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Thread: Best way to scan 11x14 prints?

  1. #1

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    Best way to scan 11x14 prints?

    Hello,
    I want to produce final prints on 11x14 fibre paper and then digitize them for the web. What is the best way to scan them? Any recommendations for scanners? I thought I would try to copy stand them but I read that someone could not get the light right no matter what they tried.

    Regards,

    Larry

  2. #2

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    Re: Best way to scan 11x14 prints?

    1. If your 11x14 prints are from digital files, use PS or whatever to make them smaller for quick web downloads and to put a copyright on them to protect their use.

    2. If you have a good scanner, scan them in two pieces and stitch them together.

    3. If you have a copy stand and a digicamera, give it a try. LED desk lamps are pretty cheap and, for 11x14, I'd consider 4 of them.

    4. Farm it out.

  3. #3

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    Re: Best way to scan 11x14 prints?

    Quote Originally Posted by jbenedict View Post
    1. If your 11x14 prints are from digital files, use PS or whatever to make them smaller for quick web downloads and to put a copyright on them to protect their use.

    2. If you have a good scanner, scan them in two pieces and stitch them together.

    3. If you have a copy stand and a digicamera, give it a try. LED desk lamps are pretty cheap and, for 11x14, I'd consider 4 of them.

    4. Farm it out.
    Sorry, I should have been clearer, my prints are made in the darkroom. I hate inkjet prints and think they pale in comparison to silver gelatin prints. There, I said it.

    No, I will not scan the negatives, so that is not a possibility.

    Are there any scanners that will do a good job of scanning 11x14 prints, without stitching.

    Larry

  4. #4
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    Re: Best way to scan 11x14 prints?

    Quote Originally Posted by Larry Kellogg View Post
    Are there any scanners that will do a good job of scanning 11x14 prints, without stitching.
    There are but they will be more expensive. There is the epson 11000xl which does 12x17 but it starts at $2500

    A smaller scanner is going to be much cheeper. And photoshop will automatically stitch it together for you.
    Zak Baker
    zakbaker.photo

    "Sometimes I do get to places just when God's ready to have somebody click the shutter."
    Ansel Adams

  5. #5

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    Re: Best way to scan 11x14 prints?

    Larry, lots of people can get the light right. People photograph flat art all the time. Many people use copy stands. I was taught to do this by my dad when I was a kid. He used photofloods on light stands. They were plenty uneven. Instead of pointing the lights directly at the image, he pointed them across the image, almost towards each other, and used the "spill light" at the edges. To get things even, we held up a gray card and measured with a meter, moved the lights until the reading matched all around. Today we have much better lighting systems, but the long and short of it is that almost all of them work just fine. You can even get nice soft light outside, depending where you live.

    This is entirely doable, with just a little care...

    Good luck,

    Lenny
    EigerStudios
    Museum Quality Drum Scanning and Printing

  6. #6

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    Re: Best way to scan 11x14 prints?

    Quote Originally Posted by Larry Kellogg View Post
    Sorry, I should have been clearer, my prints are made in the darkroom. I hate inkjet prints and think they pale in comparison to silver gelatin prints. There, I said it.

    No, I will not scan the negatives, so that is not a possibility.

    Are there any scanners that will do a good job of scanning 11x14 prints, without stitching.

    Larry
    That's fine. You like what you like. However, since you are putting them on the web, what's the difference in scanning prints and scanning the negatives?

    Here's a thread on the topic. The OP is looking to scan 11x14 drawings:

    http://forum.deviantart.com/art/general/1874894/

    If those suggestions don't pan out, I think you are down to #4. Farm it out.

  7. #7

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    Re: Best way to scan 11x14 prints?

    Quote Originally Posted by jbenedict View Post
    That's fine. You like what you like. However, since you are putting them on the web, what's the difference in scanning prints and scanning the negatives?

    Here's a thread on the topic. The OP is looking to scan 11x14 drawings:

    http://forum.deviantart.com/art/general/1874894/

    If those suggestion don't pan out, I think you are down to #4. Farm it out.
    I will spend a lot of time producing my final print in the darkroom, with dodging and burning, and then I would have to repeat all of those operations in Photoshop. After all that, the resulting image will not look exactly like the silver gelatin print. I have sold off all of my digital gear, and will not go back, except to somehow produce digital files for the web.

    There is a copy stand kicking around the darkroom, perhaps I will adapt it for photographing my prints. Thanks for the advice, Lenny. I really don't want to buy another digital camera, though. Perhaps one of the cheap Mustek ScanExpress scanners will do a good enough job. I don't have desktop space for a huge A3 scanner. I know, I'll check if International Center of Photography in New York has one. They must. I'll use theirs. I don't usually venture to the digital dark side of the house. ;-)

  8. #8

    Re: Best way to scan 11x14 prints?

    Do consider an A3 desktop scanner. Microtek 9800XL A3+ sized scanner works well for me. It was really cheap, but required a lot of cleaning of the entire optical path, as well as the filter right in front of the CCD to get rid of the dreaded streaks. Also, I had to shim the "legs" on which the top platen with the glass rests on slightly in order to get the proper sharpness. Resolution is barely 1200 dpi, and you should create your own profile to get at least close to the colours of the original, but it can produce nice scans. Works pretty fast through a Firewire port connected to an old Apple Powerbook.

  9. #9

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    Re: Best way to scan 11x14 prints?

    no need to scan the negs. I hate doing that and trying to match a darkroom print anyway. Fix a piece of galvanized steel too a flat wall in your house (or just use your fridge), get some magnet strips (the stuff that comes on a coil like tape) fix the prints to the metal. shoot them with your digital camera. two clip on shop lights will work as long as they are placed properly. I get better matches with less work doing this than scanning prints on my epson. Otherwise find an old epson flatbed that has the larger surface. I have one in storage I bought at a yard sale I've never used.

  10. #10

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    Re: Best way to scan 11x14 prints?

    Consider the museum approach for flat artwork - a good copy stand setup. It is not hard to get even illumination across flat art if you know how to read a light meter.

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