Anyone working in product photography will understand that each type of product has specific requirements, difficulties and styles. When we talk about jewellery photography, we have to add in the issue of working with small, intricate but highly detailed products and this adds another layer of complexity.
We’ve put together some helpful information for those working with jewellery photography and in particular models wearing the items.
Focus on the jewellery
This may seem like an obvious one but all too often we see images where your focus gets drawn away from the product to the model or background. If this happens with jewellery then it very quickly gets lost and you don’t want this to happen.
A helpful way to think about this is that in jewellery photography, the model is the ‘prop’, almost used differently to other aspects of product photography. This can be difficult to do but with effective communication, guidance and technical set up, you can ensure that the customer’s eye is drawn to the jewellery on show.
When you are shooting jewellery without a model, you have the ability to place the product in a lightbox or traditional packshot studio set up. This means you have to get creative and think more carefully about how to set up the studio to get the right lighting and ultimately, the right shot for your customers.
You may need to set up a raft of reflectors, umbrellas, sheets and other materials to create a huge lightbox. You will also need to content with the fact that the model will likely move and this may change the reflections on the jewellery, whether its the gemstones or metallic surfaces.
With plenty of planning and testing, you will be able to get a set up that compliments both the model and item of jewellery, allowing you to create fantastic images that make the jewellery jump out of the page.
Set the tone
As you’ve chosen to use a model for your jewellery photography, it is important to work together to set the tone and create a mood that reflects your product. It might be an elegant piece of jewellery from a brand that portrays romance and sophistication.
You may find that using minimal props or no visible clothing really helps draw the eye to the model’s emotion and the tone of the product. It may be that some shadow or interesting lighting effects can help change the tone to suit each individual product if you’re shooting a range of jewellery.
Be careful with the editing
Our final piece of advice is to be controlled with the editing of your images and only retouch where it is required or makes a real difference. You probably won’t have the time or resources of major studios and even then, taking the time to perfect their hair and makeup before the shoot can offer better images.
This is all about experimentation and trying out the editing software that works for you and your budget. There are some fantastic tools out there but just don’t be too quick to mess around with your photos.