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Artificial eyeball light-source reflections problem.

Discussion in 'Help Team' started by Footloose, Dec 7, 2018 at 3:25 AM.

  1. Footloose

    Footloose Well-Known Member

    I have a couple of life-size artificial mannequin-grade eyeballs (made of plastic, not glass) which when trying to photograph, which suffer from pinpoints of light showing on them, similar to the light source I am using to illuminate them. Unfortunately, this light source impacts on the iris, rather than the white surrounding the iris.

    In the project I am undertaking, I'm only actually going to be using one eyeball and want the iris to also face directly towards the camera, rather than 'looking' to one side, as shown below.

    The fact that eyeballs are circular/curved surfaces makes photographing them more difficult and employing a polarizer on the camera lens, doesn't solve the problem. I've heard of employing polariser(s) over the light source and maybe also still using one on the lens as well, indeed going to solve the problem I am having, or do I need to use some other form of very widely spread/diffused light source, or another method that hasn't as yet occurred to me? Below is a photo so people can see the problem I'm getting. I would be able to photograph this at a longer distance away to increase the amount of DOF, because I want as much detail of the work undertaken on these, which is of pretty exceptional quality and far greater than the image attached would indicate they possess.

    It's also just occurred to me that I might be able to apply a removable non-reflective coating over the eyeball, but what that substance would need to be, I have no idea at all! I'm guessing that there IS a way of photographing this item, but how, is another matter!


  2. Benchista

    Benchista Which Tyler

    You need a much more diffused light source. The simple answer is shoot outdoors on a cloudy day to take advantage of the world's largest and cheapest softbox.
    Inside, a light tent might help - basically, anything to make that light source less concentrated.
    Geren and peterba like this.
  3. Geren

    Geren Well-Known Member

    Bigger light source, closer to the eyeballs, much more diffusing material between light source and eyeball. You may need some clamps and stands (which could be as simple as bulldog/paper clips and decently tall candlesticks if you don't have 'actual' clamps and stands, and lots of white baking parchment. You can experiement with how many layers of it you need to properly diffuse the light.
    peterba likes this.
  4. peterba

    peterba Well-Known Member

    At first, I thought that the image in Post #1 was an extra-large "Eek!" smiley... ;)
    Last edited: Dec 7, 2018 at 9:18 AM
    Done_rundleCams likes this.
  5. Terrywoodenpic

    Terrywoodenpic Well-Known Member

    Eye balls are shiny and always show reflections.
    The more general and non directional this is, the less the individual reflections show.
    If you lose all reflections it will look neither like a ball nor shiny as it should. It will not look real at all.
    Take it into a well generally lit room and look at it from various positions and find a spot that looks most natural, and shoot that.
    Out doors in the shade could be equally good.

    You may well need to use focus fusion to get it with sufficient depth.
  6. AlanW

    AlanW Well-Known Member

    There's always the clone tool in Photoshop.

    EyeBallReflection #2.jpg
    Done_rundleCams and peterba like this.
  7. Catriona

    Catriona Well-Known Member

    Flat light, tripod, cable release or delay, small aperture, long exposure. Done.

    PS Macro if you have that setting.
  8. daft_biker

    daft_biker Action Man!

    Making the spectral highlights bigger with a bigger light source might be enough but if you do want to go down the cross polarised route it is probably easier with a continuous light source and sheet polariser. It's been a while since I tried but getting polarisers aligned on flashes is trial and error and the polarisers on the lights gets cooked and ruined which is why you don't want to be putting expensive glass filters over hot lights.

    I'd go with Terry's suggestion of doing it indoors and putting a nice window reflection somewhere that looks natural.
  9. Footloose

    Footloose Well-Known Member

    Thanks for all the useful advice, which means I'm close to getting somewhere with this project, which is to produce a modern version of an Ilford/Ciba-Geigy product sample back in the 70s which their 'Reps' were given to show customers and was subsequently withdrawn and I gather, all the examples of it, were then promptly destroyed!

    When it's finished, I'll post it on the 'Lounge' thread ...
    Done_rundleCams likes this.

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