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How to Create Perfect Product Photos

Woman taking photograph.You already know that first impressions are everything, which is why your product photos and images can make or break your online store. If your website images look like they were taken in your basement, people are probably going to think twice before buying from you.

You don’t have to be a professional photographer to get great shots – you just need a digital camera and a little practice. Here are some tips to get you started:

Lighting

  • If you can, use natural light – either take your item outside or take your shots near a window.
  • Play with the white balance setting on your camera.
  • Make or buy your own softbox to help you with lighting and background.

    Softbox

    Softbox

  • Adjust your colors afterwards with an image editing program, like Photoshop or Picnik.

Background

  • Use a plain, simple background that will make your item stand out.
  • Cover busy surfaces with tissue or fabric – make sure to use an iron!
  • Watch for reflections and shadows

Setup

  • Tripods are your friend – no matter how steady you think you are, you can’t beat a stationary object.
  • Get in close to small items – or take really high-res shots and crop them later.
  • Keep your focus sharp. As nice as blurry can be in artsy shots, customers don’t want to buy something they can’t see.

Shooting

  • If your product is something that’s worn, show people wearing it.
  • Take your pics from all different angles – you never know which one will look the best on your screen and your customers will want to get a bit of perspective.
  • For guided steps, make sure to take a shot for every single one. You may not end up using them all, but you don’t want to go back and have to take more pics later.

Practice makes perfect and the great thing about digital photography is that you don’t have to pay for film. The best way to get better is to play around with different angles, surfaces, and methods. Give yourself time to play and learn.

Do you have any photography tips? Share them in the comments!

Comments

  1. Steve Says:

    The article above talks about a softbox with a link to a wikipedia article. That article only defines a softbox, but does not show a picture of one. It would be really nice to have a picture of a softbox in use. Maybe several pictures.

  2. admin Says:

    Thanks for the feedback Steve! I’ve added an image of a softbox. Also, here’s a link to a guide for making your own at home – http://www.instructables.com/id/DIY-Fabric-Softbox-14×56-Strip/.

  3. Donnie Says:

    Right now it seems like WordPress is the best blogging platform available right now.
    (from what I’ve read) Is that what you are using on your blog?

  4. Emily Hirai Says:

    Yes, we use WordPress for our blog. It’s one of the more popular blogging sites.

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