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5 Diamond Photography Tips for Every Jeweler

5 Diamond Photography Tips for Every Jeweler
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Are you in need of some diamond photography tips to take your online jewelry business to new heights? If yes, stick with us, and we’ll provide you with the basics.

“Someone told me my product photographs weren’t very clear. I’ve changed my product photographs 4x since. What am I doing wrong?”

Diamond photography frustration⁠—does this sound familiar to you? A lot of jewelers have been struggling with jewelry photography. Understandably, not all jewelers are professional photographers; some are just trying to make a living out of their passion while juggling different tasks and roles. Unfortunately, jewelry photography is challenging and time-consuming, but some jewelers don’t have the luxury of time and the skills to get it right the first time.

It’s very frustrating, especially when your sales are tied to the visual quality of your products. Did you know that the importance of clear product images and descriptions in retail has skyrocketed by 12-23% since the pandemic started?

Calm your nerves and hold your horses. Don’t sign up for a photography class just yet. Here, we are going to teach you how to photograph studio-quality diamonds using the basics.

Read on!

How to Master Diamond Photography with GemLightbox Macro

Learn how to master diamond photography in one click with just your smartphone and this step-by-step guide on GemLightbox Macro. Click now to find out!

5 Basic Diamond Photography Tips

1. Clean your diamonds.

clean your jewelry

The most basic but probably, easily forgotten⁠—cleaning your jewelry.

Jewelry cleaning is the primary step for capturing studio-quality images as your camera will capture whatever dust, dirt, and stains you have on the stone even if you can’t see it with your naked eye.

To clean your diamond jewelry or loose diamond stone, simply soak it in a gentle solution until fully degreased. Too often, water and some mild dish soap would do the work. Then, remove it from the solution and use a soft jewelry cleaning brush to remove excess dirt in hard-to-reach areas. You can also use a microfiber cloth or any other polishing cloth if you don’t have a brush.

Keeping your diamonds clean ensures that they maintain the sparkling appeal that every buyer covets.

2. Choose the right photography equipment.

choose the right photography equipment

Expensive DSLRs don’t always mean quality. In fact, it’s your skill, not your tools, that would matter more in photography. However, it still pays to know which equipment to use before you show up for work.

At a minimum, you would need the following equipment to get it done:

  • A camera (of course!)
  • A macro lens
  • Lighting sources
  • Tripod
  • Other props and holders

Why Your Smartphone is More Than Enough for Jewelry Photography

In this blog post, we’ll give you several reasons why smartphone jewelry photography should be on your agenda right now. Click the link and find out!

Some jewelers don’t always have basic photography knowledge; hence, they are easily overwhelmed by complex camera settings. In this case, you can choose to buy ready-made tools and equipment like lightboxes, which help diffuse the lighting for you if you don’t know how to control light.

Our clients use the GemLightbox as it is a one-click diamond photography solution that doesn’t require any technical know-how; just shoot and go using your smartphones.

Diamond photography tips - oval diamond with GemLightbox
Oval diamond ring photographed with GemLightbox and a smartphone

3. Use a macro lens.

diamond photography tips - use a macro lens

Diamonds are often small; thus, you would benefit from a macro lens. Macro lenses are like your camera’s magnifying glass. They were built to handle extremely close focusing distances and, as such, capable of capturing clear, crisp, and highly-detailed images of tiny subjects.

Macro lenses for SLRs are usually expensive, but more affordable clip-on macro lenses for smartphones can do the job just right.

Jewelry Photography: Smartphone vs DSLR / Mirrorless Cameras

The debate between Smartphone and DSLR / Mirrorless cameras continues to be a neverending topic in photography. It’s also a topic raised by our customers on a very regular basis. And…

If photographing diamonds is essentially part of your day-to-day business, you’d benefit more from investing in long-term photography solutions. These solutions save you a lot of time, energy, and money in the long run.

The GemLightbox Macro is one of our clients’ go-to solutions in diamond photography. Launched just recently, the Macro used market-leading technology that allows jewelers to capture diamond photos and 360 videos with up to 10x magnification using just their smartphones. In just a click, you’ll get diamond photos that are not only detailed but, more so, enticing. Watch the demo below.

4. Create a soft lighting environment.

Create a soft lighting environment

Perhaps one of the most critical diamond photography tips to remember concerns the lighting.

Natural lighting is the obvious choice for jewelry photography. It’s soft, continuous, diffused, and makes subjects appear in their natural state—similar to how we recognize the things around us.

But while natural lighting is the best light source for photography, depending on natural light limits your work flexibility. However, you can avoid this by simulating natural light using items you can easily get from nearby stores.

If a jewelry lightbox is out of your budget, the following can help you create a soft lighting environment.

  • Off-camera light sources like continuous lights, strobes, LED lights, and flashguns.
  • Light modifiers like translucent umbrellas, reflectors, or softboxes train the light in the direction you want. You may choose to use cheap ones if you’re still learning how to use them. You can always upgrade later on.

Effective Jewelry Photography Lighting Setup Ideas

Jewelry photography or photography, in general, is all about capturing beautiful subjects using the available light. It revolves around controlling and adding light whenever you deemed necessary. This necessity is...

5. Experiment with different setups.

Experiment with different setups

By now, you should already know the rule of thumb⁠—light subjects look better on dark backgrounds, and dark subjects look better on a light background. This also applies to jewelry photography as it creates contrast; thereby, leading to heightened visual interest, mood, and drama.

Experimenting with different setups doesn’t have to be costly and grand. In fact, you can accomplish this by alternating between different backgrounds—for example, white, black, and grey.

If you’re selling diamonds on platforms like Amazon and eBay, you might find that you have creative limitations. These platforms normally require product photos on a white background as white is more professional, clean, and non-distracting. Don’t let this guideline stop you from experimenting with other backgrounds, though, as you can use product photos with colored backgrounds on your social media pages or your web store if you have an independent jewelry website.

How to Photograph Jewelry on a Black Background

Learn how to photograph jewelry on a black background in seconds using just your smartphone. Click the link and find out!

Argyle pink diamond on a grey background
Argyle pink diamond on a grey background photographed with GemLightbox Macro and a smartphone

Argyle pink diamond 360 video
A 360-degree video of Argyle pink diamond, shot with GemLightbox Macro and a smartphone

Argyle pink diamond on a black background
Argyle pink diamond on a black background captured with GemLightbox Macro and a smartphone

Frequently Asked Questions:

What are the best camera settings for diamonds?

Invest in good lighting, set the ISO to the lowest value as much as possible, and set the aperture function to the fastest value. Keep testing until you find the settings appropriate for the type of diamond piece you’re photographing.

What is the best lighting for diamond photography?

Soft lighting is the best lighting for diamond photography.

How do you make diamonds sparkle in photography?

Use both soft and hard lighting to balance the light distribution and at the same time, produce the scintillation effect. You can also buy sparkler lights at a store near you.

Why is it hard to take a picture of a diamond?

Diamond photography is difficult because diamonds are reflective pieces. The light bounces and reflects on the camera; thereby, producing glares.

Are you ready to master diamond photography?

Now that you know the basic steps, it’s time to get back to work and stop poor product photography from derailing your sales.

Remember, successful diamond photography begins even before you click the shutter button. Plan and execute seamlessly.

What other diamond photography tips do you have up your sleeve? Let us know in the comment section below!

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