Jewelry holder for photos

I pulled from the archives suggestions for a material that could be
used to hold rings, etc. while taking photos. One of the most
suggested products was Clear QuakeHold Gel. I purchased it and it
doesn’t work, it’s great for preventing things from sliding, but
doesn’t have the strength to actually hold anything in position.
The material I’m looking for has been used on ACNTv, HSN & QVC…
does anyone out there know what the name of this stuff is?

Terri Collier
Dallas, TX

    I pulled from the archives suggestions for a material that
could be used to hold rings, etc. while taking photos. 

Hi Terry, I have never tried this… but do you think you could use a
hot glue gun? I would think you would be able to remove the glue
easily if it were heated. Just a thought.

DanielBe Jewelry

Prop wax. If your photo set up includes a piece of glass, you can
use “prop wax” from a professional photography store to hold up
rings. You can hide it underneath the ring.

Elaine Luther
Chicago area, Illinois, USA
Certified PMC Instructor

    I pulled from the archives suggestions for a material that
could be used to hold rings, etc. while taking photos.  One of the
most Terri Collier 

Hi Terri; I have used a hot glue gun sucessfully for this purpose. A
little dab of hot glue, hold the article in place for a few seconds,
and voila!

David L. Huffman

Terry, I can’t remember what the brand name of the stuff is, but I
use this blue stuff that they sell for tacking pictures to the wall.
Its kind of like taffy and it doesn’t leave a residue really, just a
little haze on shiny things that you can wipe right off with a selvit
or sunshine cloth. I like it a lot when I need to use it. I used to
be in advertising and the product photographers used whitish putty
stuff that is made just for photographers. Professional lighting gets
really hot, so they have to have specific stuff that won’t melt in
the heat. You can get it from bigger photo supply places that sell to
commercial photographers or places that sell props and backgrounds.
Setting wax works well as long as you are not using professional
photo lights or any kind of lighting that gets hot because it will
melt it. (I know because I used to use it).

If you are taking digital pictures for the internet, you can get away
with murder because you can just retouch whatever you use as a prop
out of the picture if its visible. I get my fingers in the pictures
all the time. I crop them out or erase them with the airbrush tool. I
sell a lot of inexpensive stuff on eBay, so I can’t spend a lot of
time on setting up and shooting. I try to take nice looking pictures
as quickly as possible, so what I’ve gotten into using is broken
glass pieces. I “prop” jewelry on the sharp edge or side or just use
the blue putty to stick it on the face of the glass. I shoot right
through the glass like a window or hold it horizontally. I can even
put risers under a piece of glass and shoot it from overhead to get a
drop shadow. I often put fake flowers in coordinating colors in the
background and shoot through glass. The flowers are way in the back
and end up blurred, which is just what I want. For fine jewelry I use
a piece of light gray paper taped inside my shooting box which gives
a gradient background. The only evidence of the glass is the edge of
it, which I just smudge out. It takes me just a few seconds to bring
in a photo, adjust the lighting, reduce the size, smudge out anything
I don’t want and then save it. I’ve thought about polishing the glass
edge so that I get even less of it, but I haven’t gotten around to
that yet. I have a nice selection of broken glass that I can prop
rings on or drape necklaces over. I’ve attached a link below so you
can see a sample photo I’ve taken using broken glass for a prop. For
this photo I used an almost square piece of glass and just stuck the
barrette on the corner and shot it with fake flowers in the
background. I was holding the glass on the lower left of the photo
when I took the picture. After taking the photo I pulled it into the
computer, cropped out my fingers, smudged out the glass edge,
increased the lightness, shrunk it down a dinky bit (20% probably)
and then saved it at 50% quality. I always shrink the photos down at
least 10 or 20 percent because it crisps up the image. Because my
pictures are usually for fairly inexpensive things on eBay, I’m not
that concerned with “print quality” photos. I optimize the color
pallet and squish them down to as small as possible. The sample is
about 17kb…which is pretty good and still leaves an acceptable
image for what I’m doing. Here’s the link:

I use a 3rd hand with a lot of tape around the jaws to hold the
glass once in a while, but mostly I just hold the glass and shoot.

If I am taking a picture of earrings with posts, I use the blue
stuff as an earring nut to hold earrings on the edge of the glass. If
your piece is light, you can just roll up a piece of the blue stuff
and stick your jewelry on it. You just use whatever size wad you need
and stick it on the back of your jewelry item smack it onto the glass
and shoot. The blue stuff is not so good at holding weight (like say
a heavy platinum ring at a jaunty angle), but the white photographers
stuff is. I learned a lot of tricks from the pro photographers, but
the best thing I’ve learned in digital photography is the magic of
the airbrush and smudge tools to get rid of things I don’t want in
the photo. I used to use setting wax to prop stuff up, but I don’t
really have the time to be cleaning glass and merchandise all day.
Mostly I just wipe off the glass on my pants leg and stick my thing
on it and shoot. If there are dust specs on the glass that show in
the photo, I just smudge them out with a quick button click.

I know this is WAY beyond what you asked, but maybe you can use some
of this info or somebody else can!


I pulled from the archives suggestions for a material that could
be used to hold rings, etc. while taking photos 

Hi Terri, I use Silicone Ear Plug stuff (from the drugstore). This
material has a clay like consistency, is slightly sticky, milky
translucent color, and will not melt under hot lights. It can be
reused (but will get dirty from your fingers). A tiny bit is usually
what it takes to hold something. I heard about this stuff from Paul
Gross, a very talented jeweler in NH. HTH, Best Regards from Kate
Wolf in Portland, Maine, hosting quality workshops.

Hi Terri, I have been using the soft, red utility wax for years with
great success. Just a tiny bit will do and unless your shanks are
very thin it is easy to hide. Good luck!


I’ve been told Museum Gel is what you’re looking for. I’ve seen it
in catalogs like Solutions or Improvements.

Janet Kofoed

    I know this is WAY beyond what you asked, but maybe you can
use some of this info or somebody else can! Mardel 

Yes, Mardel somebody can use this info! I, for one, found it very
interesting. I spend so much time on set up of my photo box, that I
get frustrated and then find none of the photos turned out
right…then go back for another session. One of my main problems is
retouching. I either have the wrong program or am lousy at it. Can
you tell me what program or system you use? Thanks, Thomas Blair 

Hi Mardel, Thanks for the post. I was just wondering what lighting
you use. The photo looks great!

DanielBe Jewelry

Wow! I would like to thank everyone that responded to my inquiry, as
always you’re all the best. I’ve got plenty ideas to play with now.
Mardel, the photo looks great! Thanks for sharing… I only hope
my photos look that great after a little practice, I’m using the
Cloud Dome.

Take care and thanks again

Terri Collier
Terri’s Place
Dallas, TX