Thursday, January 5, 2012

My new tent

If you've been wondering what I meant when I said here that I would soon be taking better photos (what's that? you haven't been holding your breath waiting?!), you're about to find out.  No, it's not a new camera!  It's a photo tent kit!  Look!  Here it is set up in my already-crowded sewing room:

Yeah, it's big!  Let me add a tissue box for a little more size perspective:

It came with the 2 lights shown.  They can be set up from any angle, in front of the tent or on the sides to shine through the cloth panels.  They have fluorescent bulbs that give off a soft light, and shining them through the cloth makes an even softer light.  All in all, you get much less glare and sharp shadows in your photos.  See what a nice picture I took of the Kleenex box?  :)

I know I have a lot of practicing to do to learn how to get the best effects.  But here is a quick pic I took when Jess and I first set it up and were experimenting:

Lovely bananas, right?  (Yes, very ripe.  But most of them were eaten soon after, using this recipe, and they were just right - YUM!!  We, however, scooped out the bananas and their toppings and put them on ice cream.  The taste was great, but it made the chips get all hard again. :) )

Okay, 3 days later I took a few more pictures for comparison.  Three remaining bananas from the same bunch.  Definitely riper.  (They're in my freezer now, destined for banana bread or some such goodie someday.)  I took these where I normally would've taken them before getting the tent... on my kitchen countertop.  Note the light reflections from the flash and overhead light here:

And the sharp shadows here, with no flash:

Here I used the flash from a different angle.  No reflections, but see how it kinda "flattened" out the picture?

None of them are nearly as nice as the first banana photo that was taken in the tent.

The kit also came with several solid-colored backdrops that are held on by the velcro tabs you can see in the top photos, so I have a variety of background colors.  We used the white one in the first banana pic, but as you can see, it hadn't been ironed yet.  We didn't have much time.   I have since taken the photos I wanted from Courtney's kitty book, and I'll show them to you soon!

I need to find a better place to set up the tent more permanently, so it's ready when I want to snap a quick pic of something.  The sewing room is just too full of stuff already.  I think I have the place figured out... but I need to get through my box jungle first!  Good incentive! ;)

One funny note:  The tent kit was a gift from Jess 'n Alex.  The tent itself folds up nicely into about a foot diameter circle (believe it or not!) and fits into a fabric case.  I had no idea what I was opening, and as I pulled it out of the case and started unfolding it, it suddenly popped open to full size and hit me in the face!!  No harm done, but it was quite startling and brought some good laughs!!


Anonymous said...

Get Josie in there for some really good kitty pics.
Will your favorite subject fit in there?


Grandma G said...

Josie's already been in it. She was more than eager when Jess and I were setting it up on the kitchen table for our practice session. I didn't take any pics, but Jess might have... I don't remember. I really don't want it cat hairy, though.

Speaking of cubes, you oughta get Trixie one like my cats have. Wispy loves to nap in them.

My favorite subject might have to scrunch into a ball to fit. ;)

Live a Colorful Life said...

We have a light tent too. I wonder if it is by the same company. We got it when I was photographing Mark's fused glass, to avoid the glare of the flash on the glass. I had a hard time refolding it...

Grandma G said...

This is a Kaeser tent. There's a video showing how to fold it. I haven't really tried folding it all the way yet.