Photography is a beautiful art in itself where the viewer sees the subject of focus through the eyes of the photographer. The manner in which the photographer captures the essence of the photograph certainly affects the message that the photograph intends to convey,especially when it comes to jewelry photography. The aim of this article is to take you through the basics of how to capture beautiful photos of your jewelry products for any occasion. Whether you’re a complete beginner to jewelry photography or an expert, I certainly hope that you will find this article helpful.
Depending on the size and type of your jewelry business, jewelry photography can certainly prove to be a challenging task that requires significant levels of proficiency and professionalism. However, if you are willing to put in the time and effort to achieve beautiful jewelry photographs for your business, it is certainly achievable with the right information and lots of practice. There are some products which at first glance seem very easy to capture, which misleads most jewelry business owners into simply doing quick “point and shoot” photographs.
Hence, they end up capturing photographs of poor quality, which negatively affects the appeal and aesthetics of the jewelry products featured in photos. In terms of product photography, jewelry photography is definitely a skill that even many professional photographers struggle with.
To be a good jewelry photographer, one needs the ability to pay attention to minute details like lighting and how shiny a piece of jewelry is, among other things. Now, here’s how to successfully capture great jewelry photographs that will do your lovely jewelry pieces the justice they deserve.
- Pick the right camera and lens for the job.
The best jewelry photographs are taken when an image is captured from around 1 – 2 feet away from the product, which is fairly near to the product. Hence, getting the jewelry piece in focus in such close range might be difficult. However, a way to combat this difficulty is using a digital single-lens reflex camera (a DSLR), which allows exceptional control over the aperture setting. For best results, use a large aperture, like F11 or F14. However, DLSRs are not the end to end all cameras, and there are many great cameras out there today that are worth checking out.
- Prepare your jewelry for the shot.
Jewelry photography goes beyond aiming and pressing the camera shutter button (the “point and click” approach. Just as you need to select the right camera for the job, you also need to prepare your jewelry itself for the perfect shot. Don’t just place your sterling silver ring or necklace only to target it haphazardly and capture it with your camera.
Before you even pick the camera up, make sure to remove tags, stickers, unnecessary clutter and set the jewelry on a place with good lighting and a proper stand. It is essential to prepare your product very well before taking your snapshots for maximum appeal. A good trick to stop jewelry from discoloring during or before the photography process is placing the piece on a foamy surface to protect it from damage.
- Consistency with quality is key.
Clients do not joke around with quality, especially involving expensive jewelry pieces, and once they have made up their mind about a piece of jewelry, it is near impossible to convince them otherwise. hence, you only really get one “shot” (no pun intended) to convince them with your photo that your jewelry piece is worthy of their attention and time.
For example, you might be taking a picture of a wedding ring adorned with precious stones. To achieve the best possible result, make sure to use specific background lighting and stick to it. A common mistake is making use of a bright background in one shot and then switching to a dull background in another.
Such a sudden change in background lighting really tends to be jarring and ruin the aesthetic value of the wedding ring. Inconsistencies like these has proven to make products less appealing to the eye and thus cause your prospective customer to lose interest in your products immediately.
- Make your jewelry product the sole focus of the shot.
The small nature of most jewellery products often requires the photographer to place the piece on a stand to be visible and well lit. However, many jewelry photographers make the severe mistake of having the stand itself overshadow the product, hence causing the message of the photograph to be unclear and distracting to the viewer. Therefore, having white backgrounds and a diminutive stand for the jewelry photograph would be ideal as it will allow the customer to not receive conflicting messages and have a clear, appealing view of the product.
- Take Care of Annoying Reflections and Unnecessary Lightings
Nearly all jewelry has a reflective nature, which can complicate taking good jewelry photos due to the flashback it may cause on the photograph. So, to avoid flashback and hotspots as much as possible, avoid the use of flash photography as much as you can.
Hence, it is advisable that you try as much as you can to avoid using the flash on your camera. The use of flash can really destroy a beautiful image due to the unnatural and excessively harsh lightning it causes. Use soft, diffuse lighting that does not reflect harshly off the product and cause a feeling of hardness. Also, soft diffuse light tends to soothe and relax the viewer of the photograph, putting them in a more assured frame of mind of the quality of your jewelry pieces.
Many photographers will manage to take a somewhat decent photograph of jewelry, but to really stand out from your competition, you really must pay attention to quality. To make your jewelry as appealing as possible to your customers, make sure to follow our basic guidelines above.
Good luck with your jewelry photography!