Your collection may house the most stunning pieces but it’s all for naught if your presentation is not tantalizing enough to seduce your buyer. From lighting to retouching images of your jewellery, here are some tips to make your pieces shine.
Keep it clean
We don’t give this first step much thought but it really is the most crucial one. There’s spots of grease, dirt and other little dust particles on your pieces that you can’t see with the naked eye but if these unpolished or spotty pieces get photographed which then get blown up, you will see that stain. Use cotton gloves to wipe down your pieces to remove dust. It’s a good idea to keep the gloves on so that every time you handle your pieces, especially before a photo shoot, you won’t leave your fingerprints all over them.
Light it up
Speaking of photo shoots, since pieces like gems have highly reflective surfaces, taking photographs- for a brochure or for your website- takes time, skill and patience. For instance, gems like emeralds look a lot like tourmaline when the components in the stone are exposed to chromium in camera film. A big concern that online shoppers have now is that what they buy might not look like what was advertised in the first place. Which is why professional product photography is so crucial-especially when it comes to big-ticket items like jewellery.
The easiest and fuss-free way to go is to get that natural light and use it for an outdoor shoot. Professional photographers will tell you that the two best times to photograph are during the first hour of light after sunrise and the last hour of light before sunset. During this time, the sun is positioned low which creates a diffused light- ideal for those dreamy and elegant jewellery shots.
Backlighting is the process of lighting your jewelry from behind which works especially well for glass-like jewelry pieces. The clarity and shape of the piece is enhanced with a backlight. If you need a three dimensional effect for your product, try a side light to perk up the piece.
Give it your best shot
Both traditional DSLR cameras and smartphones can be used to take some great shots for a variety of media- from print brochures to e-commerce sites to trade magazines. And most important, your social media sites. The most essential tools needed before you start shooting are:
- A tripod to keep your camera steady, to avoid blurry images
- A flat surface like a desk to have your products and your camera on the same level if you need to have it like that
- Light Source: light box or tent
- Boards or fabric to act as reflectors and diffuser panels
- Other special props you might need for social media photography
- Prop wise, though we love those little succulents in those adorable little pots, the best way to feature a piece of jewelry in all its sheen and glamour is to have it stand alone and not have much clutter around it. Less is more when it comes to props.
For smartphones, these useful tips will go a long way
- A tripod or any equipment used to stabilize your phone
- Turn your flash off. Your phone camera flash will only produce a glare which is a strict no-no.
- Check your device’s zoom capability. Always shoot 1 to 2m away from the jewelry and make a note of your camera’s aperture settings.
- Don’t forget to use a good clip-on macro lens.
And if all this is too much for you, hire a professional photographer. It’s probably one of the best decisions you’ll make for your business.
Retouch and refresh:
Despite following all of the above tips, you may still see flaws in your photos but don’t break a sweat. Fix it in post! Post production is a detailed process where you can further enhance your image or make corrections- from eliminating blemishes to getting the right alignment to correcting the lighting and getting rid of unwanted shadows, you can get it all done with an editing software- most designers still swear by Photoshop which is easy to learn.
Jewellery photography can be tricky and time consuming. But in times like now when online shopping is oh-so popular and competition is fierce, presentation is everything. Take some time out to follow these simple tips and tricks and put your best, most sparkly foot forward.
Some of the most fabulous brands in the country will be showcasing their collections at CJ Expos this year. We will also be holding informative workshops and networking sessions with experts from the industry. This is your chance to feature your wares alongside the best of the best in the industry.
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