It sounds like you have a solid game plan for your upcoming competition. Best of luck to you! Yes, capturing nice reflections can present a bit of a challenge but it's certainly worth the extra effort. Many of my seashells have interesting textures that provide a wonderful playground for the interplay of light and shadow. I light them from an oblique angle to achieve an effect very much like viewing a first or third quarter moon photograph. The seashells appear to emerge from the blackness of outer space!Mikehit said:A nice set there, Tony.
Coincidentally I have been photographing against a gloss black base and black board this weekend (for a local club competition) and it has got the creative thoughts going. It can be very effective as you have shown, especially if you can get the reflection right.
I love astronomy. Here's an aquarium photo of a jellyfish that I've titled "Inner Space Meets Outer Space." I think it has a real outer space feel about it! The particles floating within the tank appear very much like "stars." Hand-held, no cropping.
Inner Space Meets Outer Space