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Category: New Questions

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Photography Question 
Joel P. McAfee
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 5/22/2007

Shooting Through Glass

Is there anything I should do to eliminate reflections when shooting a subject through glass (i.e., art work)? Thanks.

8/20/2009 2:05:23 PM

John H. Siskin
BetterPhoto Member
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  The lights need to be at an angle from the subject so the light doesn't reflect back into the lens. Check out this article:
Hope this helps!

8/21/2009 11:12:08 AM

Jon Close
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 5/18/2000
  (a) Don't use direct flash. You need diffused light to avoid reflections from a strobe.
(b) To avoid reflections from room or window lighting, try a polarizer - though be prepared to boost the ISO or use a tripod to cope with the longer shutter speed.

8/21/2009 1:41:27 PM

Carlton Ward
BetterPhoto Member
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member since: 12/13/2005
© Carlton Ward
Canon EOS 40D Digi...
  Tacoma Glass Museum 1
Tacoma Glass Museum 1
I used the select tool and the gradient tool to change the color of the background as it was originally black. The glass itself is untouched.
© Carlton Ward
Canon EOS 40D Digi...
Hi Joel,
I shot a bunch of pics at a glass museum in Tacoma, Wa and as Jon & John have mentioned, you have to constantly be aware of reflections. I try to place the lens against the glass and angle so that the reflections are minimal. There are also rubber lens hoods available -

Both of these pics were taken of glass art pieces and they were both behind glass enclosures so I had a lot to be concerned with for keeping the reflections at a minimum. By placing the lens against the glass, that eliminates the enclosure reflections but I still had the reflections from the glass objects I was shooting. As you can see, I could not prevent some reflection but by choosing the best angle, I was able to keep them down enough that they weren't too distracting from the subject.
Hope this helps,

8/23/2009 9:24:01 PM

Roy Blinston
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 1/4/2005
  One also has to build a Black tent, with camera behind so no ambient reflections come back into the camera. I did this using a simple black curtain with a hole in it for the lens. If you position your camera correctly (to avoid parallax) then the centre of your lens will be exactly the centre of the pic. Ambient light may show the lens in the reflection, so move back further away (out of the ambient light) and zoom in.

8/25/2009 3:31:11 AM

Jill Odice
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member since: 7/1/2005
  Use a polarizer

8/25/2009 9:52:40 AM

Bunny Snow
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member since: 11/16/2004
  I agree with everyone. All is good advice.

I used a polarizer filter on my lens when capturing the countryside from Shanghai to Suzhou, China, by rail. I also made certain I used about a 45 degree angle.

When visiting the Chinese pottery, which was in glass boxes at the Shanghai Natural History Museum, I used a monopod and bounced the flash off the ceiling, which was white. I never used a flash directly into the glass.

Hope this helps.

8/27/2009 1:37:33 PM


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