How Are Photos Added to Gravestones?

How Are Photos Added to Gravestones?

February 8, 2024

Red,Roses,On,Black,Granite,Tombstone,Outdoors,,Space,For,Text.When visiting a cemetery, you may come across gravestones that have photos of the deceased embedded on them. These images serve as a way to honor and remember the person buried there, providing a visual representation of their life. Adding photos to gravestones is a meticulous process that requires careful planning and craftsmanship. In this blog, we will explore the various methods used to incorporate photos into gravestones.

1. Ceramic Photos:

One popular method of adding photos to gravestones is through ceramic photos. Ceramic photos are made by printing the desired image onto a sheet of porcelain or ceramic material. The image is then heat-treated, resulting in a permanent and durable image. Once the ceramic photo is ready, it is carefully affixed to the gravestone using a strong adhesive. Ceramic photos can withstand elements such as rain, sunlight, and temperature changes, ensuring that the image remains intact for years to come.

2. Laser Etching:

Another technique commonly used for adding photos to gravestones is laser etching. This process involves using a laser to engrave the image onto the surface of the gravestone. The laser removes a thin layer of material, creating variations in color and texture that form the image. Laser etching can achieve highly detailed and lifelike images, capturing subtle features and expressions. This method is particularly effective for portraying intricate details such as facial features or landscapes. The engraved photo becomes a permanent part of the gravestone, resistant to fading or deterioration over time.

3. Sandblasting:

Sandblasting is a traditional method used to add photos to gravestones. This process involves projecting a high-pressure stream of abrasive material, such as sand or crushed glass, onto the surface of the gravestone. The abrasive material erodes the stone in specific areas, creating a relief or raised image. To create a photo, a stencil of the desired image is applied to the gravestone. The areas not covered by the stencil are exposed to the abrasive material, resulting in the image being raised from the surface of the stone. Sandblasted photos offer a timeless and textured appearance that can withstand the test of time.

4. Engraved Plaques:

Engraved plaques are another method used to incorporate photos into gravestones. These plaques are made from durable materials such as brass, aluminum, or stainless steel. The desired image is imprinted onto the plaque using advanced engraving techniques, such as laser or rotary engraving. The plaque is then securely fastened to the gravestone, either with adhesive or mechanical fasteners. Engraved plaques allow for a more customizable approach, as they can be produced in various shapes, sizes, and finishes. Their durability ensures that the photo remains intact even in harsh weather conditions.

5. Custom Sculptures:

For a truly unique and personalized touch, some families opt for custom sculptures to represent their loved ones on gravestones. These sculptures can be created using various materials such as bronze, stone, or resin. Talented artists sculpt the likeness of the deceased based on photographs or descriptions provided by the family. The sculptures are then securely attached to the gravestone, either as a standalone piece or integrated into the design. Custom sculptures offer a lifelike representation of the person, providing a lasting tribute that stands out in the cemetery.


Adding photos to gravestones requires careful consideration and skilled craftsmanship. Whether through ceramic photos, laser etching, sandblasting, engraved plaques, or custom sculptures, each method provides a unique and meaningful way to commemorate the deceased. These photos serve as a visual reminder of the person’s life, allowing future generations to connect and remember. When choosing a method for adding photos to gravestones, it is important to consider factors such as durability, customization options, and budget. Ultimately, the chosen method should reflect the individual being honored and convey their legacy in a meaningful way.

Need Monument Makers in Phillipsburg, NJ?

Welcome to Phillipsburg Memorial Company! Phillipsburg Memorial Company has been the premier memorial company for Phillipsburg, NJ and the surrounding area since 1939. We are family owned and operated, and have been providing customers with exceptional service that continues to resonate. Phillipsburg Memorial Company offers a variety of services that include granite memorials, bronze plaques, and cemetery lettering and cleaning. Our reputation for professional service, dependability, and craftsmanship are hallmarks of our service we provide to each of our customers. Phillipsburg Memorial Company is a proud member of The National Federation of Independent Business. Call, email, or come by our office for your free consultation!

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