A 4 point lighting system at a low angle of incidence reduces glare and provides even illumination. While most works look great in this lighting, some artwork shows glare at every angle of incidence. These works benefit from polarization. Here are some samples showing the unpolarized version on the left and the polarized version on the right. Please click on these and view them at 1:1 to fully appreciate the differences.

From our experience, polarization is absolutely necessary and we’ve developed a calibration technique for it that ensures precise tonal reproduction. Because content like naked wood and metallic paints must be documented without polarization (or even better, with minimal polarization) we recommend documenting artwork both with full polarization and with minimal polarization. The differences can be informative and , in our option, both are superior than those made with no polarization.