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03-15-2009, 07:36 AM   #1
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which Lens Is best for shooting oil paintings?

Hi,

I am going to be new user of Pentax camera.
I want to buy the k2000 camera.
I need it for shooting oil paintings and than to print them on canvas- to make reproduction of the paintings.

I need your advice! is the Pentax K2000 is good for this and Which Lens shuold I use? ( it comes with the 18-55MM kit.)to get the best quality?

and which lens gives the smallest distortion?
sorry for my ENG....:

10nx in ahead!

03-15-2009, 08:07 AM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by hwgeek Quote
Hi,

I am going to be new user of Pentax camera.
I want to buy the k2000 camera.
I need it for shooting oil paintings and than to print them on canvas- to make reproduction of the paintings.

I need your advice! is the Pentax K2000 is good for this and Which Lens shuold I use? ( it comes with the 18-55MM kit.)to get the best quality?

and which lens gives the smallest distortion?
sorry for my ENG....:

10nx in ahead!
A 50-58mm will probably have the least distortion and will be the sharpest. The cheapest Pentax 50mm is very, very sharp and has minimal distortion.

The DA 35ltd macro is another good choice.

This was taken with the Cosina 55 1.2 at a large aperture (think it was f/2). It was taken at an angle just for fun, but the color recreation was spot-on, and it was very sharp even at f/2.

03-15-2009, 08:31 AM   #3
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1- First, I would look for an APO lens (better color focus), specially usefull in reproductioon work. LEICA, NIKON, CANON, PENTAX, will be usefull.

2- Other alternative, a lens to great format, like the used in works of publicity. (rodenstock, schenider, fuji, nikon, etc)

3- A solid, very solid, tripod.

4- Don't forget the permission from particular museums or collections, since your activity is a lucrative ones.
03-15-2009, 08:37 AM   #4
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On a similar thread, I advised using inexpensive flatfield enlarger lenses on bellows. Or use any standard lens, right on-camera. The lens focal length depends on how much room you have to work in - a short tele flattens the image. What's important are stability and light. Use a tripod if possible, with mirror lockup to avoid vibration. Set the camera to slowest ISO - the grain of the canvas will swamp-out any pixelation except at huge enlargements. Stop down the lens to a middle aperture like f/8, which also flattens the image. Don't use flash. Match the WB to your light. You are hopefully in no hurry with each picture, so take it slow and easy.

03-15-2009, 09:00 AM   #5
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It's very tough to do--I was involved in a project for the Brooklyn Museum back in the 70s doing just this.

And yeah--Brooklyn actually has a museum. It's right next to a juvenile detention facility. (Hah! Just kidding.)

The problem is the paintings are seldom hung in a way that you can shoot them at correct height and angle of view, and they distort. (Top width is wider than bottom width, etc.) It takes endless fiddling with your tripod height, and even when everything looks okay, when you view at large size or print, you'll clearly see the lines don't stay straight and true at 90 degrees. This is where shooting with a camera with a gridded focusing screen is VERY helpful.

Add the fact that the paintings' aspect ratios will be all over the place, whereas the camera's is fixed, and you find yourself shooting a lot of "wall," which is additionally distracting.

HOWEVER, since you're shooting digital, you'll be able to fix the distortion with Photoshop's (or another app's) Perspective function. Mind you, you want to get the original shot as close as you can, even though you can make ANY bad shot look correct. The thing is, if you're too far off with your original shot, you'll wind up really affecting the integrity of the painting when you digitally mess with Perspective after the fact.
03-15-2009, 09:19 AM   #6
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That's a killer shot J! Love it.

c[_]
03-15-2009, 10:32 AM   #7
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You may want to take a polarizing filter along; as I recall there can be specular reflections from the glossy paint surfaces.

My intuition is that a shorter focal length lens will be preferable to a long one from the standpoint of killing polarized reflections due to ambient light.

I just tried it and saw a little effect.

Dave
03-15-2009, 10:49 AM   #8
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Original Poster
thanks for the help.
I need this camera for my client who are painters' and they want to produce art prints from their paintings.

I am From Israel, here the pentax K2000 kit with 18-55MM cost 476$
what do you think, would I get good image quality from this camera?
On dpreview they compared it to canon eos 1000D and the canon had some advantage but here its price is very high - 760$ for the kit.
I thought to buy the K2000 and with the spare money to buy good lens.
what do you think?

I will use tripod and good lightning

can you recommend on specific lens model and then I will try to find it here or in eBay

Thanks for All!!

03-15-2009, 11:31 AM   #9
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I'm assuming you mean shooting your own artwork, not pictures hanging in museums.

See the recent thread on shooting artwork in the Beginner's forum. I posted there suggesting a cheap manual focus 50mm lens abd gave some tips on technique, too. I'll add that I don't know what size you work - if you work very small (say, 5x7" or less) you might want a logner focal length, and if you work very large (say, 24x36" or more) you might want a shorter focal length. You can use your 18-55 to figure out what focal length will work best for you, but then you should probably get a better lens at that focal length if possible. Since you'll be wanting to use manual focus for this anyhow, you've got lots of great cheap options, including 28mm, 50mm, and 100mm lenses for $100 or less.
03-16-2009, 01:28 AM   #10
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Why can't I see the comment I wrote?

I am going to shoot 120*80 CM paintings of my clients
I have room space of 3~4 Meter from the painting Max

I taught to buy Pentax DA 40mm f/2.8 Limited
I saw the review on this lens and it look good, sharp image and low distortion
http://www.photozone.de/pentax/124-pentax-smc-da-40mm-f28-limited-review--test-report?start=1
what do you think?
cam I use it on 120*80cm with my room space?
10nx!
03-16-2009, 01:49 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by hwgeek Quote
Why can't I see the comment I wrote?

I am going to shoot 120*80 CM paintings of my clients
I have room space of 3~4 Meter from the painting Max

I taught to buy Pentax DA 40mm f/2.8 Limited
I saw the review on this lens and it look good, sharp image and low distortion
Pentax SMC-DA 40mm f/2.8 Limited Review / Test Report
what do you think?
cam I use it on 120*80cm with my room space?
10nx!
With that little space, a 50mm will be too tight, so thinking DA40mm might be good. The mentioned DA35mm ltd macro might also be good, or the FA35mm. Test with a zoom what focal length that work for you The 35mm ltd macro will also let you do close shots of details if you are interrested in that.

If true color reproduction is important, try to shoot some sort of colorscale each time with the same settings before/after you shoot the painting. Then you can use that colorscale to find out how to post process the pictures to get exactly the same colors reproduced (or as close as you can get).
03-16-2009, 01:54 AM   #12
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Use a lens with a moderate angle of view that is flat field corrected and capable of very high center and corner resolution. That would mean something like a 50mm macro lens. Too wide a lens and you risk corner distortions. Ensure the lighting is relatively even and flat with no hotspots. Also a good idea to ensure your WB is spot on to give accurate colour reproduction and no colour casts.
03-16-2009, 01:00 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by hwgeek Quote
Why can't I see the comment I wrote?
Sometimes, I find that I have hit "Preview" instead of "Post", and something I think I posted was actually not posted.

QuoteQuote:
I am going to shoot 120*80 CM paintings of my clients
I have room space of 3~4 Meter from the painting Max
I suspect that would be fine with either a 50mm or 40mm lens - and the DA40 is a fine one. The easiest way to check would be to use the 18-55 to see what focal lengths actually do work. But FWIW, unless you *really* know what you are doing with lighting, and have very high quality color-balanced lights, polarizing filters to help with reflections, and way more patience to set it all up well than I do, I would reiterate my advice from the other thread - it is *far* easier to get good results shooting outdoors in the shade than indoors. Color is more natural, there is less worry about reflections from heavy brushstrokes, and there is plenty of light to allow you to stop the lens way down and still get a decent shutter speed. Of course, you will presumably be using a tripod, but still, even a tripod shorter shutter speeds beat longer ones.

The DA40, BTW, *is* a great sharp lens, but I would observe that it is not the easiest lens to focus manually. I mean, the ring turns easily enough, but it doesn't turn very far from closest focus to infinity, so it's much harder to focus *precisely* than most older lenses. As a result, you'll probably have to settle for autofocus, and if you are trying to do that under artificial light indoors, that is unlikely to do as well as focusing manually.
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