Turning clay into the pictures or so called "pottery photography"
In this age, the ability to make strong digital images of your work is second only to the ability to make strong work. You could make the best pots on earth, but if you don’t know how to photograph them, few people will ever know it. Every artist sees their work through the eyes of a creator, a much more critical and intimate perception of the object than the general public is likely to have. However Ceramics are easier to photograph than you might think. You can do this only with a single light and soft box but for better results you mush use more complex solutions. Shooting your own work is an opportunity to show the viewer what you see as the most important qualities of your art. We aree constantly working on refining our photo setup.
For us, the process is complete once the pictures are taken and edited. At that point, It is ready for sale, and we have documentation of it, to refer to later or to use for slide presentations. Every single piece we make gets photographed from at least 5 angles. We dont have a large photo studio, very expensice camera or anything like that. All of our photography takes place on a simple setup, right on my the table.
1. The Camera
We use Panasonic GX7. It was sold last year from amazon on a great price and we buy it from there. The camera has everything needed for our photography.
The main feature that we would use vital to the studio setting is Manual White Balance. Additionally, the ability to set the aperture, exposure and the focus can come in handy for this ceramic shots. I think you can make any camera bring good images as long as you are using it in the right way.
The lights themselves are 2x250 watt, that I put into the cheapest possible clamp lamp.It is worth spending some time playing around with the position of these lights to get the best possible results for your own work.
A light tent or box is a contraption with translucent sides that diffuses light coming from multiple sides. This allows for shadow-less lighting against a simple, solid background. You can purchase a light tent as part of a kit or you can buy only the tent from amazon.
The standard set-up this light tent is to place the tent on some kind of table with the light sources directly opposite each other on each side and the tripod with the camera centered in front. Placing the tent on a table makes it easier to see and work with your tripod for shooting.
4. Camera Setup
Begin by shooting in aperture priority mode or manual mode with an ISO of 100. Choose your aperture based on the look that you want to receive in the image (a wide aperture like f/1.8 for a narrow depth of field and a lot of blur or a narrow aperture like f/22 for a wide depth of field and crisp focus across the entire subject). Food and product photographs often utilize wide apertures and selective blur to make food and products look more appealing, while product shots of crafts and handmade goods look best with a narrow aperture to keep the entire item into focus. You need to set your focus using the part of your subject that is closest to the camera.