For a jewellery brand of any size, a photoshoot is a big investment : in money and in time.

Young designers who organise their first photoshoot often comes with a lot of questions. We are presenting here some of them which we hope will help anyone planning a photoshoot.

There are a lot to think of when organising a photography session:  concept, props, location (venue or studio), with or without models, where the images will be used (do you need a banner shape, a portrait, a landscape or a square or all of that?), the resolution of the files (are you planning a regular social media / PR use or will you print a large billboard or poster for a trade show?),  the level of quality of the photographs, the budget, etc..

There are 3 elements that will strongly give a direction to the other variables:

  • how many images you need
  • what type of photographs are needed: packshot, lifestyle, still life or a mix of those? Read our article on E-commerce Photography
  • your budget

Depending on the number of pictures needed and your budget, you get a rough idea of the money you can spend per image. 

If all the pictures are product images against a white background, this will determine the level of quality you can get : the more budget you have, the more time the jewellery photographer can spend lighting the piece and the longer the jewellery retoucher can work on the imagery.  For example, we shoot basic jewellery pack shot where we spend roughly 10-15 minutes per image, but we also shoot very high-end product shots on which we spend up to 4 hours per picture.  The result and the quality is of course very different between those 2 extremes.  There are a wide range of different options in between.  This also depends on the jewellery itself.  If the piece is not heavily set and in pristine conditions (no scratches or dirt), around 30 to 45 minutes shoot results in a very good result.

If you are after still life or lifestyle images, you have a lot more variables to play with.  Still life are usually images without any model, while lifestyle photographs feature a model.

If your budget is tight, we often advise to get creative and take the still life route:  you don’t have the model costs and you probably shoot the project in studio avoiding location or venue fees, as well as a mobile studio. It is sometimes better to create simpler, more easily achievable images of great quality, rather than a complicated location photoshoot and have no budget left for higher level of retouching. At the end, it is all about the visual impact of the jewellery imagery.

When allocating your budget, the level of quality should always be your priority. You don’t always have to go for the top, but it is important to budget enough lighting and retouching time to get a great result.

If you have a medium budget, you can choose to spend a large part of it on props for a still life shoot, for example working with a paper artist or a set designer, or if you are looking for a more lookbook feel, hire a model.  A model jewellery photoshoot can be organised at the studio, outdoor, or in an amazing location (hiring a venue will definitely add to the overall spend).

The above elements are some pointers on how to organise and plan your jewellery photoshoot.  The best is often to start by your number of images, the types and the budget. We can take it from there to help you a shoot that gives the right results (both in terms of creativity and quality) depending on your brand’s DNA and positioning.

With jewellery clients, we usually work on a mood board, sharing a secret board on pinterest to clearly identify their creative requirements: colour tones, set up, locations, positions of hands for example.  Follow us on pinterest.

Photography is the foundation of a great brand presence on social media.  Since Instagram has increase its power of attraction, the importance of great jewellery images have risen to a new high, so planning and discussing a photoshoot with the team beforehand is absolutely vital. Discover our packshot and still life jewellery photography and our model jewellery photography.






Franck Jehanne