Product Photography For Crafters
Take Amazing Photos With Your Phone
Do you have something that you create or sell? Chances are you want to show the world the wonderful product you have created.
Before you show the world what you have made, you want to have nice photos to show everyone and get people interested in buying from you!
Many people use their fancy cameras to take pictures, but what if you don’t have one? Or you are in a hurry? I’ve totally been there. I have a nice camera, and I know how to use it, but sometimes it is easier to just snap a photo on your phone to use for your blog or for product photos.
As a photographer for many years, I want to share with you some tips that can help you take better craft photos to use to sell your products or to use on your blog!
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Use a flat, neutral surface.
There are many different backgrounds you see all over the internet. You see white backgrounds, wood, or even solid colors. Those are all good, but for simplicity sake, let’s just use a plain background that is flat, or that your product can lay on.
Most of the time I use a plain whiteboard to lay objects on. The white background is clean and won’t distract people from the product you are trying to sell.
Your background doesn’t have to be starch white if that is not what you are looking for. But you don’t want to use a super busy background either. Busy backgrounds can distract someone from seeing what you are trying to show them. For example, don’t take pictures on a rug with a really distracting swirl design. If you want some color, maybe try a gray or light pink.
Find good natural light
Are your pictures always too dark or too light? I love using natural light for my pictures. Whether it’s portraits or product photos, natural light is easy to work with. It is also easy to find. If you are inside, find a window. Even if it is cloudy out that day, windows still let in natural light.
In addition to using a flat surface and good lighting, you will want to use a reflector to bounce the light from the window onto your object. This will light up any shadows, creating better pictures, right from your phone!
Hover directly over the object
If you are short like me, this could be somewhat of an issue for you! Even getting directly over an object, if it is on the floor can be a challenge. I keep a step ladder handy for this reason.
In my house, the best place for lighting is by my bay window. The window has a ledge so I sit my whiteboard on the ledge, and then use my step ladder to get higher above the object that I am taking a picture of.
Once you are above the craft that you are taking a picture of, keep your phone horizontal to the background and tap the screen like the step below.
Tap the screen on your phone
Having your objects in focus is very important. You don’t want to use blurry pictures especially if you want to show the details of your object. On your phone, once you open the camera app, you will notice the little square that pops up while you are trying to take a picture. This is the focus area.
Once you have your craft or project set up the way you would like it, and you are hovering above the product, you can tap the screen to get the product in focus. This will auto adjust the brightness as well.
If you want a close up picture of your object, you can focus the camera by tapping on the screen once you are close to the object. Crafts such as crochet items are things that you will want to show some of the details. You want that buyer or reader to see the details of the stitches you worked so hard on.
To get the details of your object, get close to the object and then tap the screen to refocus. It will take some practice to perfect this skill, but eventually, you can get some pretty good detail shots using your phone!
There are generally 3 different spots you can put your object in. You want to use the rule of 3rds. This may sound complex, but it really isn’t too hard!
Craft placed directly in the middle with a lot of background showing.
Placed all the way to the left with a lot of background to the right.
Place the hat all the way to the right with a lot of background to the left.
Once you get comfortable with these placements you can get creative and start doing shots where the products or objects are at the bottom or top, such as many of the stock photos you see. But this is a lesson for another time! Let’s stick with the basics!
Take Multiple Photos
So now you know a little about the rule of 3rds when it comes to where to place your product or craft. If you don’t know exactly how you will use the photo, take it multiple ways.
Taking multiple photos of the same thing will help you to be able to use the same object for different purposes. I know when I am getting pictures around to put up for a blog post, I need many of the same pictures because every website takes different sizes.
Pinterest wants long pictures for their pins. A header image that you may display on Facebook will need to be horizontal.
Use free apps adjust and crop the photo
I’m a big fan of using Adobe Photoshop and Lightroom to edit my pictures on my computer. If you take pictures in good lighting, you shouldn’t need to do a whole lot of editing. There are some great free apps you can download that will do your simple edits to your pictures. I like to use Canva, PicMonkey, and Lightroom CC on my phone for editing apps.
Don’t forget to have fun with your photos! Just like the product you just made photography is an art.
I’m Lindsay, a wife, new mommy, and creative. I help moms with tips on exclusive pumping and new mom life. I create crochet patterns for beginners. I also help mom bloggers with photography.