Genealogy: A Guide to Creating Your
By James A. McKane - © 2008-2009 ==================================================================================
Tombstone & Cemetery Photography
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Taking good pictures of tombstones and their inscriptions is not a simple task. I have taken a good many duds of my own! Achieving sharp, clear photos of very old, weathered stones can be particularly difficult even though the stone may be easy to read when you are standing in front of it. However, with a little practice and forethought, getting good photographs is not as difficult as it may seem.
What to Photograph
Since you may never return to your ancestor’s cemetery again, you should carefully examine exactly what you should shoot:
When to Photograph – time of day?
Lighting is the most crucial factor in obtaining good, hi-definition tombstone photographs. If you attempt photos of a stone in the direct sunlight, your success will be limited. However, if you take your shots when the light is striking the stone at an angle, the gravestone will cast shadows in the engraved inscription.
Lighting the Gravestone Artificially
Since it is not always possible to be in the cemetery under the best lighting conditions, it is wise to create a toolkit of portable and improvised lighting methods:
Inscription Enhancement Suggestions
You will find very often that good lighting and all of your tricks to enhance the inscription just don’t do the job. Here are a few do’s and don’ts:
Happy & Successful Shooting!
P.S. - If you have photos of headstones in
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