A lighting technique

Images taken in a controlled environment or with a posed subject. All subject types.

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Jbailey
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A lighting technique

Post by Jbailey »

This is a photo of a Quartz crystal lit by "light piping". You put your flash or other light into a box that has a small hole in the top to fit your subject. The light illuminates you subject from the interior to bring out surface details. This is much like darkfield lighting.


Jim
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lauriek
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Post by lauriek »

Interesting idea, I have some lovely quartz crystals with enhydro inclusions and stuff like that, they are a real pain to light from outside, I will have to give this a go at some point!

Jbailey
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Location: Wisconsin, USA

Post by Jbailey »

Thanks for the feedback. I collected minerals and also held various offices in the local collecting society in the 1960's-80's. Most of the local collecting sites have closed, so I no longer do any "prospecting."

Pipe lighting also works well with etched glassware.

Please post your results after you try it..

Jim

Aynia
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Post by Aynia »

Not sure I totally understand you, but I have chrystals so perhaps I shall try this out. :D

It is nicely lit by the way.

rjlittlefield
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Post by rjlittlefield »

Great technique!

This topic really fits in Technical and Studio Photography, though. I'll move it over there.

--Rik

Jbailey
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Joined: Sat Jul 05, 2008 6:45 am
Location: Wisconsin, USA

Reply to Aynia and others to clarify the setup

Post by Jbailey »

The object here is to exclude all light from the crystal except light coming from one end. This is done by sticking one end of the crystal through a tight-fitting hole in the top a closed box. Your flash or other light sits in the box so it shines directly up at the end of the crystal protruding into the box.

You can refine the fit by puting a bit of putty or Plasticene or similar goop around the edges of the hole to block any annoying light leaks past the crystal.

Experiment with the effect and focus using a small flashlight for lighting, then switch to a flash for the actual photo.

Be careful if using hot lights! If left on any more than a few seconds at a time in a closed box can cause a fire or crack your crystal!!!

Jim

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