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Don't you just hate "hook" headers like that!

Don't you just hate "hook" headers like that! Okay, the title is a little misleading. While I am photophobic (not crazy about having my picture taken), the phobia I'm referring to is actually the anxiety I experience when trying to photograph jewelry! It's been a challenge for years. And because I have so many pieces and variations, budgeting for professional photography is not practical.

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Glass and metal are so hard to capture well. Trying to resolve reflections, white spots, shadows all drive me nuts. There are a huge number of places on the web dedicated to this subject, so I know it's not just me. I've actually learned quite a bit I didn't know before. Now I just have to figure out how to apply it to my needs, and skill level.

To remedy this phobia, I went back online looking for solutions. I did try some of the DIY solutions, but they just weren't doing what I need or I suppose it's a remote possibility I wasn't doing them right. It seemed the best choice (for me) was a pre-fab photo tent. I went to Amazon and bought a light tent, as well as a couple of studio lamps with 5000k lights. I already had a decent camera and tripod.

The tent arrives folded into a circular nylon zipper bag that measures 17 inches in diameter and about 2 inches deep. When opened it is a 30-inch cube. The framework for this tent is an automatic spring-action. OMG!!! It was like opening a self-inflating raft in the middle of my studio. It went flying, and so did everything in it's way. Yes, I should have read the directions first. I'm usually pretty good about visualizing things, but this was so much bigger than I had pictured in my head. My original plan was to have a dedicated area to photograph, but when I saw how much space this would take (kind of like a big white elephant in the room) it was obvious I couldn't leave it up. At least now I know to clear the deck when I'm opening it.

The lights I ordered we're good, and to my relief didn't jump out of the box. I bought two as shown in various set up photos for the tent. Two is not enough. I found I needed at least one more lamp and/or a daylight source (aka window). The lamps use 5000k Daylight bulbs. Regular household bulbs create a yellow cast. although I'm not sure about the new fluorescents. It took a while, and tempered my impatience, so I'm at least a step closer to the results I want. I would say I've enjoyed the process, but I think that would be a stretch. I've included my most recent attempts below.

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Posted in Community Post Date 10/05/2017