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caroleallen
25-03-2015, 06:44 AM
Does anyone have one of these or know anything about this sort of lighting system? http://www.cooksongold.com/Jewellery-Tools/Jewellery-Photography-Light-Box---Small-prcode-997-1203

I'm going to have a completely new all singing, all dancing website and of course, my photography is letting me down. I've found a good photographer (I think) who is going to do some lifestyle type test shots for me but the cost for a day's shoot is eye watering. I'm thinking that I may get her to do the main images for each item and take the rest myself.

I'm a hopeless photographer, so need all the help I can get. I take all my photos using the automatic macro setting, which I know isn't helping. Everything has to be lifestyle and I'm just using some small coloured wooden bricks as props. I'm not sure whether those light boxes are designed for such images.

Goldsmith
25-03-2015, 07:39 AM
May I ask what camera you use Carole? I must admit that I have never used a light box so I cannot help you there, I take all of my photos using white and coloured cards to direct the light. If I was suggesting a decent small reasonably cheap camera I would suggest taking a look at the Panasonic Lumix FZ200, I use an older Lumix FZ45, both cameras have a Leica lens.

I took this photo of a butterfly sitting on a Magnolia bloom on Monday using my Lumix FZ45, not jewellery but it gives an idea of the quality of the Leica lens.

7535


James

Melanie
25-03-2015, 07:53 AM
we have one of these and love it. Prob not as good as having a pro photographer but then couldn't afford the time or money that that would take! We pop small props in ours for lifestyle photos and it works fine :) We also use the macro setting on our camera too (although this is more hubby's department than mine!).

caroleallen
25-03-2015, 10:02 AM
That's a lovely image James and I always admire your photography. I have a Canon DSLR and I can't afford anything different at the moment. I don't think it's the camera - it's the person using it!

Thanks Melanie, that's really useful information.

After I posted this, I had a look around and found that Andrew Berry has done a video on that lightbox. I'm very tempted.

What with the new website, new photography, business advisor, new display for shows, that will wipe out all my profit for this year. Ah well, you have to speculate to accumulate!

Lucie
25-03-2015, 10:08 AM
Just replied to this once & deleted it (Doh!)

I bought one of these after going through 4 professional photographers and being really disappointed with the results (and the amount of wasted money).
I love the convenience, as I can take it off the shelf & it's good to go.

I bought this and a Nikon 3200. I found a tripod and set of grey cards (Amazon) also helped a lot.

I still do have to edit everything in GIMP, so it doesn't take all of the work away, but definitely the best photographs I've ever taken (considering how utterly rubbish I am with a camera) ;)

medusa
25-03-2015, 10:42 AM
I'm going to have a completely new all singing, all dancing website and of course, my photography is letting me down. I've found a good photographer (I think) who is going to do some lifestyle type test shots for me but the cost for a day's shoot is eye watering.

Can I make a suggestion? I know you have at least one groovy young woman working with you (she's a friend of my youngest) who has a number of friends who are keen instagram-ers. Lots of them produce really good images (I know what you mean about cost of 'lifestyle' shoots plus they often look boring). A barter system might get you better and more interesting shots which are genuine lifestyle images. Plus the exposure via social media could be priceless. One thing I've noticed is that the fashion and design photography that really stands out is in that grain. It might be worth thinking about.

CJ57
25-03-2015, 11:03 AM
I think Tabby has one of those Carole. Personally I'd go with the Lumix which would cost the same. I have one but not the same number as mentioned and we take amazing photos of jewellery and wildlife with mine. You can then tweak it on the computer if necessary.

Goldsmith
25-03-2015, 12:49 PM
Have you seen the light boxes on Amazon Carole? with this one you could photograph necklaces on a display necklace bust unit. http://www.amazon.co.uk/SANOTO-Professional-Portable-Photography-Shooting/dp/B00B533UF8/ref=pd_sim_sbs_ph_1?ie=UTF8&refRID=1VBENSDTJEYMSRK62SX4 also it's half the cost of the one you mentioned.

James

caroleallen
25-03-2015, 01:01 PM
You're all amazing. Thanks for the replies.

Lucie (or is it Sophia?) and Caroline your photos are fab.

James, those light boxes look good, thanks.

Liz, I didn't know you knew the lovely Caroline, though I did wonder. She's off travelling I think, unless she's back now. It's a good idea though.

Mmm, lots to think about.

Lucie
25-03-2015, 01:27 PM
It's Lucie lol. :)
Sophia & Alexander my eldest 2 little ones - Luckily, I named the business before babies 3 and 4 came along or the domain name would be ridiculous! ;)
Thank you for your lovely comment. Good luck with the website. x

pearlescence
25-03-2015, 04:40 PM
Spend time taking hundreds of photos of the same item arranged differently, with different lighting and playing around with camera settings (remember to make notes on what you change as you go along) and then spend another day playing around with whatever image manipulation program you have. jewellery photography is a learning curve
I had some professional stuff done and it was unusable and a complete waste of time and money

Tabby66
26-03-2015, 06:51 AM
Caroline's right, I have one of those Carole. It's fab, best pictures I've taken myself. The only thing my husband has suggested is that I should have gone for a larger model to accommodate props, etc.... I would highly recommend it (I have a Lumix).

These were all taken using it.

Petal
26-03-2015, 07:34 AM
I'm reading this thread with interest too... Which Lumix do you have Jill?

Those are fab photos !!!

Lucie
26-03-2015, 09:02 AM
I bought the biggest one, as I needed to photograph sculptures too, but I've found the size comes in very handy for jewellery.
It makes it very easy to add backgrounds and props. It also makes it easier to position / angle the camera :)

I found that a cheap set of grey cards helps the camera to pick the jewellery out from the background even more. x

Dennis
26-03-2015, 09:10 AM
Have you seen the light boxes on Amazon Carole? with this one you could photograph necklaces on a display necklace bust unit. http://www.amazon.co.uk/SANOTO-Professional-Portable-Photography-Shooting/dp/B00B533UF8/ref=pd_sim_sbs_ph_1?ie=UTF8&refRID=1VBENSDTJEYMSRK62SX4 also it's half the cost of the one you mentioned.James

Yes that is a good size. As James has said, the problem with smaller cubes is that they limit your camera angle when using display stands. I have a 40x40cm cube and every now and then I am too crampted. Dennis.

ShinyLauren
26-03-2015, 11:03 AM
Looking forward to seeing all the new stuff Carole! I need to get one of those lightboxes as well, and need to reshoot on white. I've not got a clue how to go about doing the dreaded lifestyle shots :(

CJ57
26-03-2015, 11:19 AM
My Lumix is a DMC - G3 but they seem to bring out a new one every few months. My cousin arrived with the latest wee one the other day and the clarity of the pictures was astounding but the camera was small and quite fiddly.
I don't know if my photos are website quality though but I can get the effect I want by editing on the laptop

medusa
26-03-2015, 03:51 PM
Liz, I didn't know you knew the lovely Caroline, though I did wonder. She's off travelling I think, unless she's back now. It's a good idea though.

.

My youngest and her are really good friends. They used to do a very funny (but slightly disturbing) double act when they were younger. We often wondered if they'd be the next French and Saunders (but with more talent, obvs). And yes, off travelling now.

mizgeorge
26-03-2015, 04:16 PM
This is all not good. Now I really, really want a lightbox. I hate taking pictures with a passion, and anything that could make life easier has to be a good thing. I want a new camera too, of course...

caroleallen
26-03-2015, 04:37 PM
Sorry George! I am having one - I've decided!

Tabby66
26-03-2015, 06:45 PM
Sorry George,....but it's a good buy!! Mine wasn't the smallest, but I definitely should have gone bigger!!

Jules,.....it turns out it's a Canon (my previous camera was a Lumix, had this one 2 years and had that one ages, so probably considered antique now!!), those were taken with a Canon SX500 IS. Hope that helps :)

Moon Willow
27-03-2015, 09:25 AM
Photography has always been one of my passions, I even put it before jewellery! I had a dark room and spent hours developing and printing my 35mm pictures, and I still own 2 light boxes which were used to look at my negatives and transparencies.
I always inform folks when they tried to equate my camera to a satisfying image that it is only part camera and part individual.
The bottom line to taking good pictures is no different to making fine jewellery "Practice " experiment with light both natural and artificial, take notes, draw diagrams of your light source in comparison to your piece that you're photographing.
Below are 2 pictures, the beaded "Dragons Eye" (made by my partner) was taken with my Canon 450d zoom lens, (I never use macro) and the one on the right is taken on my Samsung pad at work with natural light.
The object of taking a photograph can differ from let's say, the Dragons Eye will be put on the Web site for sale and the "ER" will be used for a reference (how it is made and what fittings are used.
.75467550
Carlton

caroleallen
27-03-2015, 12:31 PM
Thank you Carlton. Both are nice and clear.

The trend now though is definitely for "lifestyle" shots. I think the image is probably more important than the actual work. There are some large jewellery companies I could name (but won't), whose actual jewellery is very ordinary but the lifestyle images are amazing, so the jewellery sells. They also have beautiful websites which are SEO'd within an inch of their lives.

Goldsmith
27-03-2015, 12:55 PM
Forgive my ignorance but what is a "lifestyle" shot?

James

Moon Willow
27-03-2015, 01:10 PM
Thank you Carlton. Both are nice and clear.

The trend now though is definitely for "lifestyle" shots. I think the image is probably more important than the actual work. There are some large jewellery companies I could name (but won't), whose actual jewellery is very ordinary but the lifestyle images are amazing, so the jewellery sells. They also have beautiful websites which are SEO'd within an inch of their lives.

It's strange how some folks see things, a necklace around a celebrity's neck might be a sort after piece of jewellery although they can't really see it, and that brings us back to the question "What is a acceptable picture"
A few months ago I put a photo of a copper and silver dragon bangle on the forum which you could see what it was, I then said the texturing was made with a letter "S" punch so folks zoomed in and could clearly see what I meant, this is why I don't use macro, I leave it up to the viewer.
Carlton

caroleallen
27-03-2015, 01:17 PM
7555

This is a lifestyle shot. Not a good one, which is why I need help but you get the idea. Instead of the piece of jewellery being shot on a flat surface, it has to be staged with some props to make the image more interesting. Although I used to think that a lovely piece of jewellery shouldn't be upstaged by props, I now realise that people want the picture to tell a story.

Goldsmith
27-03-2015, 01:37 PM
Thank you Carole. I am not in tune with modern language terms. I look forward to seeing your new photos when you get your lightbox. I am living in the dark ages with a garage full of old style photo equipment, studio flash lights and backdrops along with various film cameras and tripods.

James

caroleallen
27-03-2015, 04:16 PM
Not dark ages James. Those things are still relevant and I think my photographer will use studio flash lights etc. Your photos are amazingly good and your pictures in the park are actually lifestyle shots. Just put a ring in the foreground and you're there!

Petal
27-03-2015, 05:23 PM
I've been researching lots of photos online lately, as I'm in the process of going online and the one thing that doesn't seem to be prevalent on a lot of sites is scale, so you can see the size of the jewellery photographed.

Gemsetterchris
28-03-2015, 02:07 PM
There's an interesting thread on engraverscafe on "light painting", It's basically taking a couple long exposure pictures in the dark & running a light source over the subject briefly from different angles.
Then the 2 or 3 pictures are combined in Photoshop.
Quite abit of faffing about but depends if your interested in the possibilities you can't otherwise get.

medusa
29-03-2015, 03:39 PM
7555

This is a lifestyle shot. Not a good one, which is why I need help but you get the idea. Instead of the piece of jewellery being shot on a flat surface, it has to be staged with some props to make the image more interesting. Although I used to think that a lovely piece of jewellery shouldn't be upstaged by props, I now realise that people want the picture to tell a story.

uh, I thought a lifestyle shot was one which showed the jewellery being worn, hence my instagram suggestion. I'm torn about the use of props for jewellery shots as well. partly I think it can detract from the design, but I guess it can make the item look more interesting. I recall a pic James put up ages ago of his daughter wearing a load of his rings. That is what I thought would be a lifestyle shot. You have the jewellery in context. I think that works better for me than jewellery in isolation but on a fancy background.

trialuser
29-03-2015, 07:16 PM
Yes, I thought it was a photo of an attractive, happy, slim, wealthy person wearing the jewellery in a beautiful location.
It means that if you buy it, you will be all of those things.
They annoy me (easily done), as you usually can't get a decent impression of the item.

caroleallen
29-03-2015, 07:30 PM
I shall be having to have shots of the jewellery being worn as well but as yet I don't have a model. My daughter's never around long enough to have a photo shoot. She hates it anyway and although she is rather lovely (unbiased opinion!) she always looks self conscious when posing for a photo.

I asked a friend of mine to ask around on a modelling Facebook page and I got a very mixed bag of replies. Some were obviously "glamour" models, some were positively plain and they were in all shapes and sizes plus a variety of hourly rates from 15 to 60. Needless to say, the one I liked best was the most expensive. I'll probably ask a friend of mine's daughter who is very beautiful. Not sure when Caroline's back as she'd have been perfect. It's all some way off though, so I'm not worrying about it at the moment.

All this is being done because Notonthehighstreet say my photography's not good enough for them now and I have to up my game if I want to get my stuff promoted. Fingers crossed that it all works out.

Tabby66
29-03-2015, 08:06 PM
Jewelstreet has similar demands Carole.....

caroleallen
29-03-2015, 09:28 PM
Ooh are you with Jewelstreet? Once I have my new images, I'll be with them too.

Gemsetterchris
30-03-2015, 11:05 AM
I'd think a glamour model might be a tad distracting, you want people focusing on your jewels not hot totty.
Then again, if your wanting an army of male customers/followers that'll do the trick.

Tabby66
30-03-2015, 06:33 PM
Ooh are you with Jewelstreet? Once I have my new images, I'll be with them too.

Yes, since I joined, they changed the image requirements, I'm in the process of updating my piccies!!

ShinyLauren
31-03-2015, 07:08 AM
I want to apply to Jewelstreet, but having read their image guidelines I need to reshoot everything if I want to even stand a chance of being accepted :(

Carole, which large jewellery companies did you mean that had good lifestyle shots - I'm still a bit lost when it comes to that stuff? Please message me if you don't want to post on here!

caroleallen
31-03-2015, 08:07 AM
Have pm'd you Lauren.

Lucie
31-03-2015, 10:37 AM
Is it just the photography rules that have changed for Not on The Highstreet Carole?
I haven't applied personally, but know a few people that have been turned down because of "too many companies selling products of the same type" - mostly big players with a lot of financial backing. Seems such a shame.

caroleallen
31-03-2015, 12:49 PM
I don't think the photography rules have changed Lucie, it's just that to keep growing on there, you have to be top notch with your images. I don't want to speak out of turn but there are so many sellers on there now that it's difficult to get your stuff noticed these days unless you stand out.

medusa
03-04-2015, 07:45 PM
I shall be having to have shots of the jewellery being worn as well but as yet I don't have a model. My daughter's never around long enough to have a photo shoot. She hates it anyway and although she is rather lovely (unbiased opinion!) she always looks self conscious when posing for a photo.

I asked a friend of mine to ask around on a modelling Facebook page and I got a very mixed bag of replies. Some were obviously "glamour" models, some were positively plain and they were in all shapes and sizes plus a variety of hourly rates from 15 to 60. Needless to say, the one I liked best was the most expensive. I'll probably ask a friend of mine's daughter who is very beautiful. Not sure when Caroline's back as she'd have been perfect. It's all some way off though, so I'm not worrying about it at the moment.

All this is being done because Notonthehighstreet say my photography's not good enough for them now and I have to up my game if I want to get my stuff promoted. Fingers crossed that it all works out.

60 per hour and they get to keep their clothes on? I know a few photography models. If you let me know what kind of age shape look you want I could see if i can find someone if you don't want to wait for Caro to get back. Though it must be said her group of girl-friends are gorgeous (and yeah, I am being biased cause of my gal :))

caroleallen
03-04-2015, 08:07 PM
Thanks Liz. When I get to that stage, I'll be in touch if I still need someone.

emroyjewels
28-05-2015, 05:39 PM
Hey all,

can I ask for a bit of help from those of you lovely peeps that have one of these light boxes - I'm pulling my hair out!

I got the little one today but I can't work out how to use all the "knobs" to hold the camera over the top hole. The pic on cookies website isn't terribly helpful, and the manual is next to useless.

I know there are two knobs for the sides, and one for the front (side to side). Does that knob go into the little brass hole thingy? Or in the slot?

The problem seems to be if I use the knob with the hole in it in the camera, through the slot, the camera falls down the slot, and won't stay in place. I know you're supposed to be able to move it up and down, but it literally won't stay up. Would really love to know how you get it to stay up - and whether the rubber ring is on the camera side of the slot, or the knob side. ;)

Then there's the larger slot option with an angle bend in it - and I definitely have no idea how that works.

I'd love to be just a jeweller rather than a photography expert, but can't let this beat me!

:ta:

mizgeorge
28-05-2015, 06:27 PM
does this help at all Emma?

http://www.techlamps.co.uk/images/product/digi.gif

emroyjewels
28-05-2015, 06:52 PM
Hi George, no not really, but I appreciate you trying. ;)

My "knobs" don't look anything like those... & my box looks quite different, with a lift off front rather than drop down one. Plastic rather than metal.

I'm not sure why I'm finding it so complicated, but this is the kit I have (plus the top "frame" section)

7749

caroleallen
28-05-2015, 07:00 PM
I'm sorry I can't help either Emma. I only take shots from the side as I use props. I did have a look at the top hole and couldn't work it out either.

emroyjewels
28-05-2015, 07:14 PM
Haha, thanks Carole! Glad it's not just me. I'll give cookies a call in the morning. I don't want to send it back, but really need it to work from the side and the top to be useful. xx

Tabby66
28-05-2015, 08:06 PM
.......another one who couldn't work it out either,......would appreciate you sharing if you get an answer that makes sense Emma!!!!

xx

emroyjewels
29-05-2015, 10:19 AM
Hi all,

ok - so the one with the screw thread is definitely supposed to go through the slot. Cookies say the rubber washer should be on the back side of the slot, not on the camera side. Even with doing that, my camera isn't tightly held, and falls down to the bottom of the slot.

So I was setting it up right, it just doesn't seem to work.

Before I send it back for a refund, I'd be super grateful if you could try your camera on the top and see if it holds, or slides down. That way I know whether it's just mine that's dodgy and I should exchange or call it quits!

mizgeorge
29-05-2015, 10:55 AM
out of interest Emma, what sort of camera are you trying to attach? All the pictures I've seen appear to be of very lightweight point and shoot/super compact styles which makes me wonder whether you actually need a magic arm or similar to work from the top if you're using anything heavier.

emroyjewels
29-05-2015, 08:30 PM
Hi george - good point! I've tried both my slr-type camera, and my little point & shoot. Both of them still seem to have a gap between the end of the thread, and the slot. I'm going to see if I can find some rubber washers or something to plug the gap!

pauly
07-11-2015, 09:16 PM
Bit of a thread bump, just wanted to ask Carole and Lucie if the pictures on their websites were done using the light box?

Lucie
09-11-2015, 08:41 AM
Hi Pauly. Yes mine were all done using the lightbox.
I went for the big one & think that if you want to use backdrops and props, you'll need this one. To be honest, it would do with being bigger for some of my bits :)

pauly
14-11-2015, 04:58 PM
Thank you for your reply Lucie, your pictures are really good (i'm a little bit jealous), the different backgrounds look really good. I have got the small light box and agree that the larger one is a lot more suitable if you are using different backgrounds.

sambora
15-06-2016, 03:04 PM
I use the home made light box made of out the box with two paper windows on the side and one on the top. I might be buying a good quality light box as I'm not happy with some of the shots.

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