Nail Art

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Just Like You Picture It - Tips from Techs on Photographing Nails

For many techs, taking pictures of your work allows you to create portfolios for your clients, advertise themselves on Internet sites like MySpace, or share your work with peers on forums and websites. Here are some tips from techs who have made a habit of photographing nails.


Taking good pictures of nails doesn’t require expensive and complicated equipment. Many techs take great shots with only their personal, point-and-shoot pocket digital cameras. But there are a few basic requirements.

A digital view screen - This is an essential feature for photographers just starting out because it immediately shows you what your shot looks like. You can make any necessary adjustments without wasting a single shot.

6-8 megapixels - This is the minimum resolution that you should shoot at. Cameras shooting at lower than 6-8 megapixels will not produce photos that will look good on the web or on paper. Make sure that the camera is set to the highest resolution.

Macro setting - The macro setting is usually denoted with a flower symbol and it automatically adjusts your camera to take better shots of things close up.

Tripod compatability - For close-up shots on the macro setting, “camera shake” becomes a problem and you’ll want to be able to attach a tripod if necessary for stability.

Flash - You want to have the option of a flash for your shots. Even though you might not use it every time, it is important to always have the option.

Some basic, introductory cameras that fill these requirements are the Nikon s7c, the Canon Powershot sd1000, and the Sony Cybershot DSCW55. But you can also research cameras on the web. Digital Photography Review, at, is a good website that offers reviews on all of the latest digital cameras.


Tripods are not essential for close-up nail shots, but they do help, especially if you are using a smaller pocket digital camera. The reason why tripods are useful is because when the camera is set to macro, the slightest jiggle of the hand can blur your photo.

Preato and Gibson use small tripods to steady their cameras for their shots, and there is also an interesting new tripod on the market that lends itself to nail pictures.

The Joby Gorillapod has three bendable legs to achieve a number of different angles, and the lightweight and small design make it easy to carry around.

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