Diamonds photography – basics

Think only of Marilyn Monroe and her song “Diamonds are a girl’s best friend,” or Shirley Bassey and “Diamonds are forever”: both these popular modern songs reflect the everlasting fascination that we have for this gem.
Gems are not only rare and beautiful but for some people also beautiful. Long time there was no solution for cutting it that is why  many people believed that it’s so  special. Romanians believed that it a piece of falling stars, Greeks that its a gods tears. Basically it was always a point of interest.
Today it’s a popular investment, jewelry material and a perfect gift 🙂
To estimate market value specialists use 4 characters called 4C  1/ carat , 2/colour, 3/ clarity, 4/ cut.


To make a perfect shot we must remember about 4C and present it properly.

1. Recommended equipment

Typical macro equipment is  Camera (best is Canon 70D/Canon 5 mark D) with Canon Macro 100mm extended by teleconverter Kenko 1.4 X

2. Necessary  accessories:

We can use different backgrounds


And different turntables instead of default transparent one (black, white, silver)


Also we must care about cleanness by accessories and tweezers.


3. Setting up

The most popular brilliant cut we are setting on its side (pavilion), what is giving us 45° angle to see cult point. To see the culet properly we must also set up camera body in 45°.
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4. Depth of field and transparency

The distance between cult point and table it’s a few millimeters but the lens with teleconverter has limited depth of field so the Aperture (Av) must be between 13 and 20. For the crisp and clarity we use a short shutter speed (Tv) ca. 1/100. For proper brightness we use ISO. (For video we can use other settings for shutter speed because it doesn’t matter in recording)

5. Lights

We never shine from top! Top light and spotlight will destroy facets and hearts and arrows performance and cover all inclusions. The picture will be useless. See the left example below (bad) and the right (proper).

6. Presets

a/ Top menu with dots (MODeVid 2.0 version) has a special one in BLUE with settings for diamonds. It will automatically set up your camera. Please read comments in settings.
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2/ Mask & Photo – There’s also a setting for automatic background removal for diamonds in Mask&Photo mode (more..)
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7. Next steps:

iko3 I enhance contrast and brightness and lower the saturation with pure white diamonds
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iko2 with this example I use “object detection” for background removal but also can use MASK&PHOTO
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I set the TOLERANCE on 90
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I exchange transparency to white color
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also background exchange/removal type can be set in APPLICATION -> settings
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When we have all that settings done we can start also diamonds in 360°, read: Dancing Diamonds 

Written and photographed by:
Dominika Apanasewicz

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