4 February 2013

EtsyMetal blog carnival- Photography tips

Welcome to our EtsyMetal monthly Blog Carnival!
Blog Carnival is about a group of our members sharing their experience on a common topic.

Photography Tips & Tricks

Since I started making  jewellery I have been trying to take good photos for my Etsy shop and Website and blog.  The photos are so important when you want people to purchase your work online, the images are all they have to go by when they can't see it in real life of touch it in person.

My photos keep changing, I go through phases where I really like them and then I get bored and want to change the style again.  I have used everything from coloured backgrounds to sandpaper and now I mainly photograph on wood with a lighter colour in the background.

My tips are to use a macro lens or the macro setting on your camera, this lets you get close up and give good depth of field to the picture to make it more interesting.

I use a 100mm Canon macro lens:

I always used to photograph during the day in natural light from my kitchen window on my dining table.  This was fine but I got annoyed with only being able to to take pictures at the weekend (I work full time and it is always dark when I get home!) I recently made my own little light box which works great, all of my pictures are taken using this, easiest thing ever:

....and then I received a proper light tent for my Birthday, I haven't used it yet and I don't think I have a need for it right now as my trusty plastic box does the trick!  I will probably use it for larger items if I need too.

This is the tent I have:

Daylight bulbs are essential otherwise your pictures will have a yellow tint from normal bulbs.  
When I have finished taking my pictures I always edit them either using iphoto which I find the quickest or I also have photoshop elements. There are plenty of free photo editing programs on the web you can also use, one I particularly like is Aviary which you use through Flickr. I always have to adjust the levels to brighten the picture and occasionally colour saturation; and sometimes I crop and use the retouch tool if I have a bit of dust or something in photo.

Here are a few of my pictures using my homemade light box and the above methods.

I hope these tips were useful!

See some more tips from other members of the EtsyMetal team.


Memories for Life said...

The wood is a very nice background for your metal items.
I do much the same with editing in terms of using the levels command in Photoshop. And I agree about using the light box/tent...not enough light hours in the day otherwise.
Your photos look great, thanks for the tips :)

LjB said...

I have always loved your photos:-))

Trina (Trina's Clay Creations) said...

Thank you for sharing, great tips! Your photographs are beautiful!

Natasha Hoover said...

Huh! I've made a light box before, but I went to great lengths measuring and cutting a real box to tape pieces of a cut up sheet inside. I never thought to use a plastic container like that, but it clearly yields great results.

PeculiarForest said...

Thank you guys!

Natasha- I was thinking of constructing some elaborate design too and then I saw these in the hardware store. The plastic is not complete see-through so I thought why not! I had bought a bigger one and then I realised I already had a couple of these smaller ones at home which are easier to use. Stick a background in and you are sorted. :)