Friday, January 27, 2012


I've been busy this week revamping the pictures at my Etsy shop Sow's Ear Jewelry. My photos have improved over time as I've learned more about how my camera works -- the learning curve for which would probably have been shorter if I'd actually read the tome directions that came with the camera. [Insert my mother sighing and wondering where she went wrong here.] I've also learned that for lighting purposes I absolutely have to wait for a sunny day to take photographs.

I think the biggest challenge in taking pictures, though, is choosing a background that looks interesting enough without it becoming the focus of the picture.  I tend to try to get too artsy about it -- especially a few hours into a photo session -- and end up with backgrounds that are distracting.  One way I've learned to handle the problem is to step away for a few minutes.  Snack breaks come in handy for this purpose.

I like to alternate between light and dark or bright backgrounds so people can visualize the pieces with different colors and textures of clothes.  I don't know if this is a good idea or not, but it seems like it would be.  It also helps to keep me from getting bored.

I'm learning that photographing jewelry to its best advantage is not the same as pairing it with clothing.  The earrings above are a good example.  I own a pair and have worn them with outfits such as a black turtleneck and jeans, a fun faux-tigerskin jacket with a retro feel, or a crisp white shirt and tailored pants. I can also envision them on a biker chick with a Harley Davidson jacket or on a young girl dressed in 80s vintage. There is, as far as I can see, no way to communicate all that with a picture so it's best to keep things simple.

I'm also experimenting with different views.  After all, jewelry is meant to be worn on the body and seen from multiple angles.

You can view all the new photos at Sow's Ear Jewelry.  I'd love it if you'd take a moment to check them out and then leave me some feedback here in the comments.

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