Here at Creative Forge, we print for a lot of artists who produce their work in physical media.  Scanning and photographing your work is a common way artists convert their work to a digital format for print, but there is sometimes a problem we run into from photographing.

What is the Moire Effect?

The dreaded Moiré effect is a photography phenomenon that often occurs with photos containing repeated patterns and textures e.g. the lines on the shirt in the photo below or the texture of an artwork canvas. These rainbow lines will show up on your artwork when its printed if not dealt with. In this blog post, we will look into a few ways you can avoid this unwelcome effect so that your artwork will look its best.

1. Check your photo preview before taking the shot

Simply look at your camera’s LCD screen or your phone’s screen and make sure you can’t see any unwanted rainbow lines before taking the shot. If you can’t seem to get rid of the lines, try the options below.

2. Adjust the distance between your camera and artwork

Try moving your camera closer to the artwork. If this fails, try the opposite and move the camera further away from the artwork.

3. Try a different environment

Lighting plays quite a big role in the moiré effect, so there’s a good chance you can simply move to a different place for your shot. We’ve found that natural lighting helps with reducing the moiré effect, which is great because we recommend getting your shots in natural light regardless for a better result.

4. Scan your artwork instead

Scanning your artwork will always give you better results than a photo anyway, but it will also reduce the possibility of the moiré effect. We offer artwork scanning for a low fee here at Creative Forge (contact us to arrange).

5. Remove it in Photoshop or Lightroom

For those with an Adobe Photoshop or Lightroom subscription, there are very some ways to remove the effect after you’ve already took your shot. We’ve linked two simple to follow tutorials below: 

https://www.youtube.com/embed/c11lSzKdTCk

https://www.youtube.com/embed/QzA3gfOevgY

To conclude

The moiré effect is certainly an annoying one for our artists, and we would hate to see it ruining your artwork. Hopefully this blog helped you deal with this issue and got your beautiful artwork looking its absolute best!

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