Doing your own photography, even in the “point & shoot” digital age,
can still be a hassle for people who are not long time photography
junkies. I know a lot of artists who always do their own photography
and a lot who don’t want anything to do with it. Starting off cold
turkey, with no photo education of any kind is going to be time
consuming and ultimately frustrating for quite a while before you get
proficient at it.
If you do have the basics of photography down there is still a big
difference between landscapes and jewelry photography. Lighting
becomes an issue, as does focus, what camera to buy, and, most
frustrating of all for the high polish crowd, reflection control. And
then there is the post-processing issue. You will need to learn a
photo editing program. Adobe PhotoShop proper is not necessary but
PhotoShop Elements, PhotoImpact, or an equivalent will be necessary.
There are few digital images which can’t be much improved after
loading onto your computer. This is especially true for product
This issue is related to the “CAD at home or hire out” issue in that
there will be a learning curve that will be steeper for some than for
others in terms of getting a viable approach and adequate product. It
is going to cost continuing bucks to hire it done, but if you can use
the time more productively - and less stressfully - by turning the
photo work over to someone else then it is money well spent.
If you want to check the out the do-it-yourself approach I would
suggest finding someone nearby who does their own and asking if you
can watch once or twice. This will give you an idea of what’s
involved, what you’ll need, etc. In other words, a starting place.
On the issue of what camera to buy I’ll have to take exception with
Zygmund. With a little research you can find a 4-8MP point & shoot
camera which will be very affordable and more appropriate to your
task than the cumbersome and expensive SLR style digitals.
As for depth of field issues, small sensor, small focal length,
point and shoot cameras have as much depth of field as their bigger
brothers due to the smaller sensor and shorter focal lengths. If you
want corroboration - and the math - check out this link:
P&S cameras have more or less distortion in their macro capabilities
and checking out several at www.dpreview.com would be recommended. In
general if the macro function is accessed at the telephoto end of the
camera’s range you’ll have less perspective distortion than cameras
with wide angle macro. In most cases this is not a big issue, but for
a dead on shot of a very geometric piece you might find the straight
edges appearing curved in the photograph.
If you care to check out photos I’ve taken of my work with an older
Nikon CoolPix 4500 (4MP) then go to my much neglected website:
I’m late for work,
17 2nd St. East, Ste. 101
Kalispell, MT 59901