It is more cost effective to get good equipment to start with.


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Recommendations for avoiding cheap aluminum reflectors as photo lighting.

What to avoid?

Most archaeologists (and many young photographers) start out with the cheap aluminum reflectors, using the blue photo bulbs. The fixtures cost about $3.99, so the price is certainly tempting.

Using hemispherical aluminum reflectors is the best way to do the worst photography imaginable. There is a nice publication on archaeology of Belize that pictures photos of an ancient Maya stelae shot in this manner. Out of courtesy to the poor archaeologist I will not cite it by name. All of my own 1970's field photography used the $3.99 class of lighting. The results are worth precisely $3.99.

Avoid aluminum reflectors. If you have something worth photographing, it is probably worth it to get adequate lighting fixtures.

Bulbman lamps
Bulbman lamps packages

My next move (I was still a student) was to get a Smith Victor set of tungsten lights. They functioned well, but were more suitable for a home studio or other sedentary use.

Within a few years I tried a Lowel Tota-light. I have been using Lowel Tota-lights for over two decades since then. I will admit, however, that the Smith Victor lights are still intact (after three decades!, in storage at the Museo Popol Vuh, Guatemala City.

You will also need lamps (bulbs). We recommend BulbMan as a source for lamps. The lamps pictured here are from BulbMan, in Nevada. They also have offices in Miami and elsewhere. No web site that we have been able to find (they are primarily a wholesaler, and already known to their main clients, but they do also sell to end users).

where and how to store your digital images? RAID, DVD, or CD-R?

 These are the kind of lamps you want, professional tungsten (halogen).

You will also need light stands.

Lots of links to information on desktop publishing hardware/software, www.laser-printer-reviews.org

 

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