Scanning Prints/Negatives for Web Display
Once again I seek advice from the knowledgable APUG community members.
My next project will be to develop a Web site (www.jimmoore.us) where I can showcase some of my work.
I am having a heck of a time getting scans of my prints to ACTUALLY LOOK like my prints.
I am using Adobe Photoshop CS and my scanner is an Epson 2450. So far I have only been scanning my prints. My scanner will scan negatives, but the negative holder is packed away in a box somewhere in the garage.
Any and all suggestions will be greatly appreciated!
So how are you scanning the prints? Greyscale or RGB?
Scanning prints is always a problem. Scanning negs can be a problem for B&W, but works really well for normal c41 film.
I scan at approximately 2 to 4x the final res. CC (I use the curve tool opposed to the cc or variations tool -- less crossover) spot at 100 to 200% and then resize in 3 to 4 steps. If the image is 2000 pixels and I need it to be 500 pixels I will do the following:
1. Resize 2000 down to ~1400, unsharp mask 30 to 40%, 2-3 pixels and 1-5 levels
2 Resize 1400 down to ~ 1000, unsharp mask 30% 1.5 -2 pixels, and 3-7 levels
3 Resize 1000 down to ~ 700, usm 25 - 30% 1-1.5 pixels, and 7-10 levels
4 Resize 700 down to 500, usm 25% 1 pixels, and 10-15 levels
This slow resizing with adjustments in %, pixels and levels gives a more realistic sharpening w/o the halo. Adjust the %, pixels and levels to taste. It is important to do it as you resize and to resize as in steps so that the details survive the lose of pixels.
I also record the whole thing as an action so that i don't have to keep tweaking the USM, and image size settings. The key is to scan everything at the same size. Most scanners are at their best at full resolution -- this may seem obvious. It is far better for you to decide what pixels get thrown out than the scanner.
For B&W use the curve tool to adjust density and contrast and the eyedroppers for black and white points. Don't use auto or the lightness and contrast tool! Also the auto settings on PS are set to .5 for both black and white points I reset and recommend a default of .1.
FWIW I have used this technique on images that have appeared on the websites of GM, Ford, Vistion, Allied Signal, Continental, Compaq, and many other corp websites.
I was bidding on a camera on eBay that was offered by Daniel Anderson, and he mentioned to me during our one of many exchanges that he uses a digital camera to photograph his mounted prints; they're 11x14 and larger, so it's difficult to scan them. Instead, he hangs them on a wall, uses two angled lights, and uses a digital camera to photograph them. He then uses the scanned image for web presentation.
Since the web is such a crappy environment to display photographs, using a digital photograph of a photograph works just fine.
First things first, how is your monitor calibrated?
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I'm not very good at it either but what I can share I will
At the scanning to PS stage use the largest dpi your machine has available and you can tolerate waiting for.
Once in PS reduce the dpi to whatever you are going to upload, 96dpi seems to be the current vogue.
Adjust brightness and contrast to your monitor, apply unsharp mask if necessary and hope the rest of the world has the same settings.
-- totaly agree
Originally Posted by bmac
Calibrate Monitor. Calibrate Scanner. Scan photographs. Not many calibrate their monitors. Even fewer calibrate their scanner. Both steps are required to get the proper scan of a print or a negative.
I have not yet calibrated my monitor or scanner. I have my eye on a calibration package on ebay though.
Mrcallow, I never thought about resizing in "steps". I will give that a try.
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Originally Posted by KenM