Numismatic and History Discussions > Coin Photography, Conservation and Storage

Photographing gold

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Andrew McCabe:
I've been rather dissatisfied with my record in photographing gold coins: the results usually appear different each time as it seems my camera(s) had some difficulty managing such an intensity of metallic and reflective yellow-red colours. In order to at least align my gold coins - which all, in the hand, look as if they are made of the same sort of gold - I did some reshoots. A few samples below:





NB these coins vary hugely in size, from about 1 gram (20 As) to about 8 grams (the two aurei)

I'm much more satisfied with these than with prior efforts on the same coins, but I wonder whether others have experienced problems shooting gold (which is a rarely mentioned metal on these boards)?

4to2CentBCphilia:
Have you tried using a polarizing filter on your lens. I find it can remove some of the reflection off the gold.

Also, (don't know if you do this,), but you can go into a program like Microsoft Live Photo Gallery and under fine tuning you can adjust highlights and shadows (in the adjust exposure category)

It is great for compensating beyond just brightness and contrast.

Having said all that, these are really good photos, and great coins.

BR

Mark

BTW I once owned this piece and despite hundreds of photos, I could never replicate the dealer photo below.

Andrew McCabe:

--- Quote from: 4to2CentBC on August 15, 2012, 12:28:06 pm ---Have you tried using a polarizing filter on your lens. I find it can remove some of the reflection off the gold.

Also, (don't know if you do this,), but you can go into a program like Microsoft Live Photo Gallery and under fine tuning you can adjust highlights and shadows (in the adjust exposure category)

--- End quote ---

Thanks for the advice. I'll try get a polarising filter.

I use a relatively simple photo editor but it does include adjustment of exposure, colour saturation, individual colours, brightness, contrast, and many other tools. From my experience taking thousands of coin photos, it is often more effective just to take a half-dozen photos under different lighting conditions and lighting angles (which can be done in less than a minute) and choose the best, rather than spending 15 minutes trying to optimise conditions for 1 picture.

Lovely solidus. I would bet from the photo that the dealer has an automated set-up such as a Danner apparatus (which do not come cheap). As mentioned frequently on-list, I am a volume rather than a quality photographer, often shooting hundreds of coins in a day, so don't have the time to optimise per-coin. These goldies however have persistently caused me difficulty.

Andrew McCabe:
I have to admit I'm particularly happy with the photo of the Mars/Eagle 60 as denomination. This is about the tenth photo of this coin I've taken but is the first that looks really like the coin. I show below the fold the photo this replaced (which was already the best of many worse efforts), beside the new.

Top: old photo
Bottom: new pic

benito:
What could be the price of one of those Danner apparatus. Easy to use ? Me  :tongue: :tongue: :tongue: :tongue: for photography.

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