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Thread: A Girl's Best Friend

  1. #1
    Loose Canon's Avatar
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    A Girl's Best Friend

    This was going up for sale and the owner needed some shots. Pretty decent appraisal value as the diamonds, though small, are of very high quality. And there are twenty of them. Set around an oval cut London Blue Topaz, gold mount.

    The owner was very pleased, but it was kind of an “I need it yesterday” assignment.

    I like these, but wonder if I have done this piece any justice as far as a “commercial” shot is concerned. I don’t have much experience with this kind of jewelry (way too hoity and much too toity for me!) and don’t really know what it is that high end traders in this type of item look for when they are examining a piece via a photograph.

    A Girl's Best Friend

    A Girl's Best Friend

  2. #2

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    Re: A Girl's Best Friend

    Hi Terry,

    For jewellery, one often gets the best "sparkle" by hitting it with hard light, so you get specularity from the gems.

  3. #3
    Loose Canon's Avatar
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    Re: A Girl's Best Friend

    Hi Colin.

    Ironic (for me at least) you should say that because I tried to limit the specularity. The cuts of all these rocks seemed to me to throw so much everywhere that it seemed that I was blowing the entire shot out. Definitely lost detail. Then there was the Topaz that seemed to suffer greatly when I hit the diamonds hard and vice-versa. It was difficult for me to get a good balance with the ice and the topaz and probably never did. I used it as an excuse to try to get it right with one frame rather than have to blend multiples exposed or lit differently.

    Next time I get a good piece like this I’ll take your advice to heart. In fact I have another piece this owner wants shot. Silver and turquoise necklace and earings. If the ring doesn’t sell I could maybe even get it back in two or three weeks to shoot again. I’m thinking I may not have had the lighting angles/intensity/distance all in concert. So I hit it a bit softer with diffusion and tried that direction.

    Thank you, Colin. Great to get lighting advice from you. This stuff is like shooting in a House of Mirrors for me!

  4. #4

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    Re: A Girl's Best Friend

    Hi Terry,

    Yeah, it's tricky. You could try one hard, one soft and then change the opacity to see it there's a nice middle ground (with appropriate blending mode changes). You'd probably then need to fake the reflection though.

    Gotta have that sparkle though!
    Last edited by Colin Southern; 13th November 2011 at 05:07 AM.

  5. #5

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    Re: A Girl's Best Friend

    Nice shots and they look fine to me.

    While a bit of sparkle may add to them, why make something that everyone else is making? Sparkles just right for my tastes.

  6. #6
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    Re: A Girl's Best Friend

    Hi Terry, the first one works very well for me. It has the feeling like I could pick it up, pay for it, and give it to my wife for our anniversary (which happens to be today).

    The second one looks more like a brooch and as such, against a black background, I would eliminate the reflection because it confuses the image.

  7. #7
    Loose Canon's Avatar
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    Re: A Girl's Best Friend

    Thank you, Bobo. I appreciate the comments.

    Hi Frank!

    A couple of things.

    Most importantly, Happy Anniversary and congratulations to you and your lovely bride!

    And another thing. I really enjoyed reading your interview. That shot of Beloved Daughter planting one on you was priceless!

    Now that you mention it, I see what you mean about #2. I would have only gone with #1, and did really. But since I had the ring I wanted to play around with some lighting and various things. Mostly for my own benefit. It is interesting, frustrating, and fun all at the same time to shoot something like this. At least for me, anyway. No matter what you do with it, or from what angle you hit it from, all those faucets (sparkly surfaces) toss off reflections everywhere. Thank you for taking the time to comment, Frank, and enjoy your day today!

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