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How to Photograph Jewelry

All you need to know about photographing jewelry like a pro is explained in Better Beaders Episode 138! Guest star Amber will give you the main pointers on starting taking pictures of your finished projects like a professional in no time. With this quick video, you'll be on the way to becoming a better beader as well as a more mature photographer to show your beading creations off to the world!

Episode Transcript


Capturing stunning photographs of your handmade jewelry is essential for showcasing your creations in the best possible light. Whether you're sharing your designs on social media, selling them online, or building a professional portfolio, high-quality images can make all the difference. In this article, we'll walk you through the tips and techniques shared by the experts at Potomac Beads in their Better Beader episode on how to photograph jewelry like a professional.

Materials Needed

  • DSLR camera or smartphone with a high-quality camera
  • Tripod or stable surface
  • White foam board or white poster board
  • Natural or artificial lighting (e.g., lamps, softbox lights)
  • Jewelry props and accessories (e.g., decorative trays, fabric, flowers)
  • Photo editing software (optional)

Step-by-Step Tutorial

  1. Set up your photography space in a well-lit area, preferably near a window for natural light or using artificial lighting to ensure even illumination.
  2. Position your white foam board or poster board as a backdrop to create a clean, distraction-free background for your jewelry pieces.
  3. If using a DSLR camera, adjust your camera settings:
    • Set the aperture to a higher f-stop number (e.g., f/8 or f/11) for greater depth of field and sharper focus.
    • Use a lower ISO setting (e.g., 100 or 200) to minimize image noise.
    • Adjust the white balance to match your lighting conditions for accurate color representation.
  4. If using a smartphone camera, consider using the manual or pro mode to adjust focus, exposure, and white balance settings for optimal results.
  5. Mount your camera on a tripod or place it on a stable surface to minimize camera shake and ensure sharp images.
  6. Arrange your jewelry pieces on the backdrop, experimenting with different compositions and angles to showcase the designs effectively.
  7. Incorporate props and accessories to add visual interest and context to your jewelry photographs, such as decorative trays, fabric, or natural elements like flowers or leaves.
  8. Take multiple shots from various angles and distances to provide a comprehensive view of your jewelry pieces.
  9. Review your images and select the best shots for editing and showcasing.
  10. If desired, use photo editing software to make minor adjustments to brightness, contrast, color saturation, and cropping to enhance the overall appearance of your jewelry photographs.

Customization Ideas & Inspiration

  • Experiment with different backdrops and textures, such as wood, stone, or textured fabric, to create unique and eye-catching compositions.
  • Play with lighting techniques, such as using reflectors or diffusers, to manipulate shadows and highlights for added depth and dimension.
  • Incorporate storytelling elements into your jewelry photographs by styling them with complementary props or in real-life settings to evoke a specific mood or theme.
  • Explore flatlay photography techniques to showcase multiple jewelry pieces together in an artfully arranged composition.


By following these expert tips and techniques from the Better Beader episode, you'll be well on your way to capturing professional-quality photographs of your handmade jewelry. Remember to experiment with different setups, compositions, and lighting to find what works best for your unique designs. With practice and patience, you'll develop an eye for creating stunning jewelry images that effectively showcase your skills and creativity.

We hope this guide has inspired you to elevate your jewelry photography game. Share your beautiful creations with us in the comments below or tag us on social media – we can't wait to see what you come up with!

For more helpful tips and beading inspiration, be sure to check out other episodes in the Better Beader series by Potomac Beads.

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