Episode 090: Selling the Past (on eBay)

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I want to sell some stuff on eBay and of course I know that it will sell better with a good image. So I set up my “Production Shot Home Studio”, consisting out of a special height adjustable table, a light tent, reflector and flash.

EDIT: See the comments for additional tips about IKEA and other suppliers of high grade photographic equipment.

After that I edited the image in GIMP to get a nice appearance like in a catalogue. Now I see that the white balance is off….. But I am already thinking about putting this thing into our science lab in school istead of putting it into an auction. We don’t have such low pressure measurement devices.


00:40 Setting up the shot
02:45 Opening the image in GIMP
04:25 Making a copy
04:40 Levels tool explained (forgot to cut some stuff away)
07:30 Getting the image brighter
08:40 Switching to curves for finetuning
10:50 Ímproving contrast with copy in overlay mode and layer mask
14:20 Getting the background white
17:50 Wrapping up
19:50 Cropping

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13 thoughts on “Episode 090: Selling the Past (on eBay)

  1. good old times, nice episode
    It’s a personal choice.
    To get rid of that grey, in the upper part of the photo, I would use the clone tool.

  2. Thanks for the nice episode.

    That is a great low budget home studio. You could add a small plate of perspex that can be flexed via two chains. That will give you a nice curved surface without wrinkles.

    For everyone who is interested in this nice light tent of yours, i found it still available for 3,50EUR at IKEA ( http://www.ikea.com/at/de/catalog/products/80119000 ).



  3. Yes, they and the “Baumarkt”, where you can get everything from a sheet of styrofoam as a reflector up to lengths of gas pipe and fittings to build a studio background system. And lots in between. :-)

  4. @Ger
    Are you talking about the shadow?
    Rolf took care of it if thats what you were talking about?
    I thought about the clone tool too, but I would prefer doing it the way Rolf showed us.
    Although it’s almost impossible to see the difference in the white background it is there, and you don’t
    want it to be repetitive. I guess I think Rolfs way is more “Natural”
    Anyways, thanks for the episode, Rolf. It was great :)

    Could the shadow have been from the part of the hamper (The “Laundry Collector”) that was hanging at the top?

  5. James,

    Yes, the shadow. I think I understand the hint to repetitive. The hardest thing is always to get a natural transition.
    To be honest I’ve looked only to the video and didn’t look at the separate available images.
    To get the best transition I use a large clone with feathered edges. I think its a matter of taste and skill.
    What it makes difficult is that it is a large part of grey. But Rolf trimmed the image so cloning can be an option.
    And yes, as said in my first comment I like the shows as you did.

  6. Instead of painting all the background in white you could have used a simple greyscale copy of your image in the layer mask. After increasing the contrast of this monochrome layer mask (and masking out the display of the clocks) you will only have the background masked. This method is way faster and more accurate than painting everything.
    Furthermore, I would scale the image and sharpen it in the end. It’s amazing how much detail is revealed by sharpening. Especially for such accurate pictures it’s really important.
    Apart from this, great show again. Really liked your light tent!

    And BTW: Thanks for mentioning my tip about porting levels into the curves dialogue.

  7. Hi. Why I can’t download nor see the shows?

    I have the firsts 68 videos, but now I can’t download anything… :(

    The server have problems?

    Thanks for all.


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Anything to add from your side of the computer?