Daily Archives: January 29, 2011

Thanks to LeAnn, I remember “Keep it Simple.”

When LeAnn, of Summers Studio, replied to my post from yesterday, she asked me to let her know if I figured out the reflection thing. She makes beautiful ceramic beads, pendants and clasps, but with the shiny glazes she sometimes sees more reflection in her photos than she would like. (She also does fabulous work with bronze clay.)

My response was to tell her about the milk jug trick. It is easy and inexpensive. However, in my obsession to set up little vignettes for photographing my jewelry, I forgot to give my handy gallon milk jug a try. What was I thinking?  I wasn’t.

A number of years ago, Ronna Lugosch told me about this trick when we were taking a keum-boo workshop from Jayne Redman at Haystack. I was wondering if I should buy one of those “Cloud Dome” systems to help me take better photos of my jewelry. “You don’t need to spend the money on that,” she replied. Just use a plastic milk jug!”  And she proceeded to tell me what to do: Cut the bottom out of a gallon milk jug, place it over what you want to photograph, and shoot through the hole in the top. (It doesn’t get much simpler than that.)

So I set it up quickly this morning and voila! Easy as pie, or a piece of chocolate cake with a glass of milk. I’ll be remembering two important things as I go through my day:

1. Try the simplest solutions first.    2. It is wonderful to have friends who help you figure things out.

(I also cut a hole in the side of the jug so I could shoot from two different angles.)

The tissue paper is handy to place in front of the big hole if I’m shooting from the top, or on top of the little hole if I am shooting from the side. Tissue paper is another inexpensive way to diffuse light.

The next two photos:  Shot from the top, and same photo cropped.

Next two: Shot from the side and then cropped.

And last, but not least, there is still room inside the jug for you know who…..

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