Finding the right jewelry photography equipment to use when capturing mesmerizing photos of your jewelry designs and products can be intensely challenging. In fact, most jewelers don’t even know where to start due to so many options available on the market.
From classic timepieces and diamond-encrusted necklaces to golden rings and bracelets, jewelry photography is a form of art that keeps on giving. If done right, it can help you get ahead of the competition and make prospects swarm into your e-store.
However, creating stunning photos that perfectly capture your finest pieces is more of a challenge than you know. Why? Because your efforts and image quality depend on the equipment you use.
With that in mind, this guide will help you learn everything you need to know about choosing professional jewelry photography equipment for generating outstanding results.
In this article
Why It’s Essential to Have the Right Jewelry Photography Equipment
Jewelry photography falls into a highly specialized and unique category. It requires high-end equipment and specific skills to showcase the grandeur of the gemstone pieces in your collection.
The equipment empowers you to capture the intricacies and beauty of your jewelry products. More importantly, it helps you capture immersive photos to motivate prospects to buy your products.
If your jewelry photography hits all the right spots, it could turn average website visitors into loyal buyers. In a visual business landscape, the importance of top-class jewelry photography can’t be emphasized enough.
However, there is so much more to this type of photography than your average point-and-shoot. You need to think about the composition, angles, and lighting elements that are all vital to helping customers visualize the details and usability of your jewelry products.
Think about it this way. Since you’re selling your products online, customers don’t have the opportunity to try your products to see how they look when being worn in real life. All they have is your visual representation of your jewelry products.
Professionally shot top-quality images accurately capture and depict your products, thus impacting consumers’ decisions to buy. That’s why professional jewelry photography is vital in marketing materials, such as social media posts, brochures, catalogs, you name it.
Hence, the reason to invest in cutting-edge jewelry photography equipment is to showcase your brand and attract the right target audience.
What Are the Costs of Jewelry Photography Equipment?
The cost of jewelry photography kits is a beast on its own. The prices vary greatly, and no one can tell you how much this equipment will cost. However, you can start by considering the essentials to get you started.
An average jewelry photography kit should include:
- A camera
- Macro lenses
- Camera tripod
These elements are necessary for jewelry photography at home. Now, you can easily build a jewelry photography studio on a budget. Investing in a good camera is the trickiest and most expensive part.
While you can find an excellent camera on second-hand websites, a decent-quality camera can cost up to a couple of thousands of dollars. Fortunately, you can buy entry-level cameras for less than 500 bucks.
For example, the most recommended camera for beginners, Canon Rebel SL1, costs around $450 on Amazon. Remember that you need a camera with 3x optical zoom (at least), mid to high megapixels, decent macro capability, and a good sensor.
As for the rest of your photography equipment, which includes a tripod, lighting, and background, it can come in at about $100–$150. It all comes down to your preferences and the budget you can afford to spend.
Professional Jewelry Photography Equipments You Need
Here’s a breakdown of the essentials you need for creating a DIY jewelry photography light box kit.
1.A Reliable DSLR Camera
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When it comes to photographing jewelry, DSLR cameras are the best for the job. Though you can easily list hundreds of top-grade DSLR cameras on the web, having so many options makes it difficult to make the most affordable and informed decision.
Here are the top two entry-level DSLR camera options for taking jewelry photos to get you started:
- Nikon D3400 – an entry-level DSLR camera solution that allows you to adjust vital camera settings to accomplish top results, such as aperture and shutter speed. D3400 lets you transfer your photos seamlessly to any tablet, desktop, or mobile device via Bluetooth. The starting price ranges between $499 and $579.99.
- Canon EOS Rebel T5 – perfect for amateurs and beginners, EO Rebel T5 is a powerful DSLR camera that allows you to capture outstandingly sharp and clear jewelry images. It comes with advanced features, such as an image processor, enhanced zoom, and auto-mode. The price ranges between $384.49 and $549.99.
Read more: Best camera for jewelry photography
2.Several Macro Lenses
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Macro lenses are critical for close-up photography. They can reproduce small objects at 1:1 magnification at the closest focusing distance.
Though prices of macro lenses vary from brand to brand, you should focus on the following factors:
- Focal length – expressed in mm, focal length determines three important aspects of successful photography, such as optical distance, magnification, and the lens’ angle of view.
- Image stabilization – mitigates vibration caused by handheld photography and prevents motion blur.
Here’s the top selection of budget-friendly macro lenses for jewelry photography for your consideration:
- Laowa 85mm f/5.6 2x Ultra Macro APO (around $449);
- Panasonic Lumix S 14-28mm F4-5.6 Macro (around $798);
- Laowa CF 65mm f/2.8 2x Ultra Macro Lens (around $399);
- Canon EF-M 28mm f3.5 Macro IS STM (around $299);
- Sigma 105mm f/2.8 DG DN Macro Art ($799).
Using a high-end camera tripod helps you ensure the top-quality and consistency of your jewelry images by eliminating camera shakes and handheld camera vibrations. Handholding your smartphone or camera may make your photos blurry due to unwanted camera shake.
No matter how much you invest in your lighting setup and camera, camera shakes are a common problem you can fix with a tripod. Tripods are pretty affordable and beneficial at the same time. They enable you to use optimal ISO and aperture settings.
In addition, they allow you to capture consistent shots. If you’re looking for a budget-friendly tripod, consider the Amazon Basics 60-inch lightweight tripod that costs $20.70.
Your selection of lighting solutions can make or break your jewelry photography efforts. It is vital to capturing quality jewelry visuals, especially if you’re new to this type of photography and possess limited image editing skills.
Investing in lights for your jewelry photography can be quite challenging since there are endless possibilities. However, one thing is certain: the more you can afford, the better you get.
The price of a lighting kit depends on the brand and additional accessories and equipment that come with it. For example, two-sided light reflectors, light bulbs, and softbox stands are common find in an average-priced lighting kit.
More budget-friendly versions come with one softbox and multiple bulbs. However, they typically don’t include a reflector. If that’s not a problem, you can go with the StudioFX kit, which costs around $60 on Amazon.
Of course, you can always go with natural lighting as it’s the most affordable and accessible lighting source. However, keep in mind that you’ll have to find the perfect time to properly illuminate your products in either indoor or outdoor settings and capture your jewelry photos.
In addition, consider using lighting (LED) fixtures, as these are commonly used lighting sources in jewelry photography.
A lightbox can empower your jewelry photography efforts by making the entire process simple, consistent, and convenient. If time is not an issue, you can go DIY on your lightbox to save money. However, the DIY version may not be the best option for every shooting set.
For example, a DIY lightbox may not be as durable or time-resilient as a premium solution sold in the market. So, if you’re on a limited budget, you should look for a lightbox specifically designed for jewelry photography.
The GemLightbox is one such solution. Though it may be pricey (around $899), it features an entire lighting system to help you bring out the scintillation, brilliance, and fire of the jewelry products in your collection.
6.AI Product Photo Generators
Today, you have a wide range of AI photo software tools that allow you to tap into AI-powered jewelry photography like a professional. These tools use the power of artificial intelligence to automate a healthy portion of your image editing efforts.
AI product photo generators help you create top-quality jewelry images without the need for physical samples. For example, Booth.ai is one of the leading AI photo freeware tools that help you generate immersive product photos seamlessly.
The tool is easy to use. You simply provide a reference image of the product and input text describing the wanted results. Booth.ai will generate professional-grade 4K photos based on your requirements.
AI-generated photos are instantly ready for website uploads and marketing materials. Do you know what’s crazy? Booth.ai empowers you to generate your images in only a few simple steps. In addition, Booth.ai will handle photo editing for you.
7.Photo Editing Software
Photo editing tools are quite popular in the world of product and jewelry photography. There are now many AI photo editing software options available to enhance your jewelry photo editing process. They exist to help you enhance your photography to perfection. These tools enable you to upgrade your photos using various features to manipulate, change, and adjust critical aspects of your photography.
These aspects include focus, clarity, coloration, exposure, image file size, white balance, etc. The leading photo editors on the web can help you enhance the focus of your images, highlight key aspects, and transform average-looking photos into immersive photography.
Selecting the right editing software can help improve your conversion rate, speed up your website loading speed, draw traffic to your social media account, and improve your search engine rankings. Choose an ideal photo editor with ease of use, functionality, and editing features in mind.
A photo table helps you level the light source and the jewelry. Simply place the jewelry on the table to get the perfect lighting balance for your photography. Here’s the best part.
You don’t need to spend a fortune on something simple as a photo table. Any standard folding table will do here. Ideally, opt for a table with a width ranging from 24 to 27 inches.
A white backdrop works like a charm for jewelry photography. It helps you highlight the true colors of jewelry, resulting in incredible product photos. White is the perfect color for your photography background because it’s neutral. It perfectly interacts with colors, reflections, lighting, etc.
That allows you to take perfect shots without breaking a sweat. In addition, white background helps you create an impression of neatness, sophistication, and professionalism. A white backdrop will turn your online visuals into an attention-grabbing, eye-pleasing photo display.
Achieving a white backdrop is quite easy. All you need is a couple of white foam boards or a roll of white paper. You can also use white fabric to create soft, slightly diffused lighting.
Alternatively, explore other creative backgrounds for jewelry photography based on your requirements.
A grey card can be handy when capturing perfect photos of silver jewelry. Since grey is also a neutral color, it gives your jewelry photography the proper exposure by adjusting the white balance and exposure settings.
That’s why most professional photographers refer to a grey card as a reference point when adjusting photo settings. Just place a grey card near the jewelry products you want to photograph. If you’re using a lightbox, place the grey card inside.
Do you know what the best part is? You can buy a grey card in any photography tool store. If you live in a neighborhood without such a shop, use non-reflecting grey paper as an alternative.
As for props, you don’t need anything too fancy. Look for holders, jewelry stands, and similar props to perfectly capture your jewelry. For example, you can use a stand that matches your background to take top shots of necklaces.
A matching stand will complement the length of your jewelry piece and let you highlight its grandeur. Keep in mind that each type of jewelry requires adequate props. If you’re photographing rings, you’ll need different props, such as jewelry-holding wax, museum putty, or Elmer’s putty.
You can find these on any e-commerce platform like Amazon. Apply as little amount as possible to avoid tainting your images.
Do You Really Need Everything?
If you want to capture perfect jewelry photos, you’ll need essential photography setup equipment. That includes a camera, tripod, lighting, macro lenses (if you want to capture big images for printing purposes), accessories, such as putty, improvised background, and two whiteboards that you can use as reflectors to direct light to your products.
These are bare necessities to get you started with jewelry photography. In addition, you’ll need a top-grade photo editor to take care of your post-production needs. If you don’t know where to start with photo editing software, Booth.ai may be a good starting point.
In a modern-day internet-driven business landscape, online shoppers are becoming more visual and digital every day. They demand exceptional visuals to drive their purchasing decisions.
If you want your jewelry brand to stand out in such an overwhelmingly competitive market, you’ll need outstanding jewelry photography to captivate the target audience from the first impression.
This guide showed you the jewelry photography equipment essentials to get you started. If you’re not operating on a short budget, you can find everything you need on e-commerce platforms like Amazon. However, if money is an issue, start by acquiring a high-end camera kit.