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Old Sep 28, 2002, 2:47 AM   #1
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Default gemstone photos - need help!

Hi all,

I need to take close-up picture of gemstones.
My digital is the Nikon 4500 and I have bought a "Digital Optics 0.45 pro High Defintion with Macro".

So, my concern isn't the macro but rather the LIGHTING and the way to do it. What artificial light do I need? Do I need to take pics with the light coming from above? in which case, where do I display the camera, side by side with the light?
Basically what is the best way to take a nice gem pic from above - showing the play of light in the gem ?

Thank for your help, I am a novice!
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Old Sep 29, 2002, 8:24 AM   #2
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I know nothing about gems but believe you might be able to adapt a technique I found useful for coins. Hopefully you will get a reply from a gem photographer but ,if not, you might try this. To use the camera for coin photography I constructed a simple stand to hold the camera mounted on the upright by means of a mini-tripod ball and socket mount. A series of upright dowel rods set in wood blocks hold coins an appropriate distance from the camera. Photographing coins on dowel rod posts allows lighting flexibility and shadow free backgrounds thrown out of focus. The rig is shown near the bottom of my page: http://mywebpages.comcast.net/dougsmit/990nikon.html
This would reguire the gems be large enough to cover the end of the dowel. For lights, I use $10 halogen desk lamps with goose necks that allow easy control of position including slightly from below. Certainly gems, like coins, are individuals and what works best for one won't work for all.
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