Thursday, April 30, 2015

Imported Jewelry and Imaging for Amazon

With the explosion of jewelry vendors vying for Amazon's attention has had to tighten up what is considered the primary product image rules for acceptable use. Hence the 20 page long Jewelry Style Guide. While Amazon has always had these guidelines in place, certification staff has really been towing the line and images that may have squeaked by in the past won't cut it anymore.
White means white period. Not RGB 254,254,254 but 255,255,255, and sharp as a tack front to back. Quite a challenge when we are working with macro distances. This means shooting at f/22 or higher and requiring gobs of quality light only possible with very powerful (and hot) continuous halogen lights or pricey studio quality strobes.  We choose strobes. The halogen lights are so hot they overpower the A/C and heat the studio to uncomfortable levels in about an hour.
Following are an example of some rejected images.
 Wrong layout, focus, and not on white.

Not on white and focus.

All of the above would be ok for Ebay, Craig's List and other auction sites, but they fall short because of some technical flaws. We noticed the colors on the failed images were a bit off which may  have caused customer satisfaction issues because the images don't actually reflect the products true colors.
Here are the approved shots the client had us do after the in-house method failed. (Please note: there is always some color shifting because of individual monitor/browser rendering.)

Following the style guide the background measures
255,255,255 and everything is in focus. Colors
are calibrated and 100% accurate.

Friday, April 3, 2015

Restoring an old photo

Restoring old photo prints is something I do just for Photoshop practice. There are far better re-touchers out there than me with my meager skills. Today a neighbor asked me if I could take an old photo print scan it into the computer and erase the background as she wanted to share the photo on Facebook but was not happy with the baked goods background. Here is the raw scan...

Raw scan of the 5x7 print after cropping.

After scanning the print at 300dpi, I spent about 20 minutes  extracting the background.

After removing the background,

Workable but my neighbor is a very nice person and deserves a better image for her Facebook avatar. Back to Photoshop...2 hours later, a new background, color correction and re-lighting...

Unfortunately some of the highlights  were blown out 
in the print a little beyond Photoshop's ability to recover