As a small business owner, your income depends on selling your products. In the art and crafts industries, your handmade goods are usually your main source of income. During the outbreak of COVID-19, stores had been closed due to gathering restrictions and left many towns practically deserted. As a crafter, you must then think of some other ways of selling your creations. Being that you’re home, you take refuge, of course, on the internet! Here you can just post your products in your Etsy shop, your website or your business social media accounts. All these places will be working towards the same goal which is selling your products. However, there is one aspect of effective marketing that crafters and small business owners tend to neglect…the quality of your item’s photos!
This might be a minute detail to observe but it tends to be the biggest deciding factor when customers look at your products. If you have noticed, people who invest in their marketing layout, attract more buyers than those of who
use personal shots that didn’t come out “so good”.
Here are some product photography tips you can ponder on.
Bonus! These are DIY so you can do this in the comfort of your home with not much money out of pocket!
Buy the best camera within your budget
It’s now time to prioritize and think about investing in the best camera (of course, that is within your budget). Even if you are not into photography or don’t care to learn photography, it’s important to elevate your craft.
While there are some smartphones available that have a very powerful cameras, a lot of crafters are still depending on their older generation phones
or worse, digital cameras that are outdated and which make it impossible to
achieve good results.
If you have a newer smartphone you are in luck. You can just use your phone!
Take some time to explore your camera
After spending a hefty amount of time deciding what camera to buy, at last, it’s now in your hands! It is time to explore the ins and outs of your device. It is important to know how to maneuver your new camera! Don’t be intimidated by its buttons; after all, no one has ever learned without trying! You can also find introductory photography classes where you will the basics of operating your new camera. You invested in this great device so makes sense to learn how to use it in manual mode, not automatic.
Transform your raw photos
Just having the best camera isn’t going to do it all. Although you captured vivid and beautiful photos you can still make them better in post-production. Post-processing is a great way to increase image quality. If you are going to do the photoshoot using your phone, it’s best to use an editing app. You can discover editing apps on your phone that can help with simple things like white balance, color correction, brightness, tone, or color balance. There is also some readily available software in the market like Adobe Photoshop.
Photo editing apps
We have tried many photo apps (trust me we have tried them all, lol) and our favorite go to apps right now are:
- Pixelcut- to remove backgrounds
- Pic collage- for creating collages
- iMovie- for editing little videos (Etsy and social media loves videos but that’s a blog post for another day)
We took an iPhone photo academy photography course that was an excellent course if you are looking to invest more in your photography skills but it’s definitely an investment in your business.
BASIC PHOTOGRAPHY RULES
Regardless of what you’re using to shoot, you can still elevate your product photography by learning some photography rules.
Rule of Thirds
All photographers are familiar with the “Rule of Thirds.” This is a rule of thumb that can make your product images more visually interesting and playful by splitting the frame into three parts. Then, instead of centering your product right in the middle of your photo, set it slightly to the side and voila! You’re already working like a pro!
It’s all about good lighting
We have photographed thousands of products in the last 5 years and lighting to me is the most important. You don’t need a high-quality set-up to get the perfect light source. Luckily, the best light in the world is natural light, and it’s free!
The flash on your camera may help when capturing night shots but on your crafts? Naaah! One of the biggest mistakes that crafters make is relying
on the flash on their camera, or on their overhead light. They produce low
quality light effects that will make your products look cheap. Unfortunately, unnatural, harsh light just doesn’t make your products look good, and can subconsciously turn off potential buyers.
Playing with different angles makes your product look natural and captivating. People aren’t the only ones that have a good side when being photographed.
Even your crafts need a little tweaks to their sides when being photographed.
Props do not need to be expensive though. A white cloth laid out flat can be a good base for editing your backgrounds, and it can also serve as the background itself. Doing a photoshoot for wreaths?
Every house has a door right? Why not use your own! If you are truly serious about selling your products as a professional, it wouldn’t be a bad idea to put a fresh coat of paint on the door you are going to use. Let’s face it $25 and an afternoon of painting could make your photos look so much more professional. Imagine seeing this beautiful wreath on a door that is faded and paint peeling. Now with that being said, there are some gorgeous antique worn doors but there’s a big difference between those and what I’m talking about.
Having that faded door is not going to enhance your design. Using a neutral paint that will compliment your designs in all the seasons is preferable. Imagine painting your door pink and hanging a red and green Christmas design on it. Having some with a white door and some with a pink door and some on a wreath Easel doesn’t appear as professional as using the same background every-time. Consistency is very important when it comes to a cohesive look to your store. It’s a great rule of thumb to always use the same background.
A good photograph depicts not only the image of your products but the emotions it evokes from your buyers. Photography does not require a person to study and finish some course before you can try doing photoshoots. Once you are eager to learn the basics, you know you’ll succeed. Have fun!