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The Dark Room -- Photo Editing and Picture Taking. Advice, tutorials, questions on all things photoshop, photo editing, and taking pictures of beads or glass.

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  #1  
Old 2005-12-14, 6:20pm
catherineh catherineh is offline
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Okay, I've been struggling to take pictures of my jewelry with little success. I don't think my camera has a good super macro mode. All of my pictures are too small and seem to become blurry when cropped.

Any camera suggestions for jewelry photos? My budget is under $400.

Also, I'd like an editing program where I can put a picture within a picture. That way I can highlight details in the same photo as the piece. I use a web template, so I get only one pic per piece and that has caused some problems.

Anyone who can help?

-Catherine
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  #2  
Old 2005-12-14, 6:42pm
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Everyone told me the Nikon Coolpix 4800. I got it at the 350 range and it is the best investment I ever made. The macro will pick up every detail and no clean up unless you want to. At Ritz Camera I got Picture Fix. and Scrapbook they combine and create some great pics with the detailed piece in the corner. And the programs were only 10.00 ea.
Geneva
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  #3  
Old 2005-12-14, 6:48pm
RyanTheNumberImp RyanTheNumberImp is offline
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I have a Hp Photosmart R607 which has an amazing super-macro and was super cheap when I bought it (like 150$ can and that was a long time ago). If their still selling them they would probbably be more like 80$ us and it came with a lithium battery and a recharger!
Here is an example of a picture taken with it:

It was edited a bit in Macromedia Fireworks (removing the backround and adding the shadow)
Fireworks can put pictures within pictures and a lot more but it is slightly harder to use because it is mainly a vector editing program. I'm sure there are some free programs that will do what you want.
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  #4  
Old 2005-12-14, 7:50pm
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Hi,

I bought the Nikon Coolpix 4600, last years model, for 175$ and I LOVE IT!

Happy shopping, Dawn
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  #5  
Old 2005-12-15, 6:18am
catherineh catherineh is offline
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Geneva-

Thank you! I'll start looking at Nikon cameras. I'm surprised that the programs are so cheap - I'll have to do some Christmas shopping for me.

-Catherine
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  #6  
Old 2005-12-15, 6:20am
catherineh catherineh is offline
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Ryan-

Thank you! That picture looks great. I never would have guess that the camera used was so inexpensive, although that is great news.

What is "vector editing?"

-Catherine
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  #7  
Old 2005-12-15, 6:21am
catherineh catherineh is offline
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Dawn-

Two votes for Nikon. I think I'll have much more fun shopping now that I'm getting an idea of different cameras and programs to look for. I'm already feeling less frustrated.

-Catherine
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  #8  
Old 2005-12-15, 6:38am
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Make that 3 votes for the Nikon!! I just picked one up too, and i love it!! I have the 4meg, and it is wonderful. My neighbor has the 6 meg, and i have been getting better pics with the 4...go figure! Under $200
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  #9  
Old 2005-12-15, 6:44am
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Catherine,

I just did this search a few months ago and I found out there are a lot of happy Torcher's with Coolpix's. That is why I bought one.

Happy Shopping Dawn
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  #10  
Old 2005-12-15, 7:18am
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You don't need a macro mode. I have a macro lens for my camera and never use it. A good zoom (non-digital) is all you need. Taking pictures up close to something often result in flat pictures with little depth. Good lighting is much more important than a good camera.

Having said that, I use a Canon EOS 300D, but I use it for a lot more than jewelry photography and internet applications, so it was worth it for me.

This photo was taken from about 9" way from the subject (the bead is about 1" long):

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Old 2005-12-15, 2:11pm
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Mine is Nikon Coolpix 4800, great Macro mode. Before I use Canon Powershoot A65, its great, I love it, but it can not come as close to the subject as I wanted it to, so I buy my Nikon. Here's a sample of result from my Nikon:



I still think Macro mode is important especially for bead photography. Always use a tripod! (Tripod eliminates shaking and for me, its a must. Any tripod will do).

Just fyi, there's a thread about photography a few days ago, people was sharing techniques, might help too: Photo Thread

Have fun shopping!

.
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Last edited by born2snooze; 2005-12-15 at 2:19pm.
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Old 2005-12-15, 2:19pm
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I still have my CoolPix 990 and love it! I'd like to upgrade as I use my camera for other financial ventures where more megapixels would help me, but I love this ol' thing!
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  #13  
Old 2005-12-16, 8:29am
catherineh catherineh is offline
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Lynn-

Thank you! Nikon is definitely popular and I'm glad to hear that they are so reasonably priced.

-Catherine
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  #14  
Old 2005-12-16, 8:31am
catherineh catherineh is offline
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Chad-

Thank you for the advice. Do you have an optical zoom recommendation? I've seen a lot of 3x optical.

As far as lighting, do you use a photo studio setup or special bulbs? I tried to make my own "light tent" with a storage box and clip on lights. I read about it on some forum, but it really didn't work for me.

Thanks,
Catherine
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  #15  
Old 2005-12-16, 8:32am
catherineh catherineh is offline
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Edna-

Thank you for the camera suggestion and also for the photo thread. I have a lot of reading and practicing to do.

-Catherine
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  #16  
Old 2005-12-16, 8:32am
catherineh catherineh is offline
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Lunesse-

Great picture! Thank you for the camera suggestion.

-Catherine
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  #17  
Old 2005-12-16, 11:04am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by catherineh
Chad-

Thank you for the advice. Do you have an optical zoom recommendation? I've seen a lot of 3x optical.

As far as lighting, do you use a photo studio setup or special bulbs? I tried to make my own "light tent" with a storage box and clip on lights. I read about it on some forum, but it really didn't work for me.

Thanks,
Catherine
The more optical zoom you can get, the better. My camera is a SLR, so when I want more zoom, I just switch the lens. But 3X should be all you need.

I use cheap flood lights I got from Lowe's. They are currently loaded with GE Reveal bulbs, but I can't see much difference between them and regular bulbs. Here's what mine looks like...



I usually just use a light on either side. The small light on top is just one that I use for positioning. The flood lights get hot after a while, so I turn them off between photos and use the small one to see what I'm doing (I have all the other lights in the room off).
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Old 2005-12-16, 11:22am
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No problems Catherine, I love photography, always fun to talk about this. I use to have a homemade set up for tabletop photography, but decided to buy light cube, cause its convenience. And I got the photo flood reflector from Smith-Victor website. Great selection there!

And oh, I use daylight bulbs.

I found a website where the owner explain the photo trick, its a bit different but interesting (using shadow box) here's the link, just for fun! :Amy O' Connel

And just 1 more info sharing, I found a great complete kit that is cheaper than Tabletop studio, its got Smith-Victor photoflood! here's the link: cheap & cool kit

Have fun!
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Last edited by born2snooze; 2005-12-16 at 1:01pm.
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