Green Necklace

Ah, shoot!

by Lyn Foley on March 16, 2008

Taking photos of glass beads and jewelry is challenging, and members of “Flaming Hot”  are commenting on the process. Some of them  think, like I do, that the process can also be frustrating, time consuming, and down right irritating. Thank goodness  for my great little digital camera, a Sony5.1 mega pixel – it saves me from complete despair regarding taking bead jewelry photos. It allows me to take the photos again, and again, and again . If I had to use a regular camera, I’d be broke from the costs of film and developing all my mistakes and bad photos ( I take about 10 or 15 photos of every finished piece of jewelry, just to end up with one shot that is even half-way decent.)

I’ve tried all types of lighting: indoors, in natural light, indoors in a “photo-booth”,  photo booth indoors under florescent lights, indoors in a “cool” shadow, outdoors in shade, or outdoors in sun. Generally for background I use a photographers paper that graduates from white to almost black. Some time I use plain white typing paper, handmade  white Japanese paper, or lately, for my etsy shop photos, I’ve been using a handmade paper fan, with other pieces of torn paper for contrast. Since I keep a photographic record of every piece of jewelry I create, that’s a LOT of photos to take, and retake, and retake. Last year I made more than 600 pieces – with all the retakes, that equals approximately 6,000 photographs.

Here’s my latest necklace, made with my glass beads in an assortment of spring green hollows and disks. I took about 30 pictures of  it, and only 4 shots  made it to the “maybe I’ll keep this photo” group. I’ll  use the photos to list the necklace on etsy, but I don’t think any of the group are good enough to use as a slide for a juried show.


green necklace on white   #1:This photo of the necklace is OK – I’ll use it on my web site, or for a second etsy picture.

I took this one indoors in my “photo cube” set-up, on the graduated background paper.

green necklace  #2 This picture was taken outdoors in natural sunlight, on plain white paper. The colors are more accurate, but somehow the beads don’t sparkle, even in the sun.

green necklace

#3 Also taken outdoors in natural sunlight, again on plain white paper, Its a slightly different angle that I like better – but not really too different from #2 above. The bead colors are a little washed out.

green necklace   #4 I’d use this shot for etsy. I think its more interesting, and it shows off my sterling silver signature clasp too. I wouldn’t use this for a jury photo, the background isn’t plain enough for that.

The necklace looks much better in person.

Ah, shoot, I’m still learning how to take a jewelry photo.

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