Today, I decided to challenge myself and use some of the things I've learned on my journey. I decided to work with a bracelet that hasn't been sold as my challenge. During my early photo days, all I knew was Auto Mode, meaning I aimed and shot and the camera did all the work. Today, 99% of my photos are taken in some type of professional mode, so I'm left figuring out the settings that will make the best exposure.
One of the things that stood out immediately to me in this old photo is the yellow tint at the top of the image. Most likely it had something do with lighting, and the white background really isn't doing anything to expose the beautiful components in this piece (Kazuri and Hill Tribe Silver). After deciding to use a loose ceramic tile I had laying around, the first image looked like this...
|(f/3, 1/60 sec, ISO 200, WB cloudy)|
|(f/3, 1/60 sec, ISO 200 ,WB Tungsten)|
Eeeeeeekk is right! Defintely not the look I was going for nor expecting, since, I was using the light bulb setting for light bulb light. Tungsten light is a cooler light as you can see compared to cloudy, but I didn't want it that cool! Next, I thought I'd try my luck with Incandecent WB, not as blue, but definitely not natural looking and still a little scarey!
|(f/3, 1/60 sec, ISO 200, WB Incandecent)|
But I wasn't out of arsenal yet! There were a few more camera settings I could have tried, but enough was enough...I was going to have to preset my own White Balance, by taking a true reading of the light within the light box. If you have a DSLR, I'm fairly certain your camera has this option. You can find it by referencing your own camera manual. By taking a true reading of the light from within the box using the preset option, I was able to create a manual White Balance that mirrored the actual light I had reflecting inside the box and low and behold I got this....
|(f/3, 1/60 sec, ISO 200, WB-preset)|
Same bracelet, same light set up, slightly different composition but definitely a better exposure! The only thing that was still bothering me with this image, was that only the two bottom beads in front were clearly in focus. For this particular piece I was really trying to capture the entire bracelet as it WAS the focal point. With some adjustment to my apeture setting, taking it from f/3 (great depth of field) to f/20 (everything in focus), my exposure reading changed to 1/4 sec., then I filled my frame more with the bracelet, I was able to get the entire bracelet in focus, including the clasp using a tripod.
When photographing jewelry for online websites, it's not about the props, it's about capturing the gorgeous components and relating to your potential customers through your photos. I think this final image says buy me, buy me!!
|(f/20, 1/4 sec, ISO 200, WB Preset)|
I'm a long way from where I was one year ago.
Unveiling natural colors,