Monday, March 9, 2015

Photography of Jewelry

Getting quality photos of my jewelry has always been an interesting challenge. I remember being so excited a few years ago when I constructed my DIY light tent, set up some lamps, and experimented with my little point-and-shoot digital camera. Then ipad entered my life, and I discovered that it took better photos and eliminated the need for transferring photo files to my laptop via memory card readers. Now I can take a photo, edit it, post it, and blog about it all on my ipad. 

One thing I know for sure is that natural light is best. My south facing window in the morning light on a bright day is perfect. 

Photo quality and engaging staging, however, remain the key factor in posting work on-line. I spend significant time looking at jewelry photos on blogs and in webstores, and I really admire the way many artists stage their photos. Photos are a perfect way of branding a business. There are certain artists I recognize immediately upon viewing a photograph - an identifiable background or a consistent prop brands them. I've noticed a variety of tile backgrounds, vintage books, worn wood, scrapbook papers, and many other props. 

Today I experimented with props in my photos. I live on an ocean beach, so rocks, shells, and driftwood pieces seem logical. I have thousands of these things hanging around the house. Do these represent my brand? I'm not sure. They are, however, props I could use consistently to create recognizable style. I want to make sure the props don't detract from the jewelry but just highlight it. 


I just finished a custom order for a wedding set in rose quartz and silver. These turned out so lovely and sweet. Here are some photos I took this morning using props. Unfortunately, it was pretty overcast and gray today, so I had to edit to brighten them a bit. 

I liked draping the bracelet on that piece of driftwood. Soft gemstones on hard, rough wood is a nice contrast, I think.

Maybe the earrings should have been on a dark background. 
Maybe the dark grooves on the shell are visually distracting. 

These are things to consider and play with in future photographs. I welcome any advice readers might have (if I even have any readers). Feel free to comment!

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