After learning how to light bottles of liquid, I thought jewelry would provide some opportunities to experiment and learn some new things. Using the lighting setup from the bottle shots just did not work, lighting from the sides and back regardless of what I tried just did not seem to work very well and just did not look very interesting. . after a lot of messing around, the solution I came up with was to light the pocket watch from directly above. However, as I don’t have a boom arm a little bit of improvising was required. I made use of an old light reflector frame removing the silver cover and then placing a circular diffusion reflector on top of the frame, I had to prop it up against another light stand in order to get the balance right, but I worked fairly well, I then used sheets of tracing paper to diffuse the light further, until I had removed as much as the highlight glare as possible. I used one light and positioned a small piece of silver reflective card to try and bound some light back in to the lid, this really lifted the image and made a lot of difference. As my macro lens is on loan to a friend, I used a 55mm prime that was the same lens I used for the bottles.
It’s amazing how much dust settled on the black Perspex and the Pocket Watch and I only really noticed it when I zoomed in on one of the images, but it is very distracting when you get the image into lightroom, but at least you can clear us some of the dust bunnies.
I tried various f/stops whilst setting up the lighting, but f/8 at 1/125th seemed to work nicely with the lighting and the depth of field. Had I had the macro lens I think I would have gone for f/11. Anyway, the tracing paper is really helping diffuse the light for this type of photography and you can bend it into whatever shape you like. One of the best things about this kind of photography is you don’t need a load of space or expensive kit to create some nice looking images. As a starting point all you need is a sheet of Perspex, some tracing paper, a speedlight or lamp, some spare time and patience together with a little imagination. A lot of this work is trial and error, but am really learning a lot about light and lighting.