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Monday, 16 June 2008

How to take great photos

Something that makes a great etsy shop is great item photos. So many people struggle with taking photos (I was one of them!) but now I have gotten pretty good, so I figured I would write a 'how-to' on taking photos. I have used a necklace which was made for me by my lovely friend little Vicky.
What you will need;
Some items!
At least 2 sheets of white card (or 1 really big sheet)
A camera.

My camera is digital, and has a Macro setting (it looks like a little flower). For this tutorial, I am not using any photo-editing software, no photoshop, no gimp, just a camera and some card. Please click on any image to view it full size

So, Step 1, Camera and scene set up
Go outside, make sure you are not facing the sun (it should be to the side or behind you), lay 1 piece of card on the ground, and stand the other piece behind it. Get your camera, and point it toward the card, so the card fills the screen. Select your menu option, find the 'EV compensation' or 'white balance' and adjust it until the white card looks white on your camera. Don't over do it :) Then select the 'Macro' option, this will usually display a blue flower on your screen.
EV compensationMake sure you have selected the macro option. Now place your item on the card, and line it up so it's in the middle of your screen. Press your shutter half way down so your camera can focus, then all the way down to take the picture. How does it look? If it is coming out blurry, you might be too close or too far away.

Step 2
Now you have your scene and camera set up, you can start taking close ups and quirky angle shots. There are a few things to think about when doing this;
Try not to get huge shadows in your photos.necklace by little vicky, with a big shadow
As you can see, shadows can totally spoil your photos! It takes the eye away from your item, which is not what you want. To avoid it, move to the side of your item, or take your photos when the weather is slightly over-cast.

Here are some of the photos I took today;

And this close up, with and without macro setting;If you can take photos like this, it is sure to help you with your etsy shop.

If you have any photography tips, please feel free to share them by leaving a comment!

Now you can photoshop your photos to get them looking even better!

4 comment(s):

cloudhopping said...

Good tutorial, thanks for sharing! Your photos always look clear and sharp.

Anonymous said...


Free photography tips should be given out to all new Etsy users!

Friendlyhands said...

Fantastic! If it ever stops snowing I can go outside and give it a try....we have over 2 feet and it won't stop!!!!
Thanks for sharing, I really can't wait to try:)

KMCdesigns said...

I wish I had some snow here Friendlyhands, it's just really cold with none of the good stuff!
The snow could be a good backdrop for your items, but you might need to turn down the exposure!
Have fun :)