Tips on taking better photos of your products

 
I have been feeling a bit lost, a bit detached from this little old blog recently.
There have been a few meltdowns, yes there have. I don’t know what to blame it on, maybe alot has been going on but I’ll get to that in another post.
 
Today I wanted to share with you some product photography tips.  
I was asked to teach a workshop the other day at the TWNH about blogging and product photography, if you are interested, let me know and I will post the blogging tips as well.

Light

Use natural light, an overcast day is perfect
Shoot in the morning or late afternoon, you want soft diffuse light, not direct sun which causes shadows and bright spots
If working inside, shoot near a window, you may need a tripod or use a light box

Focus
 
Make sure your product is in focus and avoid any motion blur
 
A tripod is a must in low light situations
 
 

 

Framing

Think about the composition of your product in the camera
Move around and try to see your product in different angles
Make sure your camera is at the right distance from your product to avoid odd perspective and distortion
Style

Show your style by using props and different backgrounds
Don’t overdo it though as the product is the focus and you don’t want to distract the viewer by using out of place props or bright patterned backgrounds
 

 

Natural Environment
Show how the product is used, people want to see how a bag looks on someone’s shoulder or how earrings look on someone’s ears


Product Details

Show your products fine details by taking some close ups
Make sure you also have photos of the whole product for your viewer 

 

Variety

Don’t be afraid to change things around when photographing, change backgrounds and props regularly
Vertical & Horizontal
Take both vertical and horizontal photos of your products as you may later need to use your images for labels, business cards etc
Camera Settings
Make sure you get your camera settings correct so your photos aren’t overexposed or underexposed
Turn off your flash and set your white balance, i.e. low light, shade, cloud setting
Set your ISO* as low as possible and use your tripod
A lower ISO equals sharper photos 
Use the self timer to prevent any camera shake from pressing the shutter
Check your camera’s LCD screen after each photo and adjust things as they are needed
*ISO (equivalent) speed on a digital camera gives an indication of the sensitivity of the image sensor
 
Post Editing
Always edit your photos even if it’s just to adjust your levels
Use editing software or free online editing sites such as picnik.com
  • Crop
  • Adjust levels
  • Adjust saturation
  • Colour correction
  • Sharpening
  • Remove any dust or marks
  • Any other post editing

 

Styling Your Photos
  • Get inspiration from magazines, websites, blogs but do not copy other peoples images
  • Put your unique style into the shoot by thinking about your product
  • What is it? It’s qualities, its use, the process in which it was made, inspiration behind making it
  • Your product needs to be enhanced not lost in a mismatch of backgrounds and props
  • Try to tell the viewer a story of your product within the photograph

 

I really hope you found this useful, I’d love for you to let me know.

Happy sunshiney day friends ♥
✗ 

Cathie
  • Cathie great, great post and very timely for me 🙂
    Thanks so much for this, it's invaluable!
    x

  • Thanks gorgeous for the great tips! V helpful as I really need to learn this stuff.
    I hope you are OK special, Im so sorry to hear about the meltdowns.
    Sending you big love and hugs and everything I can muster xo
    PS I"m always here if you need me xo

  • You are lovely. I don't like many of my photos, I know how I want them to look, but they don't look that way. The same as my blog. Big ideas, very poor execution! I will be back a few times to re read your tips, I suspect Cathie!

  • Very useful – thank you! Since we got our first digital SLR our photos are much better but lazy old me tends to use the auto function a lot simply because I don't know more about it. Another thing to learn more about 🙂

  • Really useful – thank you so much!!!

  • great advice! thanks!!

  • cath @ chunkychooky

    august meltdowns. I know them well. Sending hugs. xxx

  • Some great tips. I must admit I'm a bit of a point, shoot and upload kind of person…really should get to know my hardware/software a bit better….

  • One day I'm going to read the instructions book. (AAARGH! Even as I type, I know I won't!).

    Great tips, C. And may the week pass without further meltdown, or hiccups of other not-very-nice stuff. x

  • Thanks for the great tips – i will certainly be using them. Some blogging tips wouldnt go astray either! ; ) Hope the week improves x

  • Just the motivation I needed! You are wonderful.

    Forever Crafting,
    Lori

  • Great tips Cathie, I need all the help I can get when it comes to photography 🙂

  • Excellent tips – thanks so much!

  • Thank you so much, I really appreciate the tips I have so much to learn! Your post has been really helpful and I'd love to hear your blogging tips too!

  • Thanks for the wonderful tips Cathie. I'm such a lazy photo taker!

  • great tips, Cathie, thank you!

  • Lots to think about, I usually HATE trying to take product photos but I think this will really help, thanks. 🙂

  • Very handy tips, and lovely pictures too! Thanks for sharing this, and fingers crossed for a very happy meltdown free week ahead..xx

  • These are great tips! I picked up another at blogopolis on sat which I've already used – hold your breath for 2 seconds and push your elbows into your sides to get a really steady shot (esp useful in low light when not using a flash).
    I'm going to bookmark this page – those are some great inspirational shots too 🙂
    xxxCate

  • Great tips Cathie! Thanks for sharing. I am so overly reliant on my iphone for photos it is embarrassing! Btw – I CANNOT go past that totally adorable bunting dress in your last photo!!!! Source????

  • Thanks for the tips – I need all the help I can get with my photography…and I am really trying to improve. Always love good tips…Amanda xox

  • Oh, how I love that you have shared your wisdom. Thank you for your advice, and some more beautiful photographs to illustrate. I often wonder what is the attraction to some blogs more than others, and the photographs are a make or break for me.

    Shame really, because my photographs suck! But perhaps they don't need to anymore!

    I hope that you find your blojo soon, and I hope that all is well in your world. xx

  • Printing my manual – I have had a bit of a read of the bit about ISO, I think I need to have a bit of a play with that. Do you have any advice regarding getting your subject to stay still?

  • Great article Cathie, I am always looking for help with my product photography!

  • i love your tips! you are a great teacher and blogger. i'd love to hear anything you have to say about blogging. i hope you are having a lovely day today! xox

  • Thanks for the lovely tips – very helpful! Have a great week! Juanita

  • How wonderful are you! Extremely helpful tips. Still getting to know my new camera, I had become so used to my old one that I could usually get the settings just right without thinking too much about it. Now I am re-learning for the new one. Your advice is really great!

  • Oh..yes this is useful! I love your images but that goes without saying…. xx

  • Thanks for sharing your tips Cathie.I have been going through a fair amount of reading and experimenting with my little camera and your tips really sum a lot!A must read in a regular basis and practise makes "better" hopefully 🙂
    I hope you are ok and smiling as I write this note?!!
    Sandrine xx

  • Hi Cathie,
    Great post. Thanks for sharing your tips. Your photos are always so appealing and beautiful!
    Carmel
    x

  • Tas

    All helpful advice. Thank you so much.

  • Thanks for the tips….we are currently in the midst of re taking our pics. Thanks again.

  • What fabulous tips Cathie! I am SO into taking photos at the moment. I am about to publish a post showing just how much :o) Thanks for sharing, I will definitely be using some of these going forward.
    Sorry to hear about the meltdowns, but that's so totally normal, I wouldn't worry too much. And blogging is hard work, so maybe you just needed a little break from it. We'll always be here to read when you decide you want to post again xo

  • you take gorgeous photos. thanks for the tips lovely. x.

  • Awesome photos & great tips, thanks Cathie 🙂

  • Thanks for the tips…I only have a little camera but will try some of your tips to improve my photo taking.

  • I SO NEED to get off auto! Thanks for these tips – your photos are always wonderful!

  • Thanks, you're the best, giving us all these tips but I still don't think I will ever be able to make such 'talking' images as you do. I wish…. I do agree about that copying, I wouldn't do it, I don't think it would work either. So I'll keep searching for those 'speaking' images. Hope I'll find the way sometime….
    Bye,
    Marian

  • Thank you for the tips. I'm truly terrible at taking photos so any help is much appreciated.