Today I had a one-to-one Jewellery Photography Training Session with Mike Brehaut from Creative Photography.
The below image was the outcome – read on to see how I got on:
I met Mike initially through The Best of Guernsey and had the pleasure of looking through his photography work to create banners for their Feature and loved his style of work. If I was ever to marry again, I would definitely choose him as my wedding photographer is no longer on island. More recently I had the pleasure of being beside his stand at the recent wedding fayre Pierrine attended.
I have always loved photography and even studied it a bit in the third year of my Graphic Design degree but I am talking years ago. My husband bought me a lovely Nikon D3000 camera for Christmas 2009 and ever since I have been meaning to really use it to its full potential. I bought Photoshop Elements 8.0 last year and have been trying to teach myself as this version is very different to the one I was using at Uni!
My jewellery photography has developed a lot since I first started out in 2009:
I am now pretty pleased with most of my photographs and the use of my new camera, more imagination and more time has been starting to pay off:
However, I know there is room for improvement and just felt I needed advice with using the manual mode, lighting (I live in an old cottage with small windows and a mill over looking us!) and editing so I contacted Mike for his help.
So today Mike came to my house to see the equipment I have, the setting I was taking photographs in and the editing tools I have and spent two hours with me being honest and to the point. He did not overwhelm me with things I didn’t need to know but gave me the basic training specific to me and my business. I learnt that putting in the extra time to get the shot right will save time in editing and it is best to get the initial picture the best it can be.
Lighting was a key area to cover as I my cottage is not very well-lit and I had resorted to photographing everything in a light tent but Mike showed me how this was not necessary. Just by using manual focus, natural soft light coming in through the window, adapting the aperture and shutter speed accordingly, using my tripod (which had been gathering dust!) and using a few light reflecting tips. All I had remembered from Uni about aperture was something about the bigger the number the smaller the hole! But wow, after Mike’s help there will be no more stretching my head in the light tent bending myself into all different shapes to get the right picture!
We then went on to using Photoshop Elements to edit the image. It did not need a lot of work done, to be honest, but Mike showed me a few simple image enhancing tips to just make the picture more eye-catching and therefore showing off my jewellery to its best. I had been a bit overwhelmed by Photoshop to be honest and had always opted to use PAINT.Net instead but I think like all of what I have learnt today, practice makes perfect.
I am so happy with the final image results and want to share pictures of the same necklace which I took in my light tent a while back and what Mike helped me take and edit today:
I am so appreciative to Mike, I only fear that now I have to spend lots of time re-taking my jewellery photographs but hey as I said, practice makes perfect!
For more information about Mike and Creative Photography go to www.creativephotography.gg
A big thanks to Mike for restoring my photography passion.