Photographing Paintings

I am currently photographing some new paintings. It’s a slow careful process to get the exact colour and every detail of a painting right, but it’s worth it when your work is represented to its fullest truth.. After all it took weeks and months of dedication to create a meaningful piece or art in the first place..

Check back here to see my new work which will be posted in the coming days.

Published by Derval Freeman

Graduate of Limerick School of Art and Design 1996 Fine art painter and photographer

4 thoughts on “Photographing Paintings

  1. I have so much trouble taking pictures of my work, because the work always looks so much better as a painting, not a photo. do you have any tips? thanks ๐Ÿ™‚


    1. Hi Kimberly, I agree with you whole heartedly. All art should be seen in the flesh more than in photos and the Internet etc. the experience is so much more significant when a painting or sculpture etc. is in front of you where you can touch it (if allowed!) smell it and share a space with it.. Unfortunately with the little opportunities a lot of galleries give lesser known artists, I think taking a good photo of a painting and posting on your website and other great social media is the next best thing.

      My advice to you is how I photograph my own work and it works for mine in particular. It may not work for certain types of art. It includes the following:
      Use a good DSLR camera, (mine is Nikon D800 but you could use a less expensive one).
      Keep the light very limited where there is no light cast on the surface of the work (especially with textured or reflective glossy surfaces). I find that indoors with natural day light works best for me.
      Most importantly use a tripod.
      Keep your ISO low, aperture at a minimum of F8 and depending on the light adjust your shutter speed accordingly, (I find that under exposing works best for my work). Your lens should be no less than 50mm, I use 70mm most of the time as this will lessen distortion of your work.
      Place the camera in the centre of the work and tilt the camera if your work is at a slight angle ie. if the painting is tilted up slightly then the camera should be tilted down where the angle of both are the same.
      One last thing, put your camera on a timer so there is no shake from your fingers pressing down on the release button.
      I hope this helps Kimberly and that I haven’t confused you. It’s not easy at first and it took me a long time and many mistakes to finally get it right. I’m lucky that I am a photographer too. My advise if you can’t get it yourself it’s worth investing in a good photographer who specialises in it somewhat. See how you get on and if you have any more questions I’d be happy to advise if I can. ๐Ÿ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

      1. wow, thank you so much! this is extremely helpful. my main problem is lack of space as well. every apartment i have stayed in, is covered in tack holes when i leave ๐Ÿ™‚ i do fill the holes before i leave! we don’t get very good lighting where i am now, so perhaps i will wait until the snow melts and take the paintings outdoors in the shade? i have read and researched about this as well, and have experimented. some photos come out better than others. i guess practice, practice, practice! thanks again for the kind help. i will be performing another photo shoot, probably in a month when i can see the grass outside ๐Ÿ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

  2. No problem, glad to help. Your right about outdoors and in the shade is good too, just watch out for color cast from anything reflecting back onto your work where your photographing it. Its best on a cloudy grey day as sunlight, even in the shade, can cause a color bounce (i.e. sometimes the blue sky influences whites or its brightness can drain color from a painting). But yeah, practice and keep trying, you’ll get the results I’m sure. Best of luck! ๐Ÿ™‚


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