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Scanning jewelry

I am using my scanner to keep pictures of pieces as I make them. I
have a HP scanner/printer. It scans “okay” but I am wondering if
there is anything I can do to sharpen up the images and get more
details. Mostly these scans are for my records. I get real photos
taken for other uses.

If any of you also scan jewelry do you have any hints for get the
most out of the scans?

Carla Fox

Hi Carla,

I would think it would make a big difference what resolution you are
scanning at. Check to see what your scanning software is set at - I
would scan at at least 300 dpi - you might fiddle with contrast and
whatever other controls are built into the software. Otherwise take
you high res. scan into a program like photoshop and work with
Levels to bring up the details.

I don’t normally scan my jewelry - I’m sure others will have more
explicit suggestions.

In Leaburg, OR

A couple of things to try. Set the DPI up to 600-800 or even as
high as 1200 depending on what you are using the scan for. Printed
matter needs a higher DPI. I use the 600 for most of this. For
computers, email etc. a 300 DPI is usually enough and takes less
time to load. For printing photo quality on glossy paper I use 1200
DPI for a sharper image even though it slows down the scan and the
computer. You can also try laying a sheet of colored paper over the
piece instead of lowering the top of the scanner. You remove the
weight of the lid this way and can keep the jewelry set a different
angle. You can also tack the jewelry to the paper with a dab of
sticky wax to hold it at difficult angles. The back ground color can
also help the scan of colored stones… Last but not least you can
also import your scan images into a photo shop or dark room program
and adjust them there… Good luck. I use scans to document all of my
work and use the images in my inventory control and consignment
documents… Frank Goss

How to sharpen up the images and get more details in scanning.

I use mh HP scanner to save and send images of my new work to
friends before having the photography done. After scanning and
saving to jpg, I open the image in a digital camera program, Image
Expert, and work with corrections for brightness, color, saturation
and sharpness.

Donna in VA

Hi, Carla,

I hope nobody minds my posting this again, but recently I posted a
link to an article I’ve written about tips on scanning jewelry:

Hope this info helps! :o)

Rena Klingenberg

Regarding scanning jewelry and other non-flat images. You may also
consider covering your pieces with black velvet or another matt
finish, drapy fabric, as opposed to covering with paper as a
background. As always in scanning, the higher the resolution, the
finer the image detail. Good luck

Hi Carla,

I put down my camera and started scanning about two years ago and am
very pleased with the results. As long as I use Photoshop. I
regularly scan my jewelry and load it directly into Photoshop so that
I can crop the image, clean the background, lighten or increase
contrast etc… and turn it into what ever file-type that I need.
Without Photoshop, capturing the image correctly can be very time

Iris SandkFChler
San Francisco

Carla, in addition to what’s been posted already, there’s at least
one more thing to be aware of. The latest scanners have a combined
light source and sensor assembly, which no doubt has a fancy name,
though I don’t know it. The main advantages of this are tighter
control of the relative locations of the parts, easier
manufacturing, fewer parts and so on. There are two practical
outcomes for the user. One, the scanner can be made much thinner
(and be more readily incorporated into all-in-one machines) and,
two, the depth of field is very much reduced.

This last means that paper in contact with the platten is focussed
properly, but anything raised slightly will not be in focus. If
lack of focus rather than resolution is your problem then this may
be the cause. Nothing much you can do about it in that case, except
make flat jewellery!

Kevin (NW England, UK)