Back to Ganoksin | FAQ | Contact

Photography of Opal Jewlery


#1

Dear Jewelers, Interested others and Pros who know what I do not,

I am needing to photograph some opal jewelry. This is high grade
custom fabricated jewelry items. The problem? Well, I have used
advice from here to do a good job in photography of metal jewelry,
using diffuser applications. The dilemma is reducing the
reflections of metal while highlighting the color of opals.

Years ago, I associated with a person who used a view camera, long
exposures and pinpoint lighting to obtain remarkable results with
all sorts of objects. My dilemma is this is digital photography I am
doing. I simply cannot set up as for a view camera even with a
digital capable of bulb photos and long exposures.

So, from anyone who has faced and conquered this problem, how to
reduce the metal “splash and flash” while showing the best light on
the opal fire?

Any suggestion are greatly appreciated.
Thomas. Professional Jeweler, newbie photog.


#2
   So, from anyone who has faced and conquered this problem, how
to reduce the metal "splash and flash" while showing the best light
on the opal fire? 

As you say, this is digital. So cheat digitally. Set up your
diffusers and shoot for the best look of the metal. Then, without
changing the position of the piece or camera, remove the diffusers.
Shoot again. Use various spotlights on the opal to shoot several
versons of this shot with various lighting, trying to optimize the
opal appearance. Then export all shots into photoshop or another
similar photo editor. choose the shot in which the opal most
closely resembles it’s real self in normal viewing to the eye. Cut
and paste the image of that opal into the shot where you optimized the
metalwork. Edit the result as needed to clean up any visual clues
that this is cut and paste.

These days, virtually any image can be trusted only insofar as the
assumption that it’s been edited. So join the crowd. Remember the
aim is to get the piece not to just look it’s best, but also to get
the image to look most like the piece does. You don’t want to make
the opal look better than it really is. that would, of course, be
REALLY cheating…

Peter Rowe