When selling online, an essential aspect of marketing your wares is to take really good photographs. Assuming that a professional photographer is out of the budget, here are some tips to help you take outstanding photos:
- Keep the background plain and simple. A simple one-colour wall to photograph against is essential. For larger items, an infinity curve is a professional trick that you could utilise. Use a crisp white sheet or paper roll and extend from a high position down to the floor and where you will stand the item.
- If your products are small, a table in a place offering good natural light is sufficient.
- Use natural light whenever possible. Try and avoid using a flash or taking photos in areas that are very bright or dark and shadowy. You are looking for even, natural light.
- Take photos from different angles and take close-ups of any interesting features. Although angles are important at least one photo must be a good clear head-on shot of the item.
- An in-use type photo is often advantageous for items that people may not be unfamiliar with.
- Assess the photos. Keep the original in an originals file. Create a copy to edit and crop to create the desired effect, to maximise the shot of the item. Doing so, safe in the knowledge that the original is always there to fall back to if required.
- Especially useful for a small item is to photograph them with a coin or other everyday object that shows the size.
- If natural light is not plentiful, consider creating a lightbox for smaller items. They can be made simply by lining a box with white paper, card or cloth and fixing a light from each side to minimise shadows.
- It is vital not to take photographs when you are short of time. Take your time to get it right.
- Take more photos than you think you’ll need. That way you can choose the best.
- If you are certain that your item(s) benefit from being photographed other than with a white or plain background. Use a mixture of photos with a white background and feature background.
The main things to remember are:
- The photos should enhance the item
- The photos should give an honest visual of the item
- Don’t consider using more than a single “arty” shot
- Use natural light if at all possible and try to avoid shadows and glare