Photographing Ceramics

Joni7456 Joni9980

Somebody asked me how to photograph ceramics. There’s not one answer to that question.

Here are a few samples of options I have chosen.

The first is a Raku urn by Joni Pevarnik that I photographed. I placed that on a 6 foot piece of textured art board, curved to create a seamless background, and added a diagonally projected background light to add drama. That had lights above and to the sides in front.

The clay art piece, also by Joni Pevarnik, had a lot of textural “folds” so I lighted that from above and behind with a huge (approx. 4 foot) soft box and bounce cards to fill the front. There were no lights in front. This created a beautiful soft light quality and showed the roundness of the base, by allowing the bottom to be in shadow. I also threw in a small light at the right to keep the background from going too dark, placing it behind the piece, but such that some of the light would spill onto the edge to create a bit of rim light. For this one, white foam core was placed under the piece to bounce light up and a vertically hung gray background placed in the back – with a gap of about four feet between.

There are many ways to photograph ceramics; these are but a few.

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