Treasure Chest Thursday: US Mini-Flags

The collections people have tell a lot about who they are. One fascinating thing my husband has is a collection of mini-flags from various countries around the world. He also has several state flags. And finally, he has a series of flags that flew over the United States of America.

I personally really like the United States flag collection because it comes with a little booklet explaining when each flag flew and why. Now, these flags are on our kitchen sideboard so we can appreciate our nation’s heritage every day when we say morning prayers and the pledge to a larger American flag.

With kids around to tear things up, on purpose or by mistake, I felt I should photograph the collections before they were lost, damaged, or destroyed.

Photographing collections
Photographing collections

A few state flags were arranged in two rows. The flag on the back row was placed there because it kept pointing in that direction. After trying out several positions, this flag looked best in the back.

The photography set up involved a seamless backdrop and my table placed near my larger living room window. An extra piece of white muslin material was over a platform that created a second tier. The photograph was taken with the handy dandy tripod. The camera was set to AV priority mode. The lighting was simply the natural light in the mid-morning. The ISO was set to 100 with an f stop of 5. The metering mode was spot focus.

I think the photograph turned out well straight off the camera. No post-production work needed. What do you think?

Photographing memorabilia
Photographing collections

Here are the US flags that I mentioned before. I like the effect of placing the flags on the platform draped with a white cloth. I could have simply removed the second tier after taking the first photograph. However, this effect looks really nice, in my opinion.

A nit-picky person might suggest that the backdrop isn’t truly seamless. They would be absolutely right. However, I like the movement of the backdrop. I’ve seen several of my children’s photos with just a touch of drapery fold in the background. In some cases, it adds rather than detracts from the photograph. For some reason, I personally like the fact that these flags have a background that isn’t completely seamless. Perhaps with the less ‘professional’ look, the artifacts look like they belonged to someone rather than a picture that was taken from a sales catalog. Now that I write that though, the sentiment expresses exactly why I like the ‘non-perfect’ backdrop.

I’ll use these photos to tell the story of my husband’s flag collection which I believe began when he took a trip to the Nation’s Capital as a teenager.

Devon Noel Lee

Devon Noel Lee

Devon Noel Lee is passionate about capturing and preserving family stories so no one alive today has to be researched, or forgotten, tomorrow. She has authored 6 how-to books, a memoir, two published family history biographies, and over 60 family scrapbooks. She's an enthusiastic speaker who energizes, encourages, and educates at the same time.

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