Beckie Kengle
Polished by Beckie
I'm Beckie. I manage a self-storage facility. I enjoy photography as a hobby, and I LOVE all things nail polish (ESPECIALLY nail art)!

Hence my blog. I thought this would be a fun place to share my manis and pedis and swatches that I do (often more than once or twice a week!), as well as discussing new favorite colors and brands, and my ever-growing polish collection! I mean, hey, I could have worse addictions, right? ;-)

While China Glaze is my favorite mainstream brand, my newest obsession has become indie polish!! I am continually finding new indie brands to try!

How to take awesome polish bottle macros and choreographed images

I was initially going to add this to my “tips & tricks” post, asthma but decided to write a separate one since the other one is already so long.

Bottle shots are one of my favorite things to photograph! I don’t know why, but there’s just something so fascinating about seeing all those pretty colors and sparkles up close! Here’s one that I took specifically for this post today (Scofflaw Nail Varnish [rain dogs], a limited edition polish).

scofflaw_rain-dogs_LE

When I take my bottle macros, I use my Nikon D700 with Nikon 60mm f/2.8 macro lens and my cute little Foldio portable light box. I place the Foldio on its side (shown in the 2nd image down) because the light reaches the bottles better than when the Foldio is upright. I do not like the backdrops that came with the Foldio, so I bought some black and white felt pieces from the craft section at Walmart, and they work perfectly!

Foldio

I set the polish bottle on a 3/4″ platform (the platform is placed underneath the felt) to raise it up a bit so I don’t have to tilt my camera down. Because I want to shoot the polish bottle straight on, I want the camera to be on the same level as the polish, so I set it on the counter in front of the Foldio. Doing that also keeps the camera steady and avoids motion blur. For all you manual camera users, when I take my bottle macros I adjust my camera settings to 1/160 shutter speed, f/4 aperture, and ISO 1000.

polished by beckie

polish bottle foldio camera set up

This is what my bottle images look like after I’ve done a very minimal amount of adjustments in Lightroom 3 and Photoshop CS6. I save my image in full resolution before I resize and crop it down for Instagram or my blog. This way if I ever need to refer back to my original edit, I can do so without losing any resolution.

Scofflaw Nail Varnish rain dogs LE

And here is a screen shot of the image in Photoshop while I’m cropping the image so you can see how I crop it.

crop screen shot_back

Now I have been taking all of my bottle images with my big girl camera (aka Nikon D700), so for this post I attempted to take a bottle image with my iPhone 5s. Once I got the picture into Photoshop, I realized it was still kind of blurry. I’m thinking if I had pulled my phone back a bit so it could focus better, then I could have cropped it in tight, and it would’ve been in focus. So, it isn’t perfect, but it’s definitely doable.

iphone polish bottle macro

Next up, let’s talk about choreographed polish bottle images. These are also very fun for me to capture. It forces me to get creative, and think outside the box. I mean, you have to when you’re taking pictures of nail polish bottles. 😉

The most important thing when taking these kinds of pictures is light! If you don’t have enough light, your images will be too dark, and possibly blurry or fuzzy. Other than that, it’s all about having fun! Find unusual locations to place the polishes, and include props to make them fun and interesting. Here are a few of my choreographed polish images.

Polish My Life_all-things-vintage-spring-1

 

Polish My Life "holiday collection"

Loaded Lacquer

Loaded Lacquer mixed by hand

Loaded Lacquer nude jiggle trio

Polishes spring cremes

I take the majority of my choreographed bottle images with my Nikon D700 and 50mm f/1.4 or 35mm f/2 lenses. Sometimes I’ll take quick ones with my iPhone too.

So, get out there and have some fun with your polishes!

(All images owned and copyrighted by Beckie Kengle. Please do NOT copy, save or print. For image use, please contact Beckie via email at polishedbybeckie[at]gmail[dot]com)

 

 

 

 

 

 

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“All Things Vintage” Spring 2015 Collection from Polish My Life

I had the opportunity to work with the lovely Shaneka, ambulance of Polish My Life, cialis 40mg on her new spring 2015 collection called “All Things Vintage”. This collection releases on Sunday, epidemic March 1st, at 2p EST.

Polish My Life is one of my favorite indies. Shaneka makes the most amazing creme polishes (cremes are my favorite type of polish EVER), and this new collection has a superb formula (just like all of her other polishes), and also has a new, lustre, pearl-like finish that glides on so smooth and nice! In my opinion, this collection brings back some fond memories of the good ol’ days, and should be on EVERYONE’S must-buy list!!

Polish My Life_all-things-vintage-spring-1

First up is [1950s mint ‘fridge]. This is a dusty, minty green. These polishes could almost go on in one coat if you’re heavy-handed. I prefer two thinner coats for full coverage. Again, this entire collection has a lustre, pearl-like finish that is so beautiful! (my swatch shows this one a little on the neon side, the bottle macro is more accurate to it’s true color)

Polish My Life 1950s mint fridge

Polish My Life_1950s-mint-fridge

Next up is [purple flower power]. This one does change color slightly when it is top-coated, but is still a very beautiful lavender! Purple is one of my favorite colors, and this one is a perfect addition to my purple polish collection! (after posting this, I saw one of the other swatchers mention that if you let the polish dry completely between each layer and before top-coating, then it will not change color!)

Polish My Life purple flower power

Polish My Life_purple-flower-power

Next in line is [coral fedora]. This is such a beautiful coral color!

Polish My Life coral fedora

Polish My Life_coral-fedora

[1970s sienna sofa] is seriously such a unique color, and it is lovely! This is actually in my top 3 picks from this collection! 😉

Polish My Life 1970s sienna sofa

Polish My Life_1970s-sienna-sofa

Next up is my surprise favorite. [retro green scene]. I can’t wear most greens because they just don’t work with my skin tone. But I feel like this one goes nicely with my skin! It’s a nice dusty, avocado-y color. I LOVE it!

Polish My Life retro green scene

Polish My Life_retro-green-scene

Next up is the blue of the bunch. It’s called [springtime blues]. It’s a vibrant blue that is perfect for Spring!

Polish My Life springtime blues

Polish My Life_springtime-blues

And the last beauty in this collection is called [strawberry whip & chill]. It’s a fun, bubblegum pink that looks so yummy! (Edited to add that after I removed this color, I did notice some staining. Most of it came off after I scrubbed my nails gently with Dawn dish soap and a nail brush. I think that 2 layers of base coat would prevent this from happening again.)

Polish My Life strawberry whip & chill

Polish My Life_strawberry-whip-and-chill

To recap, this entire collection is perfect! The formula on each of them is beyond amazing, and they are the best cremes I think I’ve ever used! True story!

So set your alarms and head on over to Shaneka’s Polish My Life shop Sunday, March 1st, 2p EST, to purchase your set of the “All Things Vintage” spring 2015 collection.

Polish My Life_all-things-vintage-spring-2

Disclaimer: this collection was sent to me to photograph and to give an honest review.

(All images owned and copyrighted by Beckie Kengle. Please do NOT copy, save or print. For image use, please contact Beckie via email at polishedbybeckie[at]gmail[dot]com)

 

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Mani Rituals? Do you have any?

Last night I posted a question on Instagram…do you listen to music while doing your nails?

I go back and forth between wanting to watch Netflix on my iPad Mini, discount
 or listening to music from Pandora on my iPhone 5s through my Bose Soundlink Mini (with its minty cover). The last couple of weeks though, visit web
music has been my choice. Specifically, instrumental music (piano, violin, cello, etc). I have found a station on Pandora that I love (search Lucia Micarelli on Pandora). This music is soothing and relaxing, and even though I am doing my own nails, I feel as though I am being pampered!

What is your mani ritual? Do you Netflix or do you listen to music?

polishedbybeckie

And the mani that happened last night…

I used Renaissance Cosmetics [footprints in the snow]. A beautiful white polish with micro black glitters, micro rainbow glitters (though barely visible), and a gorgeous purple shimmer (also hard to see in the images). This went on in two easy coats and I topped with Seche Vite topcoat.

Renaissance Cosmetics footprints in the snow

(All images owned and copyrighted by Beckie Kengle. Please do NOT copy, save or print. For image use, please contact Beckie via email at polishedbybeckie[at]gmail[dot]com)

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Indie Polish Review | Featuring Hare Polish

Today I want to show you some new pretties that I ordered from Hare Polish on Etsy. This is their New Year’s collection, adiposity and they were inspired by Salvador Dali. First of all, medicine these polishes are absolutely gorgeous, check and like nothing I’ve seen before! They not only are pretty colors, but have the most amazing multi-chromatic flakies in them that are mesmerizing! I did buy all 3 from this collection, but so far have only swatched one of them.

HP new years trio

Nikole has wonderful customer service! My order shipped pretty quickly, and was packaged very well!. And there was a nice note on my packing slip which I cut out and placed under the glass on my mani desk with my other indie polish business cards (post on that to come soon).

This beauty is called [dream caused by the flight of a bee around a pomegranate a second before awakening on New Years]. It’s a gorgeous grayed-out purple/blue crelly filled with those spectacular multi-chromatic flakies!!

Photo Jan 27, 7 33 07 PM

Photo Jan 27, 7 33 43 PM

dream caused by the flight of a bee around a pomegranate a second before awakening on new years

This next one is called [when the melting clock strikes midnight]. It’s a somewhat sheer white/gray base (I swatched it over one coat of a pale gray polish for opacity) and is filled up with purple multi-chrome and gold flakies, some blue flecks, and some iridescent hex glitters, and a purple shimmer.

HARE polish when the melting clock strikes midnight

Hare Polish when the melting clock strikes midnight

HARE polish when the melting clock strikes midnight

(All images owned and copyrighted by Beckie Kengle. Please do NOT copy, save or print. For image use, please contact Beckie via email at polishedbybeckie[at]gmail[dot]com)

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Happy Valentine’s Day | featuring Duh Nail Polish

I wanted to share my Valentine’s Day mani with you all. I chose to do a simple dry-brush mani today. The colors I used are both by Duh Nail Polish. The pink base is called [i see you peepin] and the red is called [got my high heels on]. And I couldn’t help myself and topped it all off with [holo bliss topcoat] by Bliss Polish.

The formula on these are both very smooth, healing and went on nicely. I had no issues with streaking or dragging.

What did you do for Valentine’s Day? We don’t make a big deal out of the “holiday”, but we spent the day together as a family. We ran some errands, checked out the cute puppies at the local humane society adoption event in front of our local PetSmart (which was next to Old Navy where I had to go in and buy some new jeans), and now we are at home relaxing after I put my new “melmers” together (they are the Michael’s version of the IKEA helmers).

And now for the pictures…

Duh Nail Polish got my high heels on i see you peepin

Duh Nail Polish got my high heels on i see you peepin

(All images owned and copyrighted by Beckie Kengle. Please do NOT copy, save or print. For image use, please contact Beckie via email at polishedbybeckie[at]gmail[dot]com)

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Micah Kengle Great pictures and awesome colors!