Critique Flying Saucer

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I came upon the lighting for this photo completely by accident. Transparent glass is usually lit to display its outline with maybe an intentional, small reflection or two added to display the shape of curved glass. Otherwise, the rest of the glass is usually made to appear transparent. In this case, I lit the rim and flat part of the base so they would be displayed almost entirely as a reflection. That's the part that I came upon by accident and I like it because it makes the saucer look more like a flying saucer.

Setup
The tabletop is black velvet. A medium continuous-light lamp shining toward the subject and camera through translucent white plexiglass behind the scene lit the scene. The near rim of the subject was titled upward by a black piece of wood underneath the forward part of the base. That tilt caused the subject's rim and base to reflect the lit plexiglass. The photo was desaturated rather than converted to black-and-white using a color filter.

Mike 2019-11-16--001-S.jpg
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Thank you, Gary!

I have never seen glass lite like this.
I don't remember seeing anything like it either. That explains why I came upon it by accident; otherwise, I would have been looking for a way to make it happen.

Another quiver in your pack- I hope you keep this technique in mind as you explore glass.
Definitely! I always add a description of my lighting setup to an image file's metadata, which makes it easy to look up if I forget how I accomplished a particular look. I suspect that this style of lighting works best or possibly only when the glass subject has a relatively large area where the glass is flat and completely plain with no cutting.
 
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There's such a nice clean look to this image, Mike (as usual). The three-dimesionality of the reflection coupled with the illusion of floating in space is very striking.

Can you elaborate on your decision to desaturate rather than do a B&W conversion?
 
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Thank you also to Nick, Terri and Andy!

Can you elaborate on your decision to desaturate rather than do a B&W conversion?
Short Answer
Probably no more than 1% of the original image was displayed in color. (That little bit of color was the result of prismatic refraction.) When there is so little color, there is no benefit to going to the trouble of converting using a color filter. Instead, a simple move of the Saturation slider to the far left side accomplishes the same look.

Long Answer
The primary reason to convert using a color filter rather than desaturating is that, as in the example of a typical daytime landscape scene, three times as much data is preserved when the conversion process is used. All that extra data gives us the most amount of control during post-processing. So, about 99% of all scenes benefit from converting rather than desaturating.

The other 1% of scenes display a very, very small amount of color. With so little color to be eliminated, the particular color filter being used to convert to B&W has negligible impact over any other filter being used. Off the top of my head, I can only think of four types of scenes that display such a small amount of color: transparent glass, clouds (no other part of the sky) when the sun is relatively high in the sky, an interior made up of black, white and shades of grey, and a scene made up entirely of a black-and-white photo.

The moral of the story: When in doubt, convert; converting rather than desaturating can never, ever hurt.
 
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That's a marvellous effect, Mike!
Sometimes the best results are discovered by accident.

I do think the saucer is flying upside down but we all know how maneuverable these are :)
 

kilofoxtrott

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Wonderful Mike.
Do you know Uranium glass? It's harmless but shines greenish under some light conditions.

Kind regards
Klaus
 
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