I’d been following the digital camera discussion with great interest,
and just got a Nikon 880 for Christmas. I’ve spent this week trying it
out taking jewelry photographs, and I thought the group might be
interested in what I’ve found out. I took a 13" cubical box of heavy
cardboard, cut off one end and replaced the top and opposing sides
with white translucent plastic. I lit the top with a photoflood light
in a clip-on reflector and the two sides with my studio lights,
incandescent swing arm lamps. Those were the lights I happened to
have. I lined the inside of the box with a piece of heavy white paper,
curving up from front to back. With the camera on a tripod, I took
some test shots. The resolution was fabulous, but the lighting was
very yellow, as I had expected. The whole thing showed great promise,
but I was resigned to buying new lights.
Then I remembered some mention in the manual of setting white points.
When I looked it up, it proved to be the solution to the color
problems. You can set the white point in the camera with the lights
you have, and save that group of settings so you can use it next time
you take jewelry pictures. What a wonderful idea. The pictures are a
tad dark, but when I lighten them a bit the color balance is perfect.
Now I have more work to do on props and such, and getting the right
angle to photograph things, but now I know the camera will do its
part. So far I’m very happy with my choice of the Nikon 880. We wanted
a camera that would do everything, from family snaps to closeup
jewelry pictures. Although I now see why the 990 has the swivel mount-
very handy on the tripod- I like the small size and light weight of
And at this point it’s so wonderful not to have to finish and develop
a whole roll to find out how I need to improve something.