My wife and I have a large collection of beautiful ceramic pieces in our home. They were all made by artist Eileen Sackman. I spent some time photographing them today, and she kindly gave me permission to post them here. Eileen has a webpage which features much more of her work, including several new pieces.
For these images, I used a simple black velvet background in addition to a red velour backdrop. These solid backgrounds are ideal for photographing artwork as they do not distract the viewer from the actual piece. I used one flash, the Canon 580EXII dialed down to -3, ETTL. This was just enough to fill the shadows without being too overpowering. I also used "live view" to micro focus the Canon 100mm macro lens at 10x magnification for maximum sharpness. An aperture of f8 ensured a large enough depth of field. My ISO was at 800, and the shutter speed set at 0"4. The camera was tripod mounted.