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Using the Scanner to take Pictures

I have found it tedious and difficult to take pictures of models using an ordinary camera, getting the right depth of focus and lighting are always hard for me. The trouble is that is only when I get the photo's back, do I realise that the results are not what I wanted.

Thanks to friends on Origami L I discovered that a far better way was to use my flat bed scanner. I can then see straight away if I have got what I wanted and further I can use digital enhancing techniques to improve the picture. The problem is when you want to scan a 3D model, it is difficult to do this using the scanner in the normal way. But there is a way round it.

This is the set-up that I used to take the images below.The scanner is tipped on to its side and in front of the glass screen is a box covered in black material. This is so arranged that it is located at the centre of the glass screen. On this box the 3D model can be arranged at whatever angle is desired. I preferred to be as close to the glass as possible. You can see my pureland box in position with the lid of the scanner fully open. Since the background will not be lit this comes out as black (or blackish) in the scanned picture. This is a great help in selecting just the box when editing the result in a paint program. The scan is now done in the usual way and in spite of the scanner being on its side I have had no problems. The scan works on rails so this seems to safe enough. The picture on the left was taken with my very old video camera and then the moving image captured using the 'Snappy' a device which plugs into the parallel port and contains some very clever hardware.

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This is the result after a little sharpening in my photo paint program. Compare this with the result on right

  This was taken with my Olympus SLR camera. I have tried to get the same position for comparison. The images here are very poor compared with the originals no doubt due to making them as small as possible using reduction followed by JPG. The box is my Pureland with Mount Fujiyama on the lid.

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