Who needs a camera?

There are so many ways to take pictures these days. You can take them on compact cameras, DSLR cameras, mobile phones, tablets, etc.  There’s an awful lot of photography going on these days that doesn’t use a dedicated camera.  In fact, images taken on mobile phones now account for the majority of images being uploaded to the photo-sharing website Flickr.

Even though there are lots of conventional ways, you can still capture digital images without using a camera at all.  One option is to use a desktop scanner.  It uses a light source and a light sensitive detector, so to me it’s still photography.

“Scanned juicer” by Derek Gale

This is a orange/lemon juicer scanned with the lid open.  The scanner can’t light the background much so it’s come out nice and dark.  The fairly non-directional light source has given some interesting highlights and edge lighting, with a few spectra thrown in for good measure.

Scanners don’t write the whole image all at once, and you can take advantage of the slowness to be a bit creative.

“Scanned orange and hand” by Derek Gale

Here I’ve scanned a cut orange (face down on the scanner glass), and held my hand over it as the scanner head passed along.  Whilst the scan was underway I moved my hand to mimic the action used when juicing the fruit.  My fingers have gone into some very strange shapes.  I didn’t want the background to be black so I held wicker basket lid above the scanner with my other hand.  The end result is somewhat surreal.

Got a desktop scanner?  Why not give it a go?

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