Category: Scanner projects

Preview of the DMA’s Concentrations 60: Lucie Stahl



This morning I had the pleasure of attending Dallas Museum of Art’s Press Preview for Concentrations 60: Lucie Stahl. I wasn’t sure what to expect from a scanner artist but it was close enough to photography that I wanted to know more.

Stahl uses a flatbed scanner to create large format images of items such as food, magazine clippings and trash. The results are fascinating and have a very tactile quality. I really enjoyed her image titled Identity which consisted of a Coca-Cola can, flowers, Lucie’s hands and some unknown liquid. Her method of coating the print in resin made it seem as though the strange red liquid was going to drip right off the wall onto the gallery floor. According to the DMA, “Stahl’s work plays with the notion of liquidity in its many forms – from finance to bodily fluids to the malleability of gender, identity, and images.”

Lucie Stahl Identity, 2015 Inkjet print, aluminum, epoxy resin

Lucie Stahl
Identity, 2015
Inkjet print, aluminum, epoxy resin

Creating art using scanners is actually a really fun and easy thing to do. The images you create can be blown up to huge proportions and are still very sharp. You can use flowers, household objects or even faces. Here’s a helpful how-to on scannography.

Even if you’re not ready to start scanning I certainly recommend checking out Concentrations 60: Lucie Stahl. The exhibit opens Friday, September 16, 2016 and runs until March 12, 2017. Admission is free. Visit the DMA website for complete details.

Thank you Tanner Electronics

Tanner Electronics, just north of Dallas, is one of a dying breed of real electronics parts stores. Don’t judge them by their website. They’re too busy stocking cool stuff and helping customers with their projects. They’ve been in business for decades and actually carry parts that you can use. My wife didn’t understand why I hated going into Radio Shack until I took her to Tanner’s a few days ago. Now she understands.

This is a bag of goodies for the film scanner project; SPST N/O momentary switches, header strips, jumpers and a small speaker. What every Arduino-based project needs.


What does this have to do with photography?

I bought an air compressor last week. It was to replace a small nitrogen cylinder that I had purchased a month earlier. What does this have to do with pictures? Kind of a long story that I’ll start here and finish in later posts.

I shot 35mm color transparencies for most of my magazine assignments, stock shoots and personal trips overseas. In my case that means that I now have six 4-drawer file cabinets and about 10 bankers boxes full of sheeted up slides. It totals around 225,000 slides. Most of it should be discarded but getting to the keepers in a long editing process. Once I have the few thousand images that I’d like to keep they need to be scanned so I can get them into Lightroom and start using them. I have a pair of 35mm Nikon scanners but the scan times are very long so I decided to build a rapid scanner using a DSLR and hacked Kodak Ektagraphic projector.

Part of the design is to have high pressure clean, dry air dust off each slide in the projector gate and then keep low pressure air flowing across the film while the exposure is being made. I wanted to use compressed nitrogen but my usage was higher than planned and frequent trips to the welding supply shop for refills was going to be a lot of trouble. Enter the air compressor. If you’ve every owned one you know that most of them vibrate loudly enough to wake the dead in the next room. I shopped hard and found this one. It’s really pretty quiet and I’ll likely build a ventilated enclosure to quiet it down even more.