Artwork Reproduction Photography Services
Fine Art Reproduction Photography
We’re specialists in photographing paintings, drawings, prints, mixed media and other forms of fine art. We’ve worked with collectors, private owners, institutions as well as the individual artists. The interest in this unique specialty of art photography initiated in Allen (our founder) capturing his own art pieces with precision that led to much experimentation early in his career.
We’ve photographed many fine art pieces where unique challenges were present and other photographers couldn’t find the correct approach. It requires a competency and versatility in approach most photographers simply do not have in their repertoire.
The high-resolution photos and videos we create are often used for limited edition reprints, archival purposes, publications and other forms of print media, as well as a variety of marketing objectives.
We capture most artwork with strobe lights and large light modifiers that make any environment equivalent to a controlled lighting studio. Upon request, we can talk you through the considerations for all the minimally invasive techniques that can be used for fragile and light-sensitive art.
We have all the necessary high-end digital equipment required for most projects, but when we travel, it may be more economical to rent stands and certain tools. In addition to the production investment, our quotation will specifically outline all expenses and fees for travel, logistics, rental and special considerations.
We approach fine art photography like an art historian or an art restoration professional. We go to great lengths and intentionality to ensure we capture and relay the essence of the piece as the eye would experience it.
Most of the pieces we capture for reproduction are paintings, drawings, sketches, and prints. But art extends into other areas and we’re open to other mediums. We’ve filmed and photographed gallery shows and art exhibitions, as well as live art performances, orchestra musical events (and combinations of the two). We also enjoy moving away from flat, 2D works and working with sculpture, mixed media and other forms of art.
Options are available for clients requiring museum-quality reproduction as well as adherence to cultural heritage imaging guidelines such as Metamorfoze and FADGI. We understand the importance of the preservation of cultural heritage material.
The Keys to Success for Fine Art Digitization Photography
Workflow: Process Precision
Above all, we know what is most important in the art digitization workflow. Color accuracy is always critical and we follow a strict color management standard. However, representing the balance and integrity of the texture and shadow is can be equally as important for certain fine art pieces.
It’s a game of nuance and details. Careful consideration is made for texture, color, contrast, and the seemingly infinite unique characteristics of various mediums. The lighting, the angles, the diffusion, the post-production… everything matters! Our entire process is calibrated, yet there are sometimes surprises so fluidity and adaptability is key.
Versatility: Any Location
We’re comfortable shooting in the studio or anywhere else (in the world). We’ve captured in private homes, public locations, warehouses, and other storage locations of fragile or extremely valuable pieces that require us to come to it.
See it Happen + Guide the process
When possible, we prefer shooting tethered to a computer and working next to the decision maker(s) on a calibrated monitor to make on-site decisions on the subtleties to obtain final approvals. It’s far more accurate and efficient, overall. Our process can be customized to suit any curator, art director, owner or interested party’s process visibility preferences.
Confidentiality: Discretion Assured
For those clients requiring confidentiality, we’re happy to sign confidentiality and non-disclosure agreements. We can take additional measures such as stripping all metadata so there is minimal identifiable information embedded within in your images. We never display your images in our marketing without your written approval.
We leverage many tools & techniques:
It takes an artist
to know the art
of art photography
The interest in artwork photography and digitization was initiated in Allen Luke (our founder) capturing his own art pieces with precision that led to much experimentation early in his career. He’s endured the trial-and-error and has learned hot approach digitization correctly in his 17+ years of experience as a commercial photographer. See our About page to learn more in his bio.
As an artist, Allen’s personal work spans many mediums and can be purchased on LukeStudios.com where he donates proceeds to charitable organizations.
You’re not only hiring an art photographer, you’re also getting a painter, designer, and overall visual artist with a strong marketing knowledge and art direction acumen.
Learn about similar services
Ancient Artifacts + Historical Artwork + Sculpture + Archaeological Solutions
Are your art pieces sculptural, delicate, ancient, or extremely valuable?
In such cases, this may fall under our similar offering: Photography Services for Ancient Artifacts, Historical Artwork & Sculptures, and Archaeological Documentation. Our art-capturing abilities have married with our sense of adventure and passion for historical discovery. We travel internationally to work with museums, cultural institutions, universities and archaeologists to document history’s greatest assets. Below are a few examples, but you can learn more here.
Frequently Asked Questions
Well… (here’s the obvious answer) the price depends!
If you’re looking for the best photographer for your artwork, there are many factors to consider. Most relate to the quality of digital reproduction you need (what you want to use the images for), the physical characteristics of the piece (some things are more difficult to capture effectively), and the location relative to the art photographer you choose.
You should have a budget of a at least few thousand if you have valuable artworks that require precise digital reproduction and highly accurate images. Additional considerations include travel, planning, post-production requirements, etc.
If you simply need someone to capture pieces less formally, we’re probably not a fit for your project. We approach the art digitization process scientifically, yet with an artful eye.
The correct projects for us are those where the price is less of a “cost” and more accurately described as an “investment.” The resulting images serve an important purpose for the original art.
Yes, we travel for artwork photography commissions.
We’ve been flown globally for photography assignments such as these. Please inquire about our current travel availability.
In most cases, we use high-quality photography strobes.
There are times where we use natural light sources, LED or other lighting types. Each piece is unique, and so is its objectives and approach.
We front light, back light, side light and shine through. We’ll need to understand your piece and intent, so we know what to do… (that rhymed).
All projects begin with a discovery consultation. If an artwork or artifact is identified as fragile or highly valuable, more formal procedures are followed.
One of the first questions we will ask is if we are allowed to move or touch the piece as somewhat of a litmus test of how formal we need to be. If the answer is no, it’s important that the photo shoot is adequately staffed with personnel who are capable of handling (and, if necessary, moving) the piece.
We require a waiver for all works shipped to and brought to us, so fragile works need to be safeguarded properly. In most cases, it’s better if we come to the piece.
Artifacts and anything with mounts or holding mechanisms need to be discussed in advance of moving or removal.
The first thing we need to get correct is lighting. There are many types of lighting styles (flat, dramatic, etc.) and the position and number of lights are critical. We use various modifiers to achieve a lighting result appropriate for your art piece.
Then, if the images are blurry or not as sharp as you’d like, ensuring your camera and lens settings are correct for your piece is essential. If you don;t have professional quality cameras and lenses that’s one thing, but knowing the proper settings is also important.
To minimize lens distortion, with the best lens possible, be sure to place your camera in the vantage point that is precisely in the center (or at the appropriate angle).
If your depth of field is too shallow (meaning some parts will be in focus while others will not), you need to change your f-stop. You may also run into the limits of your camera, lens and lighting and need to use some post-production techniques such as focus stacking.
If you’re still blurry after trying everything else above, you may be moving the camera subtly, so use a tripod and timer, and increase your shutter speed to over a/100th of a second to reduce camera shake.
If you’re still struggling, you may need to hire a professional like us. It’s a tricky art!
Everything is calibrated because all parts affect the whole.
- We use only the best Nikon cameras and lenses from both Nikon and Sigma.
- Each lens is calibrated to the camera manually for maximum sharpness.
- The color temperature of the lights (with environmental consideration) is calibrated to the camera in each scene.
- We use color calibration tools when capturing such as Calibrite’s Color Checker Photo Passport 2. This is placed in front of the piece in the final lighting configuration.
- The computer’s monitor is calibrated using a mechanical device and custom color profiles.
- We capture multiple lighting and metering variants of the work for flexibility in the post-production editing workflow.
Given all these procedures, every user’s monitor will still give some variance, but we do all we can to accurately represent the work as the human eye sees it.
We only provide digital files and do not do any printing in-house. However, we do offer consultation services to coordinate with a preferred vendor and/or lead you through the print production process.
This depends on a few things. Most of our work is about the size of a human or smaller. In the right setting, we can handle items about the size of a car. If you’re asking for us to capture a side of a building, we may not be a fit. Many of the factors hinge upon on the level of detail you need for your final use.