Monday, February 23, 2009

Jewelry Photography; working out the bugs.........

Today I have been working on one of my old hobbies; Photography.

To say that it has not been going well is a bit of an understatement. Taking pictures of jewelry can be quite complicated! I have looked up every tutorial I could find on the subject. The majority agree on two points; use a tripod and a digital imaging program. If I were going to add anything to that I might say; experiment.

I have tried setting up a light box. This was terrible. All of my silver looked tarnished or blurry. I ultimately used natural light because the silver stayed truer to color. Next I tried different colored backgrounds. I started with white but found that there wasn't enough contrast between the background and some of the pieces. Black worked better for lighter colored pieces.

I really believe that the only benefit to using a digital slr is the ability to be able to dispose of the bad shots. If you have a digital 35mm you probably have more control over your contrast, which seemed to be the item I had to fiddle with most in editing.

Once I got to editing there were basically only two things that needed correcting; sharpness and contrast.

My photos were already sharp. I increased the sharpness as a way of bringing up additional highlights. Normally this would be a bad thing, causing specks to appear on the photo, and this may happen to yours. I just found that it worked beautifully for me.

I can not harp enough about contrast. I sometimes find that the stones don't look anything like they do in "real life" (as opposed to "photographic life"). If I adjust the contrast of the image I can correct this. It also helps your silver to shine.

I don't claim to be any kind of expert in this area, just someone in need of digital images. I have said it before, but it bears repeating: EXPERIMENT!

I have added a few of the shots to my blog and you can judge my results for yourselves.

Good luck with your own project.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Just the begining

While I have been a jewelry designer for quite some time; blogging is completely new to me. I feel very vulnerable putting down this type of information about myself. This is what my children do; not full grown women.

Currently we find our economy in the crapper. Now, if you have ever tried to sustain a small business, you know that these are, "the best of times" and the "worst of times". ("HOW CAN SHE SAY THAT?" you ask.) They are the worst, because as a small business owner, you can never count on a specific income. You buy your materials, produce your item and get it to the public. With jewelry this is a hit or miss proposition. One week you are everyone's darling and the next, you cant sell a thing! If, during a recession, you are able to sell anything; well "BONUS", you can buy more supplies and start the whole process over! But, a recession can also be the "best of times"!

I am using this time to learn new techniques and venture into a completely new areas. I also intend to get my business plan together and this "blog" is a part of that. I don't want to spend the rest of my life, selling jewelry to my tiny corner of the world. This blog will allow me to go WORLDWIDE!