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Photographing A Gripper Close By Jonathan Medwig


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Photographing a Gripper Close by Jonathan Medwig


The most important part of taking a good picture of a close is the proper lighting, take your pictures in a bright room, outside is even better. Keep the light above or behind the gripper, if the light is shining directly on the gripper the shine on the aluminum will make the numbers impossible to read. Ideal lighting is straight down. Also, the brighter your setting the faster you can set the shutter speed, and the less likely it is that your picture will be blurred. If it is at all possible, do not use flash. It causes a shine that washes out the numbers, and it gives a picture a "cheap" feel. A picture taken carefully without a flash will look ten times better.


If the room is too dark to take the picture in, (your shutter speed is below 1/60), you have no choice but to use the flash. There is a right way to do this. Take a piece of blank white paper and tape it over the flash bulb. You will need to fold the paper so that there four layers of paper over the flash. This is a poor man’s way of making an adjustable flash, and it works. Now when you take a picture of a close, the numbers will be clearly visible. The colours will still be stark and contrast will be impaired, but at least the gripper will be clearly legible.

Shooting a Double No Set Close

When there are two grippers to get in the shot, using the traditional method photographing the close from the side will not work. To get a good shot of both grippers, have your partner lie down on a bench, or the ground, pointing the camera straight up towards the ceiling. You are going to close the grippers with the handles pointing straight down, towards the floor. This should allow you to get both closed handles, clearly in the shot. If you do not have someone to help you, just set the camera on it’s back and use the timer function.


- Take some of your pictures in black and white or sepia, it’s a nice effect.

- If the numbers on the handles are too faint to see you can etch them in with marker.

- Focus on the handles as closely as possible, is you are too far away you will need to crop the picture (which makes it grainy), and no one will recognize your hand anyway so don’t feel bad about leaving it out.

- Using a tripod will help greatly in keeping your pictures blur free.

- If your camera has a burst setting, (several pictures in quick succession), it will make catching the handles together much easier

- Remember that digital cameras have a small amount of shutter lag, (the time between when you push the shutter and when it actually takes the picture). Get used to the lag on your camera and you will avoid taking pictures of a blank wall.

- Take pride in your pictures, you’ve worked hard to achieve a feat, it deserves a good picture.

Train well.

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