RetouchPRO

Go Back   RetouchPRO > Technique > Photo Retouching
Register Blogs FAQ Site Nav Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read


Photo Retouching "Improving" photos, post-production, correction, etc.

Looking for Jewelry Retouching Tutorials

Reply
 
Thread Tools
  #11  
Old 05-19-2016, 08:47 AM
mgilvey's Avatar
mgilvey mgilvey is offline
Junior Member
Patron
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Woodbridge, Virginia
Posts: 11
Re: Looking for Jewelry Retouching Tutorials

Yea, I do use dustless gloves and I ask the jeweler to do a good cleaning before handoff.
Reply With Quote top
  #12  
Old 07-05-2016, 10:01 PM
ray12's Avatar
ray12 ray12 is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: NYC
Posts: 320
Re: Looking for Jewelry Retouching Tutorials

There are three thoughts I have.

I usually use an Ultrasonic Bath on any piece of jewelry I photograph. Not cleaning your jewelry YOURSELF... will always give you significant dust and debris on the image because of the macro photography. Using a small ultrasonic cleaner could save you ten hours a week in retouching and frustration.

Hardly anybody is able to get great metallic gradients and smooth reflections across their jewelery... unless they are masters at Tenting, flagging, and using cards, flags and bounce surfaces to get that ultra smooth graded look (like the gradation inside of a ring). To get that perfect smooth gradation...you have to make your own gradations that you can substitute in during retouching. Get some larger rings...and set them up with nice reflected surfaces...and use these substitute gradations to "Cut In" the look you want. Who knows if the great reflection you retouch in... is from another ring...or piece of curved metal... or the inside or outside of a stainless mug. You use the path and pen tool to get the boundaries and edges...and you use these home made reflections to make your poorly lit jewelry look look like it was shot in a professional studio with lighting technicians.

There is a site that sells lights and "photographic tents" and waxes and hangers and fixtures... especially for jewelry photography. If you are not using some of the lighting tools that are customary in commercial studios you are likely to get over lit, poorly exposed, way hot dirty looking images. Shadowless photography, hanging jewelery so you get no background contamination etc is absolutely necessary to get those great looking images. Also having your own "Cut In" gradations and reflections and smooth natural curved shadows are also great ways to make unruly jewelery look professionally done.

Heres that Jewelery Photography Link:

http://www.mkdigitaldirect.com/produ...g-systems.html

Look around...some pages are no longer there...but there is still a total wealth of information for the first time jewelry photographer / retoucher there.

Reading through the site...learning the lighting and photography and jewelry mounting setups...and maybe buying a few near pro-grade accessories...will take your macro photography to a new high level.

PS: Granted... good tutorials are sometimes fairly hard to find on this subject (especially on photographing or retouching-in smooth shadows, curved gradations, and highlight management). The site above has some of the creation tools you will need... but the exact procedures, tips and retouch tips are often homegrown... and seem to be held close to the vest by these very creative and innovative artists and scientist types of people... who make their living off of their art and science and commercial skills. Good macro photographers are quite innovative and skillful...and often keep their very hard won tips to themselves and their assistants it seems.

Ray

Last edited by ray12; 07-05-2016 at 10:29 PM.
Reply With Quote top
  #13  
Old 07-06-2016, 10:41 AM
mgilvey's Avatar
mgilvey mgilvey is offline
Junior Member
Patron
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Woodbridge, Virginia
Posts: 11
Re: Looking for Jewelry Retouching Tutorials

Thanks Ray! Excellent information. I'll check out MK. So would you say it's better to shoot jewelry under strobes, small continuous light sources or is it a combination of both (which is what I think you are leaning toward)?
Reply With Quote top
  #14  
Old 07-06-2016, 12:12 PM
ray12's Avatar
ray12 ray12 is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: NYC
Posts: 320
Re: Looking for Jewelry Retouching Tutorials

When you look at those jewelry photographic tents...that produce the almost perfect images... they use diffused lighting primarily. The lighting is behind some internal translucent panels that spread the light and make it so that there are limited hotspots caused by a direct bulb reflection.

Continuous light sources are preferable to start with... because you can see instantly with your eye what effect you are causing. Using strobes gives you less visual feedback until the exposure is taken. Many people do not have the snoots, grids, reflectors, panels and diffusion screens for their H U G E strobes ( the physically large size of a strobe compared to the size of an ear ring for example). Many strobes that are used for models and studio work are just too big and over powered for fine detail jewelry...unless they are visually controlled with the right light shaping tools.

Many people today are using large diffusion panels (translucent plastic or scrim materials on a frame to get those gorgeous highlights without all the hotspots). It is also becoming more prevalent to use those small track lighting fixtures with the PAR 16 bulbs...because they are small and easily directed and placed. The use of LED lighting is also very attractive...especially for jewels with many facets... the multiple LED's really light up those internal stone reflections.

Do look at the MK site...and study it... so that you can see examples of easy to use lighting solutions. There are also several tutorials on lighting a ring or wine bottle kind of object there.

Light is light. It depends how it is shaped and modified and colored and spread that makes the difference in jewelry photography. Smaller lights are much easier to setup, control and position on a tabletop size of shooting platform. Its almost like you would want to use some kind of miniature lighting fixture solutions when you shoot miniature ring size subjects.

Some of the key elements in jewelry lighting is that you want highlights that do not have nasty uncontrolled hotspots... you want broad expanses of reflector boards or diffusers ( foamcore, plastic, colored cardboard etc) that cause those buttery smooth transitions and gradients and gradations... and you may want to shoot in a darkened studio sometimes so you get those equally important dark contrasts in the object. The use of louvered or honeycomb grids on your lights keeps the light from coming out and spilling out broadly everywhere around your set. They give your lighting tight directivity and more visual control.

Equally important are your retouching skills. The use of curves and layer masks, the pen tool for perfect edges and curves, and the ability to mask-in some nice jewelry looking gradients that are perfectly smooth. This jewelry photography is a combination of art, science, lighting, and the ability to innovate and solve problems with tough lighting issues. Sometimes shooting jewelry is like shooting into mirrors... how do you get nice looking shots with that kind of challenge glaring in your viewfinder??? How do you take a hotspot in Photoshop and make it become in control??

If you shoot and retouch your own jewelery you are very lucky... sometimes its a bit easier than getting a poorly shot, overly lit, out of focus ring... from some outside source that wants you to do magic with a poor specimen to start with. Lots of Luck!!
Reply With Quote top
  #15  
Old 07-06-2016, 12:39 PM
mgilvey's Avatar
mgilvey mgilvey is offline
Junior Member
Patron
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Woodbridge, Virginia
Posts: 11
Re: Looking for Jewelry Retouching Tutorials

Thanks Ray! I really appreciate the detail you went into. I have strobes, grids, light cube etc but never introduced any continuous light sources. I'll read through the website and see what other techniques I can add.

I will say, the last ring I photographed was $24,000 so I might be a little nervous to place it into an ultrasonic but I get your drift; it would save lots of time I think. I'll have to talk to the goldsmith and ask him if he's ok with that and what ultrasonic machine he would recommend.
Reply With Quote top
Reply

  RetouchPRO > Technique > Photo Retouching


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Head Shot Retouching time...How much time FCP Photo Retouching 25 01-26-2013 08:28 AM
Freelance photo retouching services 2012 Volcano Classifieds 0 05-18-2012 02:44 PM
seeking retouching internship in London, NY, LA emartin8907 Classifieds 0 04-27-2012 03:54 AM
Freelance photo retouching services Volcano Work/Jobs 0 03-25-2012 08:31 AM
Looking for a Junior retouching position (London) diamond Classifieds 0 03-14-2012 10:51 AM


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 02:29 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
SEO by vBSEO ©2011, Crawlability, Inc.
Copyright © 2016 Doug Nelson. All Rights Reserved