getting to a bean picture

well with all the stuff going on here (family and otherwise) i've not been able to get as much time on the bean picture setup and testing things out until recently.
i finally got a rig set up last week so i can get pictures taken without me shaking them or them not being quite right.
http://www.anthive.com/img/photography/thm/DSC_20200318_133126-0400_182_Rig_thm.jpg
http://www.anthive.com/img/photography/thm/DSC_20200318_133235-0400_183_Camera_Mount_thm.jpg
then to start working on the lighting (which is next):
http://www.anthive.com/img/photography/thm/DSC_20200318_140818-0400_185_Getting_There_thm.jpg
if you look at that picture closely (or look at the following picture for even more detail) you might be able to figure out which of the beans in the picture is 1/2 of parent line. i'm not sure what the other parent might be.
can you guess?
http://www.anthive.com/img/photography/DSC_20200318_140818-0400_185_Getting_There.jpg
i had to take some side tracks through a few things to get to where i am at now, but at least making progress.
songbird
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On 2020-03-24 12:29, songbird wrote:

That is a true thing of beauty! What a wonderful picture!
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T wrote:

thank you!
i have a ways to go with the picture taking, i don't want the glare from the flash. still working on that yet. :)
the rig is nice because i can get right down there with the camera with the macro zoom lens. helps to take a good picture when you aren't shaking the camera all over the place.
looks like a nice day this afternoon so i'll be able to get some gardening done today.
songbird
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On 2020-03-25 10:37, songbird wrote:

I have a customer who takes unbelievable surreal photographs. She told me two tips:
1) close ups always look better then telephoto pictures even though they may come out the same size.
2) do not center the picture. Instead cut the shot into 3 vertical pieces and center on the lines between the pieces.
Here is an example of both the above that I took that she liked:
https://ibb.co/kmW0XfH
Note that it is a close up and the flowers are centered on the 2/3 line
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On Wednesday, March 25, 2020 at 1:42:28 PM UTC-4, songbird wrote:

I've found that if you angle the camera a bit instead of taking the picture with the subject directly in front of the camera, the reflection from the flash goes off in the other direction instead of bouncing back into the picture.
Paul
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Pavel314 wrote:

i can't do that for a few reasons. my flash is built into the camera and the camera is directly overhead. the depth of field on a macro zoom lens isn't much at all.
for the moment i've rigged up a reflector which scatters the light from the flash off to the sides and that has helped to reduce the glare by quite a bit, but it also reduces the light so i'm not sure i want to do this but the results are acceptable and i can bump things back up in post-processing fairly easy.
if i need to use a different lighting rig that's likely not going to be easily done with the current situation of disruption with the virus and how people may not be working or shipping things. i can try to set up a bit more light for fun too to see what effect that might have.
good projects to mess around with now if i can't get outside much, but it looks like i will be able to get back outside today again for a little while. have to build up my stamina gradually.
songbird
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On Thursday, March 26, 2020 at 10:12:31 AM UTC-4, songbird wrote:

Can you tilt the subject field a bit? Not too much, or the beans will roll off.
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Pavel314 wrote: ...

right, plus with the macro zoom you really want a flat field as much as possible so trying to angle away cuts down on how much will be in focus, which defeats my purposes of this project.
songbird
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songbird wrote:

http://www.anthive.com/img/photography/DSC_20200318_140818-0400_185_Gettin g_There.jpg

I've had similar lighting problems with both my seemingly ancient Sony Mavica and now my new-ish (as of December 2018) Nikon D3400. I chose the Nikon since it is compatible with the lenses (including a macro lens) that I had bought for my Nikon film camera last century.
I've been downloading all sorts of ebooks about DSLR photography in general and food photography in particular, but haven't had time to spent reading and experimenting. (Although if this lockdown continues, I may soon have some time to spend with it.)
Anyhow, since I can't really afford to purchase all the lighting doodads recommended for the type of photography I want to do, I'm planning on trying to make-do with some things on hand.
I've got a couple of daylight Ott lights meant for desktop use. I'm thinking of using those plus some sort of scrim setup to filter the lights. Don't laugh, but I"m considering using a couple of 14 inch diameter embroidery hoops a neighbor gave me then stretching some plain muslin fabric across them and placing them in front of the lights.
The only thing I haven't figured out yet is what to use to get the hoops to stay in place on a table. I'm thinking large binder clips as "feet" for each, but of course, I can't find any large binder clips on hand. No way I'm heading to a store to get any either. :/
Anyone have any other ideas for re-purposing on-hand items to help with lighting or other photography issues?
Nyssa, who has already planted one vegetable bed with lettuce and some old snap pea seeds she found and hopes to start clearing another bed later today
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wrote:

Piece of white posterboard, lit by whatever as a "soft light" reflector. The saving grace is that the current sensors are _much_ more sensitive, so insane light levels not needed.
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Gary Woods wrote:

yes, so far that is what i'm finding out.
there are various youtube videos you can find which show various kinds of light filters or softeners.
for me, i came up with a piece of plastic which i can hang right off the overhead camera/flash (they are attached) and on that i used double sided tape to hold some small mirrors to a piece of foam so that it deflects the light from the flash off to the sides.
the hook itself is made from a piece of plastic cut from a milk carton, so it is stiff enough to be shaped and hold it's shape and also to be bent to the angle i needed for it to be.
it works to get rid of the worst of the glare from the flash and working so close up.
i'm not sure yet this is my final set up for doing the pictures i want to take but it sure looks a lot better now than it did before.
i'm still trying other things too as i get the time and inclination in between bouts of gardening and the other things going on.
there are other things that eventually can be done from making other flash unit redirectors to get the light i want, and they aren't expensive to do either, just a few $ - so that is nice. the hard part now is that can't go get things from the stores so just have to be patient and work with what i have on hand.
luckily i did get all the hardware i needed for this initial foray before the shipping stuff started to be restricted.
songbird
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