Photigy Studio Photography Where Passion Meets Profession

Questions and Answers.

Quite often I receive interesting questions about the particular lighting setup or issue with the particular shot that other photographers are dealing with and such questions is not directly related to any post I have here in the blog. So, instead of sending me an email, please post any off-topic photography-related question here as a reply. Anyone can contribute an answer as well, I am not only the one who knows how to shoot;-).

I’ll start to post here what I have in my mail, questions I’ve received and answers I sent back (with sender permission of course). By default I won’t be publishing a full names, unless you ask me to do so. I promise I’ll be checking this tread as often as my mailbox:-)


161 Responses on Sticky OT: Questions and Answers thread"

  1. Johan says:


    I come from the world of studio macro photography and I have an odd issue that I was hoping someone more experienced than me might have some insight into, namely odd shadows. I use a smallhd field monitor as background (I pipe PC output onto it, ie a photoshop gradient) and use 3 synced flashes to illuminate my subject. Typical exposure is 1s which gets both the light falling onto the subject from the flash pop and the light on the monitor.


    When I look at individual hairs on my subject, often there is a dark shadow to one sde of the hair and a corresponding light area on the other. Not on the hair itself but beside, on some virtual plane parallel to the hair (ie not on the monitor plane). The strength of the effect seems to vary a lot, it isn’t related to monitor orientation and actually becomes more extreme on shorter exposures (further removed from the hair).

    I was wondering if anyone had any insight into what might be going on?

    Many thanks

  2. bonc says:

    Hi Alex,

    I was recently reading on your web site, “how to advertise” but can’t find it anymore.
    If you don’t mind to share your tips how to advertise, where is in your opinion money best spend for advertising, etc… I am sure bunch of guys/girls who follows you will appreciate just like I will.

    BTW, I like your tips/tricks of trade for product photography.
    Will soon submit few of my images for CC.

    Thanks in advance.

  3. David says:

    Hi Alex, first of all i would like to thank you for sharing so much valuable photography tips & tricks. I have found many useful resources here, thank you.
    I am a photography student and have a project to mimic a shot as in the following link:
    I have made several attempts:
    1. Threw something into the fishtank
    2. Sprayed water behind the object
    3. Made splashes on the surface of the water
    However, none of those attempts successfully create the explosive and powerful water-blast effect as seen in the link. I understand that the final result will require plenty of work in Photoshop.
    Any advice you can share regarding creating the powerful effect is greatly appreciated.
    Thank you very much for your kind reply.

    • David,
      Yes, these are composite images, so you do a splashes with desired shape and then shoot a bottle. I never have create that exact splash shape with lots of little drops around, so you have to experiment. I can be some h-speed slap on a shallow colored water, so it will create many little splashes around. You have to work it out.. good luck!;-)

      • David says:

        @Alex Koloskov,

        Thank you so much alex for your advice and your quick reply, I really don’t have any idea how to make that little splashes,but I’ll try again.

  4. Marc says:

    Hi Alex, I’ve got a question for you. I only ask because you have been so kind to share a lot of your techniques with us. I have a large movie poster and early Hollywood glamor photography collection. I’m in the process of cataloging the collection for sale. Right now I’m at the point where I need to photograph a large collection of photographs, most 8×10 and 11×14. I need to get the most accurate representation as possible for collectors. Any tips on the best way to shoot photographs?

  5. Nicholas says:

    Hi Alex.

    Your blog has been really inspirational! I still have some questions concearning light.
    I have stared out a product photography bussiness for myself, as the first custemers are jewellery company and a flowershop. The last one works out well and we both are happy. Not so with jewellery.
    I tend to get dull looking pictures. All the silver has a satin effect. How can I get a sharp light on the silver part of the ring, whil not burning out whites and getting my whole room to reflect from the ring. Also how to make the small dimonds to sparkle. Maybe a led lamp? The strongest one I found from local market is 550lm, not enough to couple with my other bulbs, that are 1450lm each. Here is a scetsh of the setup I used. And down below some examples of the ring. Reflection is digitally manipulated. I guess I must shoot the reflection extra in the future, to get it as it shoud be. The ring and reflection are not the same.




    • Nicholas,
      Interesting results, thank you for posting.
      I use more diffused light to create seamless gradient on a cone diffuser around the jewelry, and sometime I made a hole in it to spark a diamond through it with intense beam of light. Little mirrors around may help to fire some sparks as well.
      Right now I am working on LED lighting setup for my new jewelry book, this will be covered there.
      Thank you!

  6. Ray says:

    I have been reading your site about the view camera adapters for 35mm dSLR cameras and I am interesting in introducing this into my work set-up. I need the ability to shoot not only individual pieces of jewelry, but also full-page layouts with multiple types of pieces. In the past I’ve shot with a cropped dSLR and a macro lens and pieced everything together in PS, however, I would like to do all of this in camera upon capture.

    I will be upgrading my camera body to a Canon 5D Mark II soon and I am shopping for the best view camera adapter and lens to suit my needs. Mostly I am looking at a Cambo or Horseman adapter, and Schneider or Rodenstock Macro lens (80-100, probably). Would a macro lens also allow me to shoot a page layout of jewelry (8.5×11″), or would I need a different lens to do that?

    When using the dSLR in the view camera adapter, how does it all work? Would I trigger the shutter from a shutter release on the lens, or via the camera body? Also, would I have the ability to shoot tethered to a computer (utilizing live view/ remote control) while using the view camera system? Additionally, is the camera capable of capturing video while using the view camera set-up? Would you also consider purchasing a macro lens (i.e.- 100mm f2.8) to put on the body without the view camera setup?

    I appreciate your thoughts and all of your work on this blog…thanks for your time!

    • Ray,
      I have a video from a Dslr mounted on rails, search the blog “tilt-shift” or similar keyphrase.
      I did not use lens with shutter with dslr, but enlargement lens, so the only camera shutter was working. To use dslr with lens shutter, you’ll need some sync cable, or just set lens shutter to “open” and you your camera shutter.

      As for the macro lens, you need to check lens spec: usually it says what magnification it is good for. I guess any tabletop shots would be OK with macro lens. They are not good at infinity focus, which is not a case.

      Good luck with your build!

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