Modahaus is a revolutionary compact and portable photostudio that is so not a light tent!  Don't get me wrong, light tents are useful but they do have some disadvantages.   So when I stumbled upon the very first unit nearly 2 years ago, I really liked what I saw and bought a small one - and never looked back.  My photography continues to improve with time as you will note from my blog tutorials and the new pictures I am starting to load on Etsy.

I am not the only one who made the switch - check out Phototuts' blog post for a review on photography setups he used and why he stopped using his older solutions once he bought his Modahaus units.

The Modahaus range has expanded to the Steady Stands and the photo studios have all been updated with new features such as the smart cases, necklace tabs and holes for fishing lines to hang earrings.  For a limited time, Modahaus is supplying hybrid and double sided backgrounds free with their kits.  These include the dark colors which many crafters have asked for.

backgrounds for the TS 400
Lex McColl of Modahaus recently sent the largest photostudio, the TS400 to me for review.  I tried it out using natural light as well as my Ott lite lamp.  Note that the Modahaus units are great but you also need to know how to use your camera whether you use natural or artificial light.  See links below for additional photography guides. The full TS400 guide is over here as well as that for the mid-sized one, the TS320.

As you can see the TS400 is much larger than the size I currently have.

TS216 vs TS400
The TS 216 is perfect for jewelry makers as we make small things. You can even store it open on a shelf.  I couldn't do that with the TS400 but it still stores very well behind a suitable piece of furniture. Space is a huge issue for most of us. Or more accurately, the beads get higher priority!

The smaller TS216 does pose some difficulties if you wish to photograph larger objects, groups of things or include props. Tutorials are now easier to photograph with the big TS400.  For example, I could easily take this product group picture for the ImpressArt giveaway with the TS400 without struggling with camera angles and so on. The curved background at the back gives what is called an infinity curve - i.e. there is no obvious horizon.

in natural light

Like light tents, the smart case acts as a light diffuser.  Even with the harsh sunlight coming from the window, the case was able to soften the light source and significantly reduce shadows. 

As this model is large, the light tunnel is not self supporting.  I do like using the light tunnel as the slightly reflective surface helps brighten pictures especially those with white backgrounds. So it needs to be propped up either with a Steady Stand or improvise with glasses and glass dishes!

You don't have to make any holes as the unit comes with holes ready for a fishing line to hang earrings on.  If you cannot get the line taut enough, just hang something like a pair of pliers at the back! If there is enough slack, you can just leave the line there.

With the larger unit, I was able to take pictures of the wine charms on glasses with ease. I flipped up the smartcase towards the back for this photo.  I am not a professional photographer and admit I am totally clueless as to lighting. The wonderful subtle color changes in the background are entirely due to the Modahaus and its infinity curve, not me!

raw shot
I generally prefer to use natural light but sometimes do take pictures with lights. I went down to my dark basement and used just my Ott Llite with the light tunnel and no smartcase.  Some of you may remember this brass coiled wire necklace.  It is my largest and chunkiest piece so far. Previously I had to resort to an overhead shot with a Steady Stand to get the whole thing in satisfactorily.  But with the TS400, I was able to easily capture what I needed.

Which background to use is down to personal preference and perhaps the actual design itself.  I didn't think the blue background worked that well with this piece.

The hybrid backgrounds were fun and do add a touch of elegance to the photograph. The stippled sheet was silver on one side and a dark greyish black on the other. 

Silver stippled background
Dark stippled background
And here is the plain dark grey-black matte background. 

There is just one problem with the TS400.  It is still a cat magnet just like light tents!  But it's not comfy like fabric tents so the kitties soon lost interest. Any fur, hair, lint and smudge marks wipe clean!

Taking jewelry pictures is no longer a chore for me - it's all rather fun with the Modahaus photo studios!


If you'd like to win a Modahaus TS400,  please make a comment below. Make sure you leave contact info if you do not have an online shop or blog.

Subscribers need to click on the post title to come to my actual blog. Scroll down and enter your comment. Pick Name/URL. If you don't have a store or blog, leave the URL blank. Please leave an email at the very least so I can contact you easily if you win.

This giveaway is international.

Extra entries if you become or are a blog subscriber or follower etc. If you also do shout outs about this giveaway, those will count as additional entries too! Please say so in the comments.

It ends in a week's time at 6 pm EST Monday, February 11, 2013. I will pick the winner randomly and announce the results as soon as possible after. So be sure to leave a contact email if you don't have an online link or make sure you come back and check! Otherwise I will redraw in a week. Good luck!

Before You Go: 
Original Post by THE BEADING GEM
Jewelry Making Tips - Jewelry Business Tips