Monday, March 24, 2008

Photography

One thing that has consistently tortured me since I started handdyeing is trying to photograph the yarns and fibers so as to do them justice. I am painfully aware that I just don't know enough about photography to be able to do this properly, and I am constantly taking and retaking photos in different settings, with different light sources. I even got one of those little white light tent thingies to see if that would help me take better photos. (It didn't. It looked like I was taking photos on the inside of a parachute. A very wrinkled parachute.)

So recently I discovered a Ravelry group called "Yarnographers" which was designed for people like me.




The focus of the group is on learning more about one's camera and how to take better, more interesting photographs of one's yarns, fibers and knitted projects.



I started by printing out sections of the User's Manual for my camera so I could get to know some of the less obvious functions of my camera. Then I began playing with some of the tips that the Yarnographers suggested.



The photographs in this post are some of the ones I've taken in the past week using info I learned from the Yarnographers group. I still have a ways to go, but at least I am starting to capture a fraction of the gradations of color in my yarns, and the overall quality of light seems better. (By the way, these are all photos of BBF Chunky Wool, about 475 yds a skein, knitting at around 3.5 sts per inch or so, well-priced (if I do say so myself) at $40 a skein. Except the last one which is the Blue-Faced Leicester Superwash Sock yarn...



Diane snagged the BFL rainbow skein, but I like the photo of it so I'm including it even though it's a bit of a tease.)

The willingness of the knitting community to use the Internet to share their knowledge repeatedly astounds me. And although I understand why there is some resistance to people providing technical information and patterns and other valuable services for free through the Web, I would hate to see the knitting community lose this vibrant exchange of ideas that the on-line knitting world provides.

5 comments:

Windansea said...

I belong to yarnographers but haven't done the tutorials yet. Your photos are very good - hard to go wrong with such beautiful yarny subjects.

SewKnitNBeads2 said...

I belong to the group too but didn't read the tutorials yet. I found a good site online. I have a light box - actually a Crate & Barrel box facing the west window with Ott light as standby. This site has good info on lighting and a DIY light box. Have fun.
http://www.strobist.blogspot.com/2006/07/how-to-diy-10-macro-photo-studio.html

Carol said...

Thanks, Pauline! Your photographs are great. I'll have to figure something similar out....

turtlegirl76 said...

I'm so glad you enjoy the group! Even as founder, I've learned so much from the members. It's made me a better photographer. I actually use the Manual setting on it now!

Joe said...

Fortunately my internet photographs can be crap, and the worst that will happen is that someone will get tired of looking at lousy photos and stop coming to my blog.

I'm glad to hear those stupid little photo-tents don't work, because they always looked tempting. I've considered buying an Ott-Lite for those times when I can't get a daylight photograph, but I wouldn't want to carry it with me on my travels.

I'm glad I can settle for uneven photo quality.