I love having guest bloggers come and share their knowledge and skill with you. Today I introduce my first guest blogger of 2013, Crystal Zacharias of Crystal Gayle Photography. Crystal is joining us today to talk about product photography, the importance of taking good photos and how to do it like a professional, even when you are not. It’s my joy to have her join us today!
Not everyone has an easy time with a camera and so photographing product can be a real headache! So, to help make things a little easier, here are a few things that are quite useful when shooting product.
- Of course, you’ll need a camera. You don’t need a fancy camera, just be sure you know how to operate yours. Read the manual, watch youTube tutorials, and play around with it! The more you use it, the more comfortable you will be come with it.
- A tripod. Mounting your camera on a tripod helps to keep your camera steady and reduce the risk of a blurry photo.
- Shutter release. If your camera is not compatible with a shutter release, use the timer setting on your camera. This will allow for zero shake on the camera while snapping a photo.
- A light box! This allows you to stream in your light through the fabric edges but not have glare on your product. You can build your own light box (which didn’t go well for me and I didn’t like the fact that it didn’t clean up nice and compact). You can also purchase many different types from most photography stores.
- Bright lights. Lights with a rating for daylight are going to give you the most natural lighting in doors, allowing you to shoot your product at any hour of the day (or night) and even on cloudy days. Play around with your lights against the light box. Different angles will give different effects on your product.
- Simple backgrounds. Keep your backgrounds in your light box simple and clean. Too busy of a background can distract a potential customer to see the full detail of your product. If you’re staging products rather than using simple backgrounds, use something that accents your product rather than takes away from it. Stage your products in a fashion that they may be used. For example, I’ve shot many glasses rimmed with sugar and salt to show how the product could be used.
- Photo editing program. I use Photoshop to touch up minor blemishes, cropping and to get the coloring just right on photos. There are many inexpensive photo programs, and even free ones like Picasa and Gimp.
- Time. Don’t rush yourself. Take the time to get things set up and do it right!
REMEMBER that your customers can not pick up your product to view them as in a brick and mortar store. Your photos need to be a selling point! Quality photos equal sales! Personally, when I’m shopping online, photos are a big thing to me. If they aren’t clean, crisp, well list or neat, I will usually browse on. It may sound a bit bias, but how do you REALLY know what the quality of the product is if the photo isn’t quality. If you don’t feel confident in producing quality photos, hire a professional photographer to do this for you.
[hr with=top /]
My most enjoyable hobby has become a business for me. I enjoy photographing almost everything including nature, still life, and children. My photography is based from Altona, Manitoba and surrounding areas. Some of it has been taken in different areas of Manitoba’s Whiteshell Provincial Park. Most of my inspiration comes from God’s beautiful planet He’s created. I love that He has given us such miraculous creations in nature that sometimes we fail to see. I also take inspiration from other photographers and their work.
— Kater’s Acres (@katersacres) January 23, 2013
Stay tuned next week for more important information on building your brand.