How to achieve the best photo of your art work

by Dolores Saul

The first time I wanted to enter a painting into the PGE Get Dusty competition, I was very unhappy with the photo I took. It was too dark and didn’t really reproduce the original colours. I couldn’t possibly enter this!
Many artists have the same problem when photographing their artwork and yet it is fairly easy to resolve. In this article, I am going to present you with a simple ‘recipe’ that doesn’t require expert knowledge or expensive equipment. After all, we need our money for new pastels and the best paper, right?
Ingredients:
- A set of Grey Cards (3 cards in white, grey and black). Try Amazon; there are different brands on the market. They all cost around 8 to 10€ for a medium-sized set.

Whitebalance cards
- A compact camera, a SLR or a good smartphone; or ask a friendly neighbor to take pictures with his camera. For each of these cameras, you should set the image size to at least 4x3 (4000x3000) or better. That's about 3-8 MB.
- Software: Picasa (free) or Photoshop should be installed on your computer. Years ago I bought an older version of Photoshop Elements on Ebay for around 40€. You’ll probably get it much cheaper today.