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Digital Imaging & Web Graphics & Scanner stuff

Digital photography by scanner, digital camera & 35 mm roll film
cameras. We are located in Australia, we rely heavily on digital
stuff. We love the orchid forum and I will go on to explain & shock
all of the real jewelers out there by telling we are actually
Costume jewelry people. We sincerely value all of the interesting
stuff that you post in & your great mates to everyone, we are
lyncre Pty Ltd.

Now for some ideas from us, we work everyday with this gear. You
gotta make sure that you are purchasing “the output and not the
camera or scanner” you are capable of doing a lot with a little
outlay. We build our computer systems in house and we constantly
try to squezze good images out of affordable gear. Put plenty of
ram in that old computer, try to run you video card at millions of
colors not 256 as standard, if you can select 800x600 thats good,
don’t rush out and buy some wiz bang graphic program, lots of
freeware and shareware that’s ok, remember if your lighting and
focus is ok then that’s all you need.

Next: try to save first image from camera or scanner as a tif
(this will shock you!) why not a jpeg, well every time we play with
a jpeg the levels of compression stuff it up a little more. Say the
image is now even 2.3megs, decide on the required final size and
pump it out there as say 200x 200 pixels for an example in a one
step into a jpeg, straight from the tif, still retaining millions
of colors with only 1 step of compression, no image editing or if
you want to trim it do it whilst it’s a tif image. Try this it
works fine.

Web graphics have to be small and quick to load so we really need
a thumbnail size low resolution pic to load and when a customer
clicks on an image it will switch to another of a larger size. Like
the ones will do if you select the link at the bottom of this page.

We consider a 2.5 meg tif to be a small image as often we create
100 meg ones for various tasks, but you don’t need this, there are
a lot of $100-200.00 scanners out there that will work everyday for
you and create what you need, try using a dense white fabric called
dacron for a quick background over the jewelry resting on a scanner
glass, I think it is usually used for dress shoulder pads and as
padding in lounge chairs, use a white towel over the dacron as a
temp lid above the dacron as a little light may escape, you are
working with scanner lid open. The dacron will in fact illuniminate
and look like some marble. Don’t worry too much about hot spots
when using the dacron as it just seems to take them away, if you
are fussy use the filters or mask tool in any graphics program to
fix it.

In the Costume Jewelry industry these days we have to transfer
numerous reasonable quality images across the net in volume each
day with special instructions to other manufacturers about our
special requests whether it be findings, platings or casting etc.
So color of stones has to be right, rhodium must look like rhodium
and so on, often we have to use high magnification upto 25x for
certain shots, that’s no problem because we use one of our digital
cameras set up on a copy stand (modified from an old photo enlarger
stand ) at a pre determined height above the object, now we use
high magnification diopters for the first generation shot and
create a large tif from this, because the quality is good we are
then able to zoom it to further magnifications for various fine
detail, we then select the crop tool within any graphics program
and virtually cut and save the required section out as a tif, then
finally when we’re happy we shoot it out as a jpeg for small file
size and ready use.

With your photo snapshots 35mm try scanning desired section of
them at 600 dpi initially then try the same with them. One
important thing to remember is that because costume jewelry is so
cheap at a final price we have little latitude to include high
costs associated with equipment, we have to do it quick and cheaply
and get results now. You guys are pretty much the same in these
very competitive times. We have travelled the world with digital
cameras and makeshift 35 mm gear and wasted vast sums of money on
often expensive gear to no avail, now we have a shipper send us the
items and in our little studio we pump out the images of numerous
styles, we have created our own cd catalogues in house for
resellers and we also use images within our database applications.

successful resizing is so important, get to learn it, check out
sizing of images on other peoples web pages. As for digital cameras
choose the one that produces the most pixels if you can afford
that, not the one that gives you the most shots on a disk as often
they are already heavily compressed jpegs, not much hope of zooming
in and snipping a bit out of a pic. The phrases like web ready
pictures is a sign that they are real small pictures. We seem to
have a lot of lot with Kodak dc120 cameras even though the
batteries don’t last very long, we hook up an external power supply
to em and shoot thousands of shots on these babies, we take the
pictures from our mouse and keyboard, we don’t wear out those
camera buttons this way.

Olympus, Canon, Pentax, Agfa and others all make great gear, I
recommend that you think twice about the supplied software with any
of the cameras as often it is only a light version (se) or (lite)
which can be worse than something that you may already have. Most
graphics programs have an option where you select the type of
scanner or camera and then it will allows to to import scanned
images straight in to the application. If you have a choice of 16
or 32bit and it supports it choose 32bit, if you are unsure what to
do to sharpen an image select filters and scroll to required filter
eg: sharpen, enhance but don’t get too carried away remember it’s
really the lighting that got to be right in the first instance.

Build your own mini studio in an unused corner of the room,
actually a real corner would be good as you could position your
object so that each wall would be at a 45 degree angle from object
/ 0 \ sort of like this, now use double sided tape or blue tack
to stick a rectangle of bright white fabric along the walls and
into the corner, let’s say a panel that extends at least 500mm in
each direction out of the corner. Attach it flat on these walls and
corner, keep it horizontal and finish up at least 150 mm below the
level that the object will usually rest on, note: do not stick the
bottom 150mm to wall at this stage as we need that 150mm depth edge
as a folded out flap of fabric, because I want you to fold a piece
of thick card into almost a 45 degree strip that is say 75mm x 75mm
x 1000mm long, this is attached to the wall underneath the bottom
150mm of your fabric, stick the fabric to this and you will now
have some of the light reflected upwards uder your object for
backlighting. You have it, a mini reflector corner at 45 degrees
just like in a studio, this could also be lit using a normal
lighting source and used as an inspection spot for checking out
jewelry for faults or for stone identification etc.

We also have a swing out magnifier in these locations for that
purpose when we are not taking photos. This will work well with 35
mm cameras also. Additional reflectors to enhance product shots can
be made by using cut pieces of foil and white photocopy paper, try
it, you will be pleased, be inventive.

Years ago we did a lot of nature photograpy so we have plenty of
micro gear here to adapt for various tasks. We love our work and we
are sure that there is a lot of jewelry out there that was only
ever intended to be made as costume jewelry, we use lots of
swarovski crystals and cz so lighting has to be right. Please
utilize special lense filters to avoid color casts from flouro,
tungsten sources when using normal 35 mm cameras, but if using
digital cameras the auto white clip system seems to take care of
that one for you.

I hope that I haven’t covered too much info within this message as
it’s a very big topic and we are only still learning, I have
provided a link below all of this text for you to view one of our
little sites on the internet, please read the following
instructions below before going there.

it is very important that you understand that the first images
that you will see will be low quality and should load up quikly, if
you position your mouse curser over any image a small hand will
appear, this means that a link to another photo is evident, another
small tag may appear with image name, it’s good to include this
with any image. Please click on any or all of the images to see
first generation jpegs at full size, our retail customers can judge
our quality this way and make a decision as to what they require
right then and there. We build all of these pages ourselves and do
all of the scripting down here I hope this has helped you a lot and
I look forward to your comments and suggestions. Be our guest go on
& save a few of the larger images and play around with them at your
place it’s ok with us. They aren’t our best they are just average
shots at web size.

Many thanks for listening to our ideas. Try registering as a site
developer with microsoft and kodak or others, they give you plenty
of help and encouragement, especially to new starters and very
interested persons.

ps: this site that I am sending you to isn’t fully finished but it’s ok
for this purpose, when completed it will be huge, for retail and for
wholesale trade customers.

best regards from Heather Casey of Lyncre Pty Ltd. Australia
ph: 613 52721172 fax: 613 52789020 email: @Lyncre_Pty_Ltd_Austr