Reply To: Photographing bronze coins

Reply To: Photographing bronze coins 2015-02-03T22:06:57+00:00

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DVCollectorDVCollector
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Post count: 103

Yep–there are some bright points on the portrait. I find that’s common no matter the lighting angle…it’s especially problematic when shooting a coin that probably had some cleaning, as is the case below. The metal is reflective, but not from luster–so you end up with hot points. These can be minimized in post-processing sometimes.

1902 cleaned

On the other hand, when a coin is mid-AU and better, the highlights are easily controlled–using a lighting method I’ve developed. 🙂 The AU-MS coin reflects light off luster rather than polish, so there are few specular highlights. This method also maximizes the details captured on the coin, such as breaks, clash marks, and doubling.

1864 no L with die lines

Since this technique literally picks out ever detail, it’s great for MS coins. But, for the same reason, the results are really lousy on circulated coins. As a demo, here’s the 1907 RPD-043 shot with low-angle directional light. This is the best method for worn coins, as it minimizes all the hits, scratches and dents:

1907 RPD-043

Compare the same area on this coin shot with my method for high grade coins. As you can see, the RPD is nearly impossible to see, because every scratch and mark obscures the 0/0. The result looks like a war zone!

This just doesn't work


  • This reply was modified 2 years, 10 months ago by DVCollector DVCollector.