back to home

Use Your Hand-Held Scanner as a Digital Camera

If you have a scanner on your computer, it is not only limited to copying flat objects like photographs.

Surprisingly, by experiment I have found that it can be used to directly scan bulky objects like jewelry, toys, and even people. The methods do not give high quality images, but are ideal resolution for fast e-mail transmission.

Small objects such as an earring can be placed between a mouse mat and a sheet of glass or clear plastic and the scanner used in the normal way (see 20mm earring image).
My standard 100-400dpi scanner will keep objects in focus to about 100mm, so larger objects can be placed behind some glass and also be scanned in (see 400mm high teddy).
Finally for the largest objects it is necessary to put a reading lens between the glass and the subject so that the image is focused on the glass, then scan over the projected image (see me 4 metres away).
In the last two cases it is necessary to illuminate the object with strong light and turn the scanner up to max sensitivity. It may also be necessary to enhance the contrast and brightness with software. I can't see why the above wouldn't work with a flatbed scanner. Such images can of course be linked with a 'gif-builder' to make your own moving images, cartoons etc.(see below)

Empson Family Tree Logo
made with modelling clay by Jona
Please e-mail any comments, corrections, ideas, questions etc using the box below

created Apr 1999 last update 18 Sep 1999 back to home