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I Want Sharp Image (New Camera or Macro Lens)

margzxero
Contributor

I have canon 750D, I want a nice sharp/clear image of my jewelry, do I need to invest in macro or buy new camera.

 

Thanks

4 ACCEPTED SOLUTIONS

By 55mm do you mean the 18-55mm kit zoom lens?  

 

A macro lens lens would be sharper and better able to shoot from up close. 

 

Are you using a tripod?  A good solid tripod would help immensely by letting you stop the lens down to f/8 or f/11 for more depth of field since on a tripod you are unconcerned with handheld camera shake and long shutter exposures like full seconds are possible. 

Scott

Canon 5d mk 4, Canon 6D, EF 70-200mm L f/2.8 IS mk2; EF 16-35 f/2.8 L mk. III; Sigma 35mm f/1.4 "Art" EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro; EF 85mm f/1.8; EF 1.4x extender mk. 3; EF 24-105 f/4 L; EF-S 17-55mm f/2.8 IS; 3x Phottix Mitros+ speedlites

Why do so many people say "FER-tographer"? Do they take "fertographs"?

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@margzxero wrote:

I am a freelance product photographer but shooting a jewellery is very hard. I am planning to buy a Canon 5D or better invest in macro lens?

For Macro work the 5D would be a step backwards. The smaller the sensor the larger the depth of field. Going to a larger sensor just means having to use a smaller aperture to compensate for it. You gain nothing, but, a lighter wallet.

View solution in original post

Great, in that case go for the EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS USM Lens instead.

EB
EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and less lenses then before!

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Either but you do need proper exposures.  You do need a post editor like Lightromm or Photoshop.  There are others but these two are the best, IMHO.  You can google 'focus stacking' and get some good hits.

Basically what you do is get different parts of the subject in focus not worrying about the rest that isn't.  The stacking software picks and chooses the sharpest parts of all the shots and 'stacks' them into one photo.

 

 Lo and behold everything is sharp!  Smiley Happy

EB
EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and less lenses then before!

View solution in original post

62 REPLIES 62


@margzxero wrote:

I am a freelance product photographer but shooting a jewellery is very hard. I am planning to buy a Canon 5D or better invest in macro lens?


Dude, no offense, but I can't help but wonder what your payment is on this "assignment."

 

If your "payment" is in the form of a few kind words on the jewelers' site and a publication "credit" to boost your freelance "career," I would think twice about running out to buy a 5D and L glass. 

 

Maybe invest a bit of money in some books and some photography classes?

TCampbell
Elite
Elite

The macro lens will have not only the ability to focus at a much closer distance, they also typically have the ability to resolve finer levels of detail than the average lens.

 

However... there's more to getting the shot than just the camera & lens.

 

You'll need a tripod.

 

You may need to use a technique called "Focus Stacking" (which relies on software) if the depth of field required is greater than you can easily achieve at very close focusing distance with high focal length lenses.   This involves not only a tripod, but even a focusing rail may be helpful.

 

Lighting is also tricky.  Shiny jewelry is basically like having lots and lots of "mirrrored" surfaces.  They reflect whatever can be seen in each "mirror".  So you may need to head down to the craft store and invest in some white foam-core boards as well as some black foam-core boards so you can control what shows up in each reflection (these boards are placed out of frame.  Also, as is always the case with lighting, a broad lighting source (e.g.  shooting through diffusing screens or using soft-boxes) will provide light that doesn't create harsh well-defined shadows.  

 

Lastly, the camera lens will typically reveal flaws that aren't easily visible under normal inspection.  So you may be using Photoshop to touch up the jewelry.

 

The camera body is fine.  In fact, nearly any camera body will do the job.  You wont be relying on features that test the performance of the camera.  ISO isn't a problem (you'll be providing plenty of light that you wont need to boost ISO), the focus system wont matter (you'll be using manual focus).  I prefer to use tethering software in live-view so I have a very large view of my subject on the computer monitor and I can put the focus exactly where I want it.  I don't rely on an auto-focus point.

 

Software that offers "focus peaking" may be beneficial (I use something called Kuuvik Capture for this).  Focus peaking causes a sort of sparkly static-like edge to appear on any subject where the software detects you've achieved optimum focus.  It's ane easy way to visual what is "in" focus vs. "out" of focus.

 

Tim Campbell
5D III, 5D IV, 60Da

John_SD
Whiz

@margzxero wrote:

I have canon 750D, I want a nice sharp/clear image of my jewelry, do I need to invest in macro or buy new camera.

 

Thanks


I think you need to practice more. 

 

I am just an amateur and a relative beginner at that. So feel free to disregard everything I'm about t o say.

 

But if you are unable to take a "nice sharp/clear image" of your jewelery, could it be that you don't have the technique to be able to do so? Do you have the proper lighting equipment, expertise and composition skills to do what you are trying to do?

 

Are you shooting in aperature priority mode? Have you set your aperature to f11 or smaller, and still can't get a sharp image? Are your hands shaky, or are you moving around? What is your shutter speed?

 

You can spend thousands on high-end gear and lenses, but if you lack the knowledge and skill to take a clear photo, why would you pour thousands of dollars down the drain on equipment that is beyond your ability to use?

 

 

margzxero
Contributor

fs23.jpg

 

This is the result now with f/11 focus stacking (maybe not perfect, just testing). tripod with 2 secs delay, w/ 2 flash. kit lens 18-55mm, still in raw files.

 

any more suggestion to get the clarity of the diamond, I already tried to change the position of the flash.

 

Thanks

Nice!

Did you get or do you have Lightroom?  If you do you might try to add some 'Clarity' to the shot.  It is a slider setting in LR.  Do it after you do the focus stacking but don't go overboard. Less is more!

EB
EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and less lenses then before!

my boss needs more clarity in diamond for brochure, should i experiment more on light or do I badly need a macro lens to get that clarity.

 

Thanks

That is still your photo with just some post editing done in LR.  I upped the Clarity slider to about 50.

 

 Of course a better dedicated macro lens is going to produce better shots.  How much better and whether it is worth it, is up to you but macro lenses are tuned to do just this type of work.

EB
EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and less lenses then before!


@margzxero wrote:

my boss needs more clarity in diamond for brochure, should i experiment more on light or do I badly need a macro lens to get that clarity.

 

Thanks


I think it's time for a reality check. Since you're evidently doing this photography as part of your day job, and since the results you're getting are not acceptable for inclusion in a professionally produced brochure, you'd better step back and admit that you're underequipped and over your head before you dig the hole any deeper. My suggestion would be that you ask your boss to let you engage a professional photographer. If this is just a one-time thing, let him/her finish the job and be done with it. If the requirement is that you learn how to do it right, make sure the professional is one who can and will help you assess your equipment needs and get you on the right track. If possible, sign up for a photography course at your local trade school or community college. The advice you're getting in this forum is from people who are mostly skilled and knowledgeable, but who don't understand your situation very well. If your reputation is at stake, you probably need better than that.

Bob
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania USA

My previous company is satisfied with my work on clothes and some accessories without diamond. 

A little Clarity added to your shot in LR.

 

original.jpg

EB
EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and less lenses then before!
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