HOW TO: Photograph Jewellery- Equipment
Jewellery photography can be a challenging task, but with the right equipment, lighting, and tips, anyone can create stunning images. If you're looking to get started or improve in this field, here are some helpful tips for taking great jewellery photographs.
Having the right equipment is essential when it comes to photographing jewellery. Here are the key pieces of equipment you need to get started:
- A good camera: DSLR or mirrorless cameras with interchangeable lenses are ideal for jewellery photography as they offer good image quality. Phone cameras may be adequate for large, signature pieces.
- A tripod or phone stand: A good tripod will help you stabilise your camera and eliminate shake while taking pictures, for crisper images.
- Lighting equipment: Lighting is critical in jewellery photography, and although a set of lights designed for photography can help create the perfect shot they are not always essential. A combination of natural and LED lights will work.
- Natural light: a window out of the sun, next to a white wall is always a great way to get even lighting. The bigger the window the better.
- Lighting angle: for a single light set up, place the light at 45 degrees to the scene. Add additional lights as required, paying attention to where you want to reduce shadows. A very soft light, shone from the front of the scene can be great for picking up sparkle in gems, but be careful that you don't get hot spots which are too bright.
- Use diffused light: Using soft, diffused light can help soften shadows and create a smooth, even light source. A cone diffuser is an absolute game changer in eliminating harsh transitions and creating a whiter, softer look.
- A backdrop: A neutral or contrasting coloured background can help jewellery stand out in photographs.
- Props: With small jewellery pieces finding the right prop can be tricky. You do not want your item to be overwhelmed by the prop. Choose small props to support your piece or have larger ones at the edge of the scene, creating a frame effect. Get creative with draping chains over undulating props and using mirrors or a clear acrylic sheet to create a reflection and double the visual impact.