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General Photography DiscussionLighting Technique Question

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Steven G Webb
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Lighting Technique Question

Postby Steven G Webb » Sat Jan 23, 2016 5:14 am

I've got this opportunity to photograph a large inventory of coins for a dealer/collector. First step, the lens is out of the way. Now comes the lighting. I've got a reasonable grasp on reflections and that things reflect, everything. I saw a technique I'm interested in specifically. Here's the rundown on the setup:

The subject material is placed on a flat level surface. The primary light source is positioned directly in front, behind, level and marginally higher than the subject. A clear sheet of glass is positioned on the camera side of the subject and at a 45 degree angle. The camera is positioned directly over the subject and lens straight down. The photo is shot through the glass. The light hits the glass and a good portion of it passes through, however a good bit of it is reflected down evenly illuminating the subject. This method has to be done in a dark room to prevent ghost reflections from appearing in the glass. Also, the glass' angle is altered to create more directional light. I suppose this is like a beam splitter and I've seen the technique used in portable teleprompters. Anyone used this technique? Are there any advantages or disadvantages over direct diffused lighting?
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