A rich variety of over two dozen sea shell beads and sea shells in earth tones.

My brother-in-law sells unique and very attractive necklaces made of sea shells (among other things). Apparently they’re called “statement necklaces” because the shells are integral to the design of the jewelry rather than being incidental add-ons or accents. He also sells some of the components (beads etc.) that make up the necklaces.

Apart from one brief attempt at product photograph when my wife had expressed and interest in making jewelry I’d never attempted this genre. However, he wanted to have some pictures so I thought I’d give it a try. I considered making a do it yourself light tent, but then it occurred to me that we have some large windows where the light streams in early in the morning. We have some translucent blinds that, I thought, might diffuse the light nicely.

So I got out the tripod, arranged a background and we were ready to go. Unfortunately it turned out to be the first cloudy day in a while and no sun was streaming through the windows. We decided to go ahead anyway. The first effort was a test and led us to put a white card in place to reflect back some of the window light.

I’m not really satisfied with the results, but my brother in law seemed to think that he could use them. They’re certainly better than those he had before (taken with an iphone I believe). Would I do it again? If a friend or a family member were to ask me then probably I would (if only to see if I could do it better next time around). But otherwise probably not. It’s not really a form of photography that appeals to me a lot.

Three scallop shells gilded with gold plating strung on woven seed beads.

Square tiles inlaid with the iconic paua abalone linked with wire-wrapped turquoise and agate chips.

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