Folksy Ltd

Photographing metallic paints

Hi all,

Do any of you ladies and gents have any suggestions for photographing metallic paints?
A number of my cards now feature metallics but I am finding it pretty much impossible to take a picture that shows what they look like!

An overcast day is great for product shots and getting the overall colour right, but the sparkles are only highlighted in bright sunshine and even then my camera doesn’t pick it up properly!

I’m using a Fujifilm x30 which does great macro which I use mostly as I can connect it to my tablet and download photos to edit and list items instead of waiting until the evening for my husband to get off the laptop. I do have a canon Eos 1200d, do you think it would be better with that? It’s overcast so I can’t try it in sunlight right now! Although perhaps if I went and found a torch…!

Any thoughts are gratefully received!

Photographing the sparkles in fordite does tend to require bright and directional sunlight and accepting that the silver will have glare. Sometimes cropping in close to show the sparkles means I can edit out the worst of the glare/ over exposed bits. I have used my work light to attempt to recreate these conditions in winter - my camera is on a tripod and I then set the shot up so that the framing is right keeping the camera in one spot and then use the flexi arm on my light to move it round until I see sparkles in the view finder.

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I haven’t got a flexi arm lamp but it might be worth me getting one any way. For now I might have to wait until the sun comes out ( I might possibly be waiting forever!) unless I can hunt something down in the house that would be of use.

Thanks for the tip though Sasha!

To retain my title of ‘best customer ever’ I had a go at capturing the sparkles on one of your cards. So using this set up

I kept the light and camera in the same place and put rocks under one end of the card until I achieved this

you can sort of see that the pink is a bit sparkly - it certainly doesn’t look like a flat colour like the blue. If I played around with the exposure it might get better but it gives you an idea that it is all about the angles between the card/ light source/ camera.


Yep you most definitely retain that title! I think your technique will work, I’ve purchased a flexi light so I shall have a go once it turns up!

You can definitely see the blue sparkles in the pink (it has blue interference paint mixed in) and it is probably a more subtle effect than some of the other metallics I have.

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