Photographing Inside the Phillips

When photographing works of art inside The Phillips Collection, we kindly ask that you disable the flash feature on your camera. On most cameras, the button bares a symbol of a lightening bolt. Please check with the manufacturer of your particular camera on disabling the flash feature.

By disabling the flash, you’re helping us to preserve the masterpieces within the Collection.  In order to achieve the best images possible, you may have to increase the ISO setting of the camera to compensate for the lack of flash.  Higher ISO settings capture more detail in low light situations, but may also introduce graininess.

Left, photo taken with auto ISO settings. Right, photo taken with ISO 100.

Left, photo taken with ISO 200 setting. Right, photo taken with ISO 800 setting.

Another setting to check is white balance, which accounts for the type of lighting in your scene. This setting allows for accurate color reproduction so that images aren’t too warm (red toned) or cool (blue toned). You can spot these differences in the above photos as well.

I find it’s best to take a few test shots to check for color accuracy. Use the highest ISO setting you can without distorting  the image.

The images above were captured using a standard 5MP cell phone camera.  It’s pretty surprising the amount of control you have over image settings in a cell phone today.

Happy photographing, and enjoy the Collection!

(Photographs above capture stills from choreographer Christopher Wheeldon’s Swan Lake featured in the Degas’s Dancers at the Barre exhibition.)

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