MeHere's blog

Scanners: The Forgotten Peripheral

posted by MeHere, Mar 22, 2007 1:29 PM — 18 comments

The humble scanner never seems to get a mention in 'What Camera Is That?' in this day and age, (perhaps if it were less humble and set about promoting itself a bit it would), but nevertheless, the fact remains that its probably The best tool for taking high-res, perfectly lit images with a depth of feild no greater that 1mm. Whosoever invents a portable one that takes landscapes will make a killing.

To further the noble cause of the Forgotten Peripheral, I have undertaken the roll of PR manager to scanners everywhere. Let me share with you a list of 13 Fun Things To Do With Your Scanner And You.

* Scan paper: most people are familiar with this technique, rare problems are arise due to a recurring ID-10t error which can be treated.

* Scan something flat: take one flat object, place a sheet or 3 of dull white boring monotonous paper on the side furtherest from the transparent part of the scanner (the arrangement of paper is important), close the lid and hit go.

* Make something flat: (use whatever methods you must) then scan it with the above procedure.

Well that’s the basics covered. When you think you've mastered those, continue on to the intermediate section below...

*Document your wardrobe: Unless your name is Barb and you've just dumped Ken for Blaine, you probably won’t fit an entire article of clothing on the scanner, (and even if you can you probably shouldn't), but the slightly more rubenesque amongst us can try for tremendously detailed textures of tempting textiles.

*Play with shiny things: Actually, they're one of the few things that probably won't scan nicely due to their reflectiveness, but who am I to disappoint your inner magpie?

*Plant scans: you may need a pair of earmuffs to dull the sounds of the grasses' screaming, but if your soul is callous and hardened like mine; you won't have a qualm ripping innocent vegetation out by the roots and arranging it artfully on your scanner.

* Play with your food: The sloppier the better, assuming that the scanner belongs to someone else. Failing that you could always clean it afterwards.

* Scan diamond saws: Great if you want to scratch the scanners glass surface into unuseableness. So perhaps avoiding sharp or rough materials is sound advice, (so speaks the sad voice of experience).

* Collages: Who says clag glue, mushed up bits of crepe paper with bleeding colour and crudely photocopied outlines are just for kids! Actually, they probably are, but there's plenty of other ways to make collages.

* Make EVERYTHING huge and scary: 300dpi is for cissies. Items placed on your scanner can and should be brought closer than they appear. Great for seeing the dust on woven materials.

Be sure that you understand and can apply all the above techniques before attempting any of the projects listed in the advanced section below...

* Audit your dustmites: Don't let the little buggers freeload, the only sure fire way to be rid of them is:
a. Locate them by sticking the habituated portion of bed linen on the scanner and scanning at high res
b. Take a census (This may take some time, but persevere)
c. Get some minute tax forms printed on microfilm, and give them to the little mites/plebs, politely informing them that should they wish to continue to live in and use the facilities provided by the Democratic Dictatorship Of The People's Pillowcase they mush contribute 24% of their annual income to the government.
d. Watch them emigrate to your neighbours.

* Photograph infinity: A remarkably simple affair, merely prop the scanner up to the computer screen while it runs, (be sure to hold it steady so the image doesn't blur). Don't come crying to me if you fall into a hole in the space-time continuum though.

* Paparazzi photography: Lure a well-known celebrity into you home or office and innocently ask them if they can see the bit of dirt on the glass surface of that there scanner. Quickly scan them unawares (hi res is great for this!) and mail to your local womens’ magazine for wads of cash.

Images Used (Both scans, of course):
Brown paper and thread

Some other scans (For the truely foolhardy who are still reading, and havent yet cottoned onto the fact that these links constitute very thinly veiled shameless plugging):
Murdering the plants
More Paper

Comments | RSS

1. posted by hcmlopes, Mar 28, 2007 2:02 AM

I have to say this is a great tutorial and we need more and more creative people like you...GJ

2. posted by Tim_atmei, Mar 29, 2007 2:26 AM

A very entertaining read, and a great new idea for creative pictures.

3. posted by da-vinci, Mar 29, 2007 3:38 AM

special thnx for this lesson about scanner :)

4. posted by teapotpot, Mar 29, 2007 9:33 AM

You are hilarious!

5. posted by MeHere, Mar 29, 2007 2:24 PM

Going to post a comment on me own blog beacause its late and I can't figure out how to edit the post without loosing the comments...

Some more links so some of my scanned pictures (probably better the the ones in the post, I really shouldn't post things late at night...)

6. posted by VinnyPrime, Mar 31, 2007 7:29 PM

haha, hilarious!

7. posted by charcoa1, Apr 25, 2007 3:08 AM

Thanks for the advice. I'm going to try that with my next spaghetti bolognaise. Maybe glad wrap the scanner.

Hey I've got a backlight for transparencies. Oh man the options are getting exciting. Need more glad wrap. See ya.

8. posted by csp, May 11, 2007 9:09 AM

Scanning is cool. This one of mine was scanned:

9. posted by ashieebo, Jun 20, 2007 1:14 AM

Haha, I enjoyed read your tut! You are very upbeat, haha!! Awesome ideas, loved it!

10. posted by battelaxe, Jun 23, 2007 7:49 PM

brilliant, doing the cat tomorrow ;-)... hold still feline!

11. posted by my_key, Jun 28, 2007 8:54 PM

@battelaxe: make sure you remember tip number 3 :)

12. posted by a_kartha, Jul 15, 2007 12:03 PM

Gawr! Sarah, love the way you write. Kept grinning throughout the read.

Shall go cannibalize various household items and subject them to the harsh white light soon.


13. posted by oliverclar, Aug 6, 2007 12:22 PM

Great tutorial!! Glad you shared it with us :D

14. posted by sagriffith, Aug 10, 2007 10:33 AM

Very funny. Thanks for this.

Scanning all that lovely hand-made paper you can't run through a printer can be great too.

15. posted by pepeok, Sep 28, 2007 5:56 PM

Good mehere ˇ

16. posted by egoshibil, Sep 30, 2008 5:54 AM


17. posted by jaylopez, Nov 5, 2008 8:29 AM

Great blog. Thanks for sharing!

I found similar cool artwork on created out of this process Scanography is what you guys call this art i guess. hy

18. posted by Recliners, Jun 21, 2013 4:19 PM

Hi! Your pictures are great.

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