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Are you scanning at 16-bits per channel?  If you do that, and make sure there is no absolute white or black (close but not quite maxing out the sensor) then you should be able to adjust in photoshop, though some of Geoff’s tricks sound interesting for managing the color.  If for some reason you have a bum sensor, it should be obvious at that point.  Silverfast software is very good stuff and you should be able to calibrate the scanner with the color chart they can provide.

 

Britt

 

From: SciArt-L Discussion List-for Natural Science Illustration- <[log in to unmask]> on behalf of Liz Lockett <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To: SciArt-L Discussion List-for Natural Science Illustration- <[log in to unmask]>
Date: Wednesday, July 29, 2020 at 8:08 AM
To: "[log in to unmask]" <[log in to unmask]>
Subject: [EXTERNAL] Re: [SCIART] home scanners

 

For scanning archival images at the museum we use epson scanners at the museum, the  100000xl and SIlverFast Scanning software. The 10000xl is the really big bed scanner with a transparency lid but any scanner with good optical DPI (vs calculated dpi) and a good scanning software should wolk.  

 

Liz Lockett

 

On Tue, Jul 28, 2020 at 9:58 PM Geoff Thompson <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

Dear Marni,

                     I can’t advise on current scanners but I suspect any less expensive scanner will give similar results.

What software are you using to acquire and edit images? It may be possible to alter the settings so the highlights don’t burn out as much.

 

Alternatively they may be there but need recovery in Photoshop.

Please see this video that Les Walkling kindly made for me about his amazing “Reattaching Highlights” action.

https://www.dropbox.com/s/9pyupbtrhpnjqsc/Re_Attaching_Highlights_Movie.mp4?dl=0

 

Tone adjustments in Photoshop are almost impossible to do without changing colour, because of the nature of the RGB color model. You can get round this by copying the background layer twice. Then rename the top layer “color” and the middle layer “grey”. On the color layer click “edit” “fill” on 50% grey in “luminosity” mode. Then right click on the “color” layer, select “Blending options” and change its blending mode to “color”. On the “grey” layer click “edit”, “fill” on 50% Grey in “color” blending mode. You end up with a transparent “color” layer floating above a grey layer, that can be adjusted without changing the colour. I create an action to do this quickly and easily. I then tend to copy the grey layer, adjust the upper with “shadows and highlights”, turn it off with the eye button on the left and adjust the lower layer with levels. I then turn the upper grey layer back on and adjust its opacity, till I get something I like. Sometimes I turn up the saturation in the color layer by 5% to compensate for perceived loss from tone adjustment.

 

Alternatively, if you already have a good quality DSLR camera, with Live-view, preferably a Canon or Nikon, you could purchase a copy stand and Capture One Pro license.

 

Capture One allows you to tether the camera, focussing, composing and capturing images via a computer, direct to its hard drive. We have digitised many thousands of documents, using ordinary fluorescent room light. You need a neutral-grey card (available from photo dealers) to set the correct colour balance with a simple eyedropper tool. We get the focus height and exposure right and then soft-focus photograph a large piece of neutral grey, or perhaps white card. We then create a LCC (Lens Cast Calibration) which is applied to all subsequent photographs. This creates perfect, even lighting and the quality is generally better than a scanner. It’s faster too.

 

Hope that helps,

Geoff Thompson

 

 

From: SciArt-L Discussion List-for Natural Science Illustration- <[log in to unmask]> On Behalf Of Marni Fylling
Sent: Wednesday, 29 July 2020 10:21 AM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: [SCIART] home scanners

 

Hi everyone!

I hope people are doing okay, despite everything.

Wishing you well from Hoboken, NJ.

 

I am looking for advice on a home scanner. For many years, we have gotten along with Epson. I currently have the Epson Perfection V550 Photo, which is probably 4 years old.

The older model did a fine job on a couple of large book projects (I'm doing watercolor with colored pencil and a little ink).

 

This scanner had no detail in the light areas- awful! So I had my husband scan them on his identical model at work- his had no detail in the dark areas.

I ended up combining two scans for each illustration- well over 100 of them. It was labor-intensive and frustrating, but worked out.

 

I am now starting illustrations for a new project, and I think it's time to get an upgrade.

Of course, I'd like to get something economical.

 

Any suggestions or advice would be much appreciated.

Take care and have a great rest of your week!

marni

 

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