Photography Guidelines

Submitting photographs to specialists


To arrive at a value estimate, a specialist must be able to examine and identify the item in question. If a personal visit is not possible, you will be asked to submit well-focused and detailed photographs. 


You may use any digital camera to produce images at the highest possible resolution. Follow the guidelines below to create appropriate documentary photos.  Attach the images to an email, sending more than one email, if necessary. Always title your email(s) with the name or brief description of the item under consideration. For example: brown ceramic gourd; Stefan Martin castle print; Ralph Blakelock moonlit landscape. It is important to label things carefully to avoid confusion. In the same email send all relevant identifying information.   


Example I

Ceramic Object

  1. Place object on a neutral ground such as white paper or tablecloth.

  2. Adjust lighting to avoid glare and shadows.

  3. Picture the item assembled.

  4. Picture the item unassembled if it has more than one piece.

  5. Picture mark clearly and large enough to read.

  6. Picture decorative details if relevant to identification.

  7. Picture damage, if any.


Example II

Print

  1. Place print (in frame, if framed) flat on a table.

  2. Arrange lighting to avoid glare and reflections.

  3. Shoot picture head on, not from an angle.

  4. Picture complete image, showing margins, signature, title, edition number, and date, if present.

  5. Take separate pictures of signature, title, edition number, and date (if present) at highest possible resolution.

  6. Picture damage, if any.

  7. Picture any identifying information that may appear on the back of the framed print, including the name of the gallery.


Example III

Painting

  1. Place painting (in frame, if framed) flat on a table or hang flat against a wall (not leaning forward). 

  2. Arrange lighting to avoid glare and reflections.

  3. Shoot the picture head on, not from an angle.

  4. Show complete image, including margins, signature and date, if present.

  5. Take separate pictures of signature and date (if present) at highest possible resolution

  6. Picture damage, if any,

  7. Picture any identifying information that may appear on the back of the canvas.


In your email, include measurements, when and how the item was acquired, damage (if any). Do not male electronic marks or measurements on the photographs. Note: Most frames neither add nor detract from the value of a print or painting.

 

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