Photograph or scan your art piece?

When you create art pieces such as paintings and drawings, you may want to show them to everyone, show it to potential buyers, and perhaps sell reproductions.

You have two options to digitize your art. You can scan it or photograph it. Both options have advantages and difficulties. We use photography to “scan” your paintings. The results using photography are super good and at a reasonable cost.

We photograph using a medium format camera with 100 Megapixels. When necessary, we can capture up to 400 megapixels.

Photographing with 400 megapixels would only get any noticeable advantages on very large art with lots of details and color graduations. 


BTS Preparation for Painting photography

Perfect light quality, intensity and color on all canvas.

One of the main challenges of this technique is to distribute the light at the same intensity around all the areas of the art. 

There is no single light placement that would work for all paintings, drawings, and sizes. I prepare the lights in advance of the arrival of the artwork considering its size, media, use of varnishing, frame, etc.

In this photo, you can see the measure of the light intensity and balance as 208. All the other areas should have a very approximate amount of light.

Measuring light intensity on multiple points

Luminosity balance

We use a standard “middle grey” card to check the exposure and color balance. The red, green, and blue need to be at the same level when measured on the grey card.


White balance on a grey card.

Luminosity balance before adjustment wide

Verify the capture and evaluate the results.

After capturing the art piece, we would need to inspect all details such as level, reflections, textures, and dust spots. 

For this part, another critical piece of equipment is required. It is a wide gamut calibrated quality monitor.

Our monitors are 4 K, 32 inch and they support close to 100% of the color space Adobe RGB. That means that we can see colors that we cannot with normal monitors that show only the internet standard sRGB.

Read our monitor calibration article to understand better.

The camera captures the image with all colors of the wide gamut AdobeRGB, we see, compare and adjust our capture using a monitor that also shows all colors. Most printers are able to print a very large number of colors accurately as long as we use the correct printing profile for the media and ink.

So, only by having these monitors, will we be able to judge and adjust the colors to have an accurate reproduction of the work of art. 

Read about preparing files for printing in our Fine Art Printing services.


Monitor after calibration comparing to AdobeRGB and sRGB

Display BenqQ SW3221C Gamut compare to AdobeRGB
Display BenqQ SW3221C Gamut compare to AdobeRGB
Display BenqQ SW3221C Gamut compare to sRGB
Display BenqQ SW3221C Gamut compare to sRGB

How much does it cost?

The price depends on the type of art, medium, and size. There are some issues that may make the job a bit more expensive. Maybe the amount of retouching that we may need to do to remove dust spots, cat hair, and scratches. Maybe the repositioning of lights or multiple exposures to remove unwanted reflections (shining varnishing on paintings), metal paint, etc.

Budget around close to $200 (+GST) for a 90cm x 60cm acrylic paint on canvas, no varnishing, and no frame.


What next?

Simple! Just call me (Jose Aguiar) on 0417509955 or website and we can talk about sizes, types, uses, lights, etc.

If, for any reason, I cannot photograph your art with the quality you need, you do not need to pay anything. Satisfaction guaranteed.  

Read about our fine art printing services. 

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