Tamagotchi Photography

Joined: Dec 8 2007, 06:07 AM

Feb 14 2008, 06:21 AM #1

Q: How do I take clear pictures of my tama?

A: Here is a quick overview from Binary, one of our members who take excellent photos of tamagotchi:

Photographing, starting with original object
  • find a place with sufficient lighting
  • angle your Tamagotchi so that glare and reflection from the screen are minimized
  • use the macro setting on the camera
  • never use the flash
  • repeat until you're satisfied: {take a photo and compare what you expected with your results (using the camera's screen), adjust camera location, etc}
Image preparation, starting with file from camera
  • rotate as needed (the ancient version of ArcSoft PhotoStudio that I use can rotate in steps as fine as 1 degree)
  • crop
  • adjust brightness & contrast
  • adjust saturation
  • resample (vary final size based on moire)
  • sharpen (lightly)
  • save as good quaility JPEG
Have a very good source of lighting
Having a very good light source helps a lot. When it's daytime, try going beside the window, or an open door. Hold your tamagotchi with your left hand while holding your camera on your right hand (or vice versa if you're left-handed). The trick is to make your tamagotchi's screen face that source of light, and try to capture enough light so that you can see the pixels very clearly.

If you have to take photos at night where sunlight is not available, make the tama face the source of lighting (a lamp, flourescent light, etc), and tilt/angle your tama make sure it captures enough light and see the actual pixels clearly. An easier alternative is to find a place where you can prop your tama (and make it "stand") while still facing the source of light. This is also a very good solution if you take blurry pictures due to shaky hands.

Ra, one of our members who takes excellent photos, shares:

"I turn on my table-lamp, place my tamagotchi in its cradle in an up-right position, choose the 'macro' option--usually indicated by a flower symbol--and focus in to the screen of my tama. I then move the cradle back and forth under the light until I can see the LCD screen clearly in my camera's screen. Once that's set, I put my wrists on the side of the table to make sure my hands aren't quivering, and I finally take the picture. But of course, my hands aren't always as steady as I would like them to be, so sometimes I take a few shots, and choose the one that looks the best."

Use a tripod
Another excellent tool for any photographer is a tripod. Another member who takes excellent photos is Spudi, and she has kindly shared how she uses this important tool:

"I picked up a little tripod from 'poundland' (yes for a £1)- I expect US stores have an equivalent, 'dollar' store.

It is great for steadying my camera- especially when I am trying to take photos of things when I need my fingers free to press buttons on the tama- and a must when taking video clips!

I use it on my kitchen worktop (yes it really is red) as I have small fluorescent tube lighting under the storage cupboards above. So it's a very good light source.

Here's a couple of pictures I took with a second camera to show my set up."

Use your camera's "macro" and "brightness" settings (if any)
Use your camera's "Macro" mode usually indicated by a flower symbol - that's for taking close up pictures. The "macro" setting/function helps in making your camera focus on the things that are very near your camera's lens.
If you do not use this and you place your camera right in front of your tamagotchi, you'll still have a blurry picture as can be seen in the following example:
Without macro function:

With macro function:
If your camera doesn't have this setting, find what distance works for you. Also, if your camera has a built-in brightness setting, adjusting this helps in taking clear photos. This is especially helpful in poor lighting conditions. Having a photo-editing software and adjusting the brightness/contrast of the photos you took also helps.

Do not use flash
Using flash gives that bright glare on the screen especially when you're holding the tamagotchi very close to the camera, so it's not really useful as seen in the following:
Here is another shot without the use of camera flash (the photo on the right is the same shot but magnified):
IF you do want to use flash, the trick is to make sure the flash is not directed towards the tama's screen. So when looking at the digicam's view finder and the camera's flash is located on your left, you'd have to place your tama on the opposite side in the camera's screen/view finder. The effect of this can be seen in the following photo:

Experiment and be patient
Just experiment angling your tamagotchi so that the screen captures the light (you'll know this when you see the actual pixels very clearly), and patiently continue trying what works in different lighting situations. Once you find what works for you and the current lighting condition, you'll get the hang of it. Take a lot of photos to compare results, and choose the one that looks best.

As Ra puts it: "A lot of people are usually afraid of making mistakes - believing they're supposed to be able to take a 'perfect' photo at the first try. Well, no, that's not true, trial & error is the key here, so don't be afraid to experiment!"