Photographing Artwork

Photographing and Uploading Artwork for IB Examination

Especially when photographing artwork for your IB or university portfolio, make sure your photos have the following qualities:

- in focus (not blurry)
- appropriate lighting (no reflections or shadows; soft, even lighting)
- cropped to remove unnecessary background space/information
- edited in Photoshop (or similar software) to correct curves
- Not distorted (rectangular 2-D works appear rectangular)
- Effective documentation of the work (does it accurately represent your beautiful studio work?)
- edited in Photoshop to correct “curves” and, if necessary, brightness/contrast and color balance


1. Use high-quality digital camera with at least 8 megapixels.

2. Pay attention to light (outside on on overcast day is best.) Make sure the light on your work is soft and even, with no shadows or glare (reflections.)

3. If photographing a regular, rectangular drawing or painting, make sure the rectangle is not distorted when you take the picture. If there is a lot of distortion, you will have problems cropping your image later.

4. If photographing a sculpture, take photos from multiple angles. You may want to make a gif or movie file to show your piece from multiple views.


1. Use the crop tool to remove the background from your image.

2. Go to “Layer” –> “New adjustment layer”

Then, use “curves” and “brightness/contrast” to correct your image.

3. When you’re ready to save, go to “File” –> “save as” and save it as a .JPEG.
Save your work in the following format “FirstnameLastname_IWBpg1″ or “FirstnameLastname_StudioWork1_Title”

File name examples:


4. In the “JPEG Options” window, use the slider to choose an image quality that is a little bit less than 1.0 MB (try for 800-900 KB.) (In Photoshop, this sometimes looks like “1 M” or “800-900K”