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Thread: Scanning ULF Prints for Web

  1. #1
    Will Whitaker's Avatar
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    Scanning ULF Prints for Web

    What would be the recommendation of those in the know for scanning large prints (12x20 and 14x17, to be specific) for web presentation. I do not need or want high resolution scanning for making digital negatives or anything of the like. I simply want to be able to scan a 12x20 contact print, re-size to fit and upload it to my website (or even just to this forum) for sharing.

    If this involves scanning in sections and then stitching, is there a reliable stitching software for Mac that does not involve Photoshop? I would prefer a standalone application. I do not own Photoshop, nor do I want to go to the expense of purchasing Photoshop.

    Thanks in advance.

  2. #2

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    Re: Scanning ULF Prints for Web

    If it's a large print and all you want is to post on the web, why not take a digital shot of it?

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    Robert Oliver Robert Oliver's Avatar
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    Re: Scanning ULF Prints for Web

    Digital photograph... If you want to do it right, light it with 2-4 lights at 45 degree angles. A copy stand would be ideal.
    Robert Oliver

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    Tracy Storer's Avatar
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    Re: Scanning ULF Prints for Web

    +1 for sticking it on the wall (or copystand) and shooting with digicam.
    Tracy Storer
    Mammoth Camera Company tm
    www.mammothcamera.com

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    LF/ULF Carbon Printer Jim Fitzgerald's Avatar
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    Re: Scanning ULF Prints for Web

    Will, I think I use Adobe Elements from an old computer for my 8x20 prints and then stitched them. For the 14x17's and 11x14's I had to photograph them with my digital camera. I haven't done a large image for a while and the lighting is always the problem.

  6. #6
    Will Whitaker's Avatar
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    Re: Scanning ULF Prints for Web

    The digicam is winning way out in front. I have an ancient and basic Nikon D40 with the kit zoom lens. If I could find a different lens (perhaps a prime), I'd feel more confident of the end result. The kit lens is not terribly sharp. The best thing I can say about it is that it has great bokeh, but in places bokeh shouldn't be!

    But understand, too, that I'm NOT looking for an excuse to buy a new digital camera!! I'd love to be able to do this with what I have already on hand.

    'Course, I could hang the F3 on a copy stand and shoot b&w film, then scan that into the digital realm as I have better lenses for the F3 and a Coolscan 35mm film scanner. Talk about the long way 'round! But all I'd have to buy is some film...

    Somehow that appeals to my inner Luddite.

  7. #7

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    Re: Scanning ULF Prints for Web

    If the prints are just B&W, then should be no problem with digicam on copystand or wall mount print. If they have some color, however, then light temps and color artifacts may be obstacles.

  8. #8
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    Re: Scanning ULF Prints for Web

    I'm wrestling with this problem too. I have a copy stand, but I'm finding it difficult to achieve even lighting over anywhere near that large an area.

    For smaller originals I've done some tinkering with photographing a blank white sheet at the same magnification with the idea of making a correction overlay for Photoshop, but it's a nuisance and so far I haven't gotten it quite right.

  9. #9

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    Re: Scanning ULF Prints for Web

    That size should be easy to evenly light and copy as suggested above. I've had galleries copy mine for auctions with digicam and they look fine on the monitor (of course not as good as the original)! I think some were done outside on an overcast day.

    Look forward to seeing the results on your website, or here!

  10. #10
    Steve Sherman's Avatar
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    Re: Scanning ULF Prints for Web

    Quote Originally Posted by Will Whitaker View Post
    What would be the recommendation of those in the know for scanning large prints (12x20 and 14x17, to be specific) for web presentation. I do not need or want high resolution scanning for making digital negatives or anything of the like. I simply want to be able to scan a 12x20 contact print, re-size to fit and upload it to my website (or even just to this forum) for sharing.

    If this involves scanning in sections and then stitching, is there a reliable stitching software for Mac that does not involve Photoshop? I would prefer a standalone application. I do not own Photoshop, nor do I want to go to the expense of purchasing Photoshop.

    Thanks in advance.
    Thx Wil, This is a question I've wondered about for a long time. I have a good friend who owns a large studio, they shot many of my 7x17 with copy lights and a Canon 5D, noticeably better results than my dinosaur 20D nevertheless only a small % of the 5D shots were acceptable to post to the internet.

    Years ago the same studio shot the majority of the 80+ shots on my web site with a view camera with a digital back and an infrared sensor to balance the distances from each corner of the D back to the plane of the finished mounted prints. Terrific results, simply not practical when you only want to record only a few images as you need them.

    When I ask the same knowledgable D photographer about what scanner would suffice, the answer always comes back, if you buy too old a scanner (less $$) than you run the risk of updated software not being able to communicate with the files being generated, or something like that.

    Will watch with interest, Thx Will.

    Cheers


    Real photographs are born wet !

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