As Kenny has written, you're really getting to grips with this subject.

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    Re: Five glasses on a shelf

    Well darn, I could have had a whole album of pictures if I had been thinking instead of swearing over my broken glasses. I don't have any fancy lighting, but as soon as the holiday is over I am going to start experimenting with what I have. It isn't due to stop raining here until July 5th so I have plenty of indoor time to learn.

  15. #15

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    Re: Five glasses on a shelf

    Connie,

    I have actually had to explain to friends that I didn't break the wine glasses so I could make those other photos. I do take it as a compliment that they think I'll do whatever is necessary to make an image, though Donald and I know there's a limit when it comes to perfectly good wine glasses.

  16. #16

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    Re: Five glasses on a shelf

    Yikes! I didn't even see Kenny's nice comment until Donald mentioned it. Thank you, Kenny!

    Thanks also to you, Donald!

  17. #17
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    Re: Five glasses on a shelf

    Great photos. I prefer the second set against the "white" background. One thing that bothers me is that they are empty. Had you finished or about to start?

  18. #18

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    Re: Five glasses on a shelf

    Quote Originally Posted by Mito View Post
    Had you finished or about to start?
    I'll never tell.

  19. #19
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    Re: Five glasses on a shelf

    Let's bounce some lasers through the glass, wouldn't suggest using bullets. Both four and five glasses work for me. I hope this is just the beginning of this exercise for you. Looking forward to seeing more.

  20. #20

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    Re: Five glasses on a shelf

    They look great. I wish I could see more of the reflexion on the table.

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