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Thread: Before posting sword photos for identification/translation - Please Read !

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2015
    Earth (for now)

    Before posting sword photos for identification/translation - Please Read !

    Here are a few tips or recommendations for posting photos of Japanese swords(or any swords) for identification. Following these tips prior to taking or posting your photos will greatly assist those attempting to help you. It will result in faster identification as you won't have to be asked to provide better photos.

    Try shooting the photos against something other than a white background. The camera focuses on the bright white background and results in a dark subject.

    Try photographing it in a brightly lit area like by a window, but not direct sunlight. Raise the blinds (no shadows) or go outside and place it in a brightly lit spot, again not direct sun light. Natural lighting works great. Artificial light works well, but avoid incandescent bulbs as they throw off yellow light.

    Use a single colored background like a dark brown, green or even black towel, cloth, table, wall, etc..

    Crop you photos ! This alone will allow for more sword in the photo and remove distracting and unnecessary background clutter.

    Be sure your photos are in focus !!! It is a complete waste of time to add blurry, out of focus photos.

    Provide full length shots of both sides of the entire blade, close ups of both sides of the the entire tang, close ups of both sides of the tip, more close up shots of any inscriptions which my be on either side of the tang. Do the same for fittings/koshirae/scabbard, if that is what your question is about.

    If submitting a photo of the signature, date, etc., orient your photos correctly. They are read vertically holding the sword tip up, tang down.

    The signature need to be shot straight on and with no flash or reflecting light.

    It is difficult to obtain good quality photos of Japanese swords, but with a little time, effort and patience you should be able to submit focused, legible photos with enough detail to receive some pertinent information.

    Here are some examples for reference:

    Name:  Wak_Mino_FVBU copy.jpg
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    Name:  Wak_Mino_BoshiO_merge.jpg
Views: 989
Size:  97.7 KB

    Name:  Wak_ShigeKuni_NakagoO.jpg
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Size:  100.6 KB

    Name:  Wak_ShigeKuni_Mei.jpg
Views: 987
Size:  99.6 KB

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Comfortably at home

    Thank you for posting that info. I've not been replying to some posts as I get tired of trying to read sideways or download the images to turn them to a readable position. If folks will follow your suggestions, it will make life a lot easier and they may get more responses. Or, maybe I'm just getting to be a grouchy old man. Good going!
    Last edited by Rich S; 01-13-2016 at 03:05 PM.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Blue Ridge, Texas
    Terrific post Ed!
    Hopefully the Admin will turn this into a sticky post so it stays at the top.

    We're all turning into grouchy old men!
    Paul Smith
    "Keep the sharp side and the
    pointy end between you and
    your opponent"

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2001
    North East USA
    Blog Entries
    easier done than said.

    ~ Hostem Hastarum Cuspidibus Salutemus ~

    "Those who beat their swords into plowshares usually end up plowing for those who don't."
    Benjamin Franklin


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