Lately I have found myself wishing for magical powers way too often. My daily workload just got out of hand and some tasks are just too time consuming - I bet you all know what I am talking about. Right?! Well, I can't help with a lot but maybe when it comes to taking photos for whatever reason - of objects - I have compiled somewhat 10 helpful 'hacks' which can at least make that job a lot easier.
1. The white background
The white background is most likely the handiest of photoshoot backdrops and the easiest is white paper or white foam board. Both are easy to set up and great for flat lays or detail/macro images. I talked about other fairly cheap background options and why it could make sense to choose something else in my '5 Jewellery Photography Tips' and much more too, so check it out!
2. The use of a Prop box / shelf can be handy.
Well, mine is a bit a larger and it is a storage drawer under my bed. I pull it out and have it all in sight to set up for whatever I may need for that particular shoot. If you are just beginning you might think that is a lot but you will see as you get going that props are found everywhere and once you are inspired by something it is hard to let go. Furthermore, and that is most likely the better reason, once you have started to shoot with an object it is good to keep it to maintain the look of your blog or online store cohesive, same goes for insta. Not in all cases but often.
3. Equipment and light
As mentioned in my previous '5 Tips ..' as well choose the right equipment for you. Your photos will look better if you love your tools. As for light - natural is best and a weather app could be helpful. In case your light source is very limited use a cardboard sheet covered in white paper or aluminium foil as reflector. The white paper is softer in regards to reflection but it won't change the light so this should be your first choice. The aluminium foil can be better when the light is not as strong but double check to avoid having a blue hue coming into the mix.
5. Style your images
Sounds crazy to mention after we talked about where to store your props but yes indeed - styling needs to be done. This is actually a consideration which ends up being in my shoot plan way before my actual setup. Sometimes I create mood boards and sketches of what I wish to style, how and for what. But it is point 5 as if you shoot your products or similar things more often this will be something you are trained in and it wont be that much effort anymore unless you are dare to edit new stuff of course :D
6 + 7.Take multiple photos and include negative space.
Not always is everything right for that one shot. Your camera could be shaking without you knowing just by shutter speed. So come on don't be shy take more than one photo and have the choice while editing the best shot.
Additionally, don't just take close ups. Negative space / Rule of Thirds [image on the right] can help with scale and could make the whole image appear cleaner. On top of that, you will always have the option to crop the image while editing you photo.
4. Diffusers for sunny days
Well, sometimes you just can't have it all. All is prepped, your setup, styling and plan for the shoot all sorted. Everything right for a natural shoot close to your window. Weather app clearly states cloudy - but there is sun, tadaa...
Time for a diffuser to not be too disturbed by that. Well of course you can go out and buy one and so on but what if not already done and you wish to proceed? The solution could be white greaseproof paper or fine white fabric to filter the light. Alternatively an almost clear plastic lid could also do the trick.
Puhh, what a list feeling like a tea break is needed and also, seeing all my latest creations almost shouting at me - we need to be photographed too. As I said total overload on tasks. Anyway, hope you have your tea or coffee and feet up! Let's get right back to it, shall we?
9. Edit your photos
It is an extra step but it is well worth doing as it can add the little extra to create a cohesive look for all your images. You do not need to go all out with Photoshop there are plenty of other solutions out there just have a look around the app store, I can recommend Affinity Photo. But often the simple photo editing options which are delivered with the simple photo editing software on your phone, tablet, or Mac / pc are more than enough to start.
10. Have fun! Stay true to your own style and it will show!
So will be get going on my next shoot now and start preparing which also means I will be listing new designs so stop by again soon. For now fabulous photoshoots, Antje
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Time is passing by way too fast at least on my end. I am working away and happily so, the new batch of mostly unique geometric display sets is up. I am working on a couple of bespoke pieces and, believe it or not, on new designs for the candle season and Christmas. Haha, indeed not even Easter yet?!
Anyhow, I sometimes feel the need to charge up my creative energies and so I thought it is maybe time for another inspirational post for displaying options and ideas. However, this time I won't provide all the ideas but rather showcase some of yours. I selected a couple of kind shares and carefully curated, styled and captured images by you. All images are of course linked to their source.
Let's have a look into the rather plain product images which are often described as rather boring but even those can easily be elevated to a social media share. How? Let's see, above is a white background and below is a grey one. The background could be anything, maybe your brand colour/s, your favourite texture or even a mix of things like fabric and tabletop. I of course photograph the modular concrete display set, as this is what I sell, and the jewellery within is to show details, proportions and to offer styling variations for editorial shoots to inspire. However, if you are looking to showcase one piece you might still set up like this but zoom in on the piece you wish to capture and catch it a bit closer. This way the surrounding concrete sculpture or display becomes the background. In regards to set up and light you might like to have look into these tips here as well.
Well, while you are at it try to use the display set, stand or object differently than in the intended way. Have a look above, it is surprising how intriguing in a completely different way the diamond becomes once you place it to sit on another one [click the image to compare it further if you like] or take the stud earring stand. Of course we all know the earring belong where the necklace is but, I and maybe it is just me, I find this set up very pleasing too. Anyhow, this shall be enough on tips from me for today, images speak louder than 1000 words or so they say. Plenty more in my others posts and below are fabulous works and styling inspiration by you ....
Thanks so much for stopping by - I hope you liked these little drops of inspiration and thank you for choosing my work to elevate your stunning creations. Have a marvellous day, Antje
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Five easy and quick tips for jewellery and product photography are coming up. Of course you love your creation and want it to be presented at its best but it is small and it is reflective and therefore not the easiest thing to photograph. I know every guide out there for selling your products online is telling us - how we present the product in our photos is going to make or break our shops. Sure, right, but how? Right?! Since I have been creating my modular concrete display blocks I have been writing about how to style them, stacking and aligning, backgrounds and props but a lot more goes into taking a good picture before all of that.
First you need to decide on light. In general it is best to photograph with natural light, a cloudy day gives a natural light. I would say this is the rule of thumb, full stop.
But of course if you are having a boho fairy tale jewellery shop maybe white light is not the best for you to sell. It will do for the product image which you should always have to provide the details but the selling image most likely will be in a styled environment with warm shall we say soft sunlight. So to start with the product image set up with the white light [cloudy day light] but as soon as you have settled on an overall vibe / theme of your jewellery find the light for the atmospheric, 'feel' of how it is to wear your jewellery, light. Which brings us straight to the second tip.
Second, gather us much inspiration as you can.
Often you can use things which inspired you to make that piece of jewellery in your photography as well. Sometimes you can reuse backgrounds or props to give an overall feeling also known as cohesive look to your collection or shop.
Third - go for it - take loads of pictures and even if you think you have things figured out take at least 10. [psst ... I take even more] You can delete later but better you have the option to do so as having to start all over again. Taking pictures and setting up as well as having the creative mindset for it is quite an undertaking, don't underestimate it.
Fourth, think of your customer! Think of what you know about the piece you created and show that as well as what the customer might want to see. This is called providing perspective. Different angles, details, combinations and styling.
Fifth, learn about your camera, maintain your and experiment with different equipment. Of course, we always hear, you need a better camera. That could be true but once you know your camera don't be hasty. This knowledge is key, at a certain stage you will love your camera, you will set up with your camera and can concentrate on styling as you learned with your camera what settings give you the desired outcome. And this is true for phone cameras as well as for an SLRs.
Little extra tip - if you are thinking of new gear, make sure it is easy for you to understand and is purposefully chosen. New is not always best for you.
Indeed, if you like, we can call it the sixth tip, never stop tweaking! Your feedback will be coming from your customers and from the best resonating images to your brand vision, it is never a good idea to stop. Learn from the feedback and go from there. On top of all that the more images you take the better you'll get. Learn from others, meet a fellow maker for a photoshoot or exchange designs and take pictures of each others works. You will see how they see your works and even more inspiration will come from that conversation. This is most likely the best tip I can give today. Anyhow, I think you will find that these tips do not just apply to jewellery photography but to product photography altogether. More tips on Geometric Concrete Photography Props and Jewellery Styling Inspiration and feel invited to browse my blog sections above and even more can you find over here!
Have a fabulous photoshoot, Antje
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Exciting news my first brand new designs for 2019 entered my shop! And what can I say it is not just one but two heavily geometric designs to grow our much loved modular concrete display and photo prop options - fabulous!
First an absolute new style for me as a designer is the 'Mountain' concrete tile. I decided to call it that because in many abstract ways it looks a lot like that. The different tops of this geometric abstract offer various ways of displaying rings, bracelets and much more. I finish them very smooth to an almost gloss finish which enhances the depths and ever so little reflects the light. But don't let me go on have a look for your self, images below, left and of course all the details are here!
And the second design is a bit of something new meets something known - the much loved mini concrete diamonds meet the new more facetted larger diamond and create a new group of six sculpture diamond solids!
This set is now perfect to display small and larger rings, they also have this new very smooth finish and it creates a wonderful sculpture still.
Well, I know ideas of displaying with these beauties are just flying but if you'd like even more inspiration have a look at my 'Photo Styling With Concrete' blog section or of course my shop section 'Concrete - Prop
Can't wait to see what styling options you come up with #pasinga or comment below!
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Thank you so much for all you kind notes on social media, your comments and requests in regards to more ideas and maybe with a background and so on. Here we go, your wish was my exciting command and I photographed my latest batch of modular geometric concrete blocks in multiple ways to inspire.
Well, I think the basics with a white background and using some simple other props to style your designs are covered in this post - Geometric Concrete Photography Props and Jewellery Styling Inspiration and even more can you find over here!
But enough let's get right to it, shall we?! On the left I used recycled grey/brown paper. But it was a bit dull so I crunched it a bit to add a bit of depth and allow the concrete solids to carry smoother textures all the way to the shiny jewellery.
Below, I used a dark grey paper for the background. It is an A2 size sheet and hung without hard fold. I then added the concrete blocks and stacked them in a playful way before adding jewellery or cosmetics/nail polish. I always allow for a bit of space to show the whole set however, to showcase just the one bottle or just the earrings you of course zoom in or crop later but for editorial shots this looks about right to inspire.
Moving on with the dark background but doing a flat-lay on the left and an image with great depth to the right focussing on the jewellery in the middle - centre stage if you like. Both angles illustrate how a customer would most likely see your designs at a market stand or retail display in a jewellery shop. Since this is the case this is a simple and effective way to promote just your designs.
It is the time to cozy up and some of you noted that they are looking to display on a natural while modern edgy look. So here is my first take, if you like, of the season. I chose brown wrapping paper here, I am not really keen on those lines in the paper but I did not any brown paper without it at hand.
The flat-lay on the left has a large sheet of crushed/wrinkled brown paper as a base. From there I added the concrete solids and after that a mix of moss flakes. One cup of moss flakes was enough to create a display with these six sculpture solids. And of course, lastly, the jewellery was added. Just a little note, look how different one and the same set can appear - above on a dark background and here with moss. The right side has a bit more going on. The sheet is smaller, wrinkled but styled for depth of the photograph or for a plinth display. The sheet is set up to appear floating, just to be anchored down by the weight of the concrete. I added a dark green Reindeer Moss tree to have the natural element be the tallest object. From there it goes right to the jewellery, followed by the smooth concrete and finished with, or the circle is closed by, a mix of moss flakes.
Well, I hope you enjoyed this little post and feel inspired for your display. There is always more to come so feel invited to follow and of course to browse my blog sections above. Looking
forward to see what you come up with #pasinga!
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I did something completely different from what I nowadays do. I have to admit it was a bit of a flashback moment but all in a good way! I don't know if many of you know that I used to photograph products, styled shoots and designed marketing materials. Yes, it all helped to fund PASiNGA as a creative studio as I started out.
Fast forward ... I asked some selected makers to loan me their wonderful products for my Christmas Special this year and among them was Rebecca from [M]Botanicals. Well, what can I say I couldn't resist but to say "yes" as she asked me if I could do some more photographs for her. Anyhow, I wont bore you any longer with the details but since this is a styled shoot and a unique concrete cube is the main prop I thought it would be of interest to you too and could inspire you on how you may also use your PASiNGA concrete prop for your curated or editorial photoshoots! So here we go ...
I hope you feel inspired not just to style and photograph but to light a wonderful candle. If you like - go on and read my artisan Christmas gift guide series and learn more about her eco-friendly handcrafted products and meet many other wonderful designer maker along the way.
Have a beautiful day,
Another big batch of unique geometric concrete modular sculpture solids is here!
I am so excited to write this update today. The first batch of these versatile solids was thanks to you a great success and the second batch has been available to you for about 3 weeks. Thank you for waiting so patiently while I crafted the sets and some of you have already called first dips!
Anyhow some sets are still available for next day shipping and I will add more unique combinations and finishes to the collection. So it will always be worth checking 'Prop Set / Jewellery Display' as it will be an evolving page!
Here we go a sneak peek of my favourite geometric sculpture stills of the current collection in all its monochrome glory!
My first blog post about the sculpture solids as well as prepping and displaying jewellery and other small products for a photoshoot include options of flat lays, stacking and aligning as well as some options with background.
Thank you all it is awesome to share these with you!
May I inspire you?
I do love crafting concrete sculpture solids and the more unique the more fun I am having. I usually create minimal artistic stills but recently I also used them to display and elevate works by other artists.
Since these blocks are one offs in the way they feature imperfections and often in the combination or design they are sold in as well, the styled images of the set wont be seen on my site anymore. I think that is a shame as they can inspire and help to get started with setting up and get the creative juices running.
So here we go a collection of photography styling ideas for jewellery, pins and smaller beauty items....
Stack them ...
Align them ...
Flat lay them ...
Style them with background - fabric, paper or metal sheets and / or by adding other props ....
I hope those ideas inspire you and of course I would love to see what you come up with!