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Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Tips for Photographing Close Ups & An Exclusive Sale!


Ring Pretty Pink Owl 
Disclosure:  I am by no means a photographer, but I do take a lot of pics, and here are some tips I have found that work for me when taking close up shots for my Etsy shop and blog.


I have been working on taking new pics for my shop TLC Creations. I don't know about you, but sometimes I find myself so excited to have an item completed, that I quickly take pics and post it, without giving much thought to the presentation.  I have been wanting to take new pics for my shop for a long time, and I am finally getting around to adding those pics. I am focusing right now on good close up pics.  After the 4th of July, I will be having a photo shoot with models, and a professional photographer to capture some great pics of lovely ladies actually wearing my creations!  I think it is important to not only show a great close up, but to also share the item being worn and enjoyed.  I think it helps the online shopper envision themselves wearing the item, which will hopefully in turn produce more sales. 

So this summer I will tackle the model photo shoot, but for now I am working on staging close ups of my jewelry.  I think adding a few simple props can create interest in your picture, hopefully grabbing shoppers attention.  Now I am by no means a great photographer, and although my husband owns a professional camera, he doesn't own a macro lens for it yet, so I typically take my pics with our older affordable camera. 

Mindie's Close Up Photo Tips:

1) You don't need a super expensive camera just one that will let you get clear close up shots.  Here is what I use, a Fujifilm FinePix S700 Digital Camera which has a 10x optical zoom, letting me get clear close up shots. You can find used ones on Amazon for only $72 and new ones for $300.  I found this camera to be very easy to use, to be honest I have not read the manual on it, but probably should.  


Fujifilm Finepix S700 7.1MP Digital Camera with 10x Optical Zoom 
1) I take my pics in natural light.  I have a little table that I set by an open window.  I then set my camera to "natural light" mode.

2) For close up shots I set the camera to "super macro" mode. If you don't do this, your close up shots will be fuzzy and unclear.  I don't zoom in with the lens, I simply stand close to the subject matter.

3) I then like to crop my pics using Picnik or a similar editing site.  I don't decrease the size of my pic, I only crop it.  

4) I often like to add "matte" to my pics on Picnik.  The matte is what makes the pics look lighter around the edges, I think it helps set a mood, and lets your subject matter stand out.

5) Adding props to your pic helps set a mood, and can add eye catching color.  Feathers, a scarf, doilies, are items that can add color, interest, and texture to a pic.

6) Setting your items on fabric, unfinished non shiny wood, or  a matte pastel paper will help cut down on glare, and provide interest.  I often shoot pics of my jewelry sitting on an old music sheet or novel. 

7) You don't always need to center your subject matter.  I find when the subject matter is off to one corner, it can create a more interesting pic.

8) If you are taking pics for your Etsy shop, after you upload them, be sure to check out how they appear to shoppers in the gallery.  Sometimes I will find myself cropping a photo a second time, because that gallery window is so small.  You want folks to see enough of the item that they can identify it, and hopefully find interesting enough to click and see more.

That's it, pretty easy to do, no huge manuals to read.  Here are a few examples of recent shop pics I have taken using these easy tips:

Ring No Coffee No Workee 

Earrings Bunny Hop 

Ring Green Rose 

Ring Filigree Red and Delicious Apple 

Bird Ring 

Earrings Scissor Birds 

Necklace Photo Charm 
If you are looking for more help with taking Etsy shop pics, Rae Gun Ramblings has a great post on

SALE!
Now about that sale, for Bacon Time readers only, head to my shop and use coupon code "BACONTIME" to get 25% OFF!  My prices are already really low, so that's a huge deal!


Well I hope you find these tips helpful. I feel like I need a few more interesting props to use.
 I would love ideas, what sort of items do you like to use for staging your shop or blog close up pics?

Linking up here and at the fabulous parties on my LINKY LOVE page.

18 comments:

  1. Lovely photos! Thank you for the great tips.

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  2. Seriously, your pics are AWESOME. I love it! I really love the props..and you're right, about getting something new and wanting to pic and post...I need to slow down and get some awesome props.

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  3. Beautiful photos! Featured this on my site today!
    www.craftingrebellion.com

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  4. These are great tips. I especially love your idea of using sheet music or a novel for the base. Thanks for sharing.

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  5. Very good tips! Beautiful pictures!

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  6. Hopefully my camera will do all this! I need to take better pics. My brother is in town for a few weeks and we are supposed to work on it together. So this is awesome and my fingers are crossed i can learn how to take great pics like yours! Hugs!!

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  7. Really helpful advice. Thanks!

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  8. I found you on It's a Keeper Linky Party!
    I've enjoyed reading your tips. I definitely have room for improvement with my photo taking skills!
    What do you plan on using once Picnik shuts down? I'm sure going to miss Picnik, but I can't seem to find anything else I like just yet.

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    1. As far as I know Picnik is just moving, I think we will still have Picnik some way or another. I have not tried a lot of other sites, but I am sure I will figure it out if I have too.

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    2. Tina, have you checked out www.picmonkey.com?

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  9. I love the idea of staging your product. THose are some fantastic tips.

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  10. Love the idea of using sheet music! I don't take very many photos of things that are small enough to fit on a piece of sheet music, but I hope I remember this tip when I do.

    I just wanted to share this too...There is a new online photo editing program very similar to Picnik called PicMonkey.com- I've tried it and it works much like Picnik for editing. I guess they're adding the "Collage" feature in the near future.

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  11. Thanks for the tips. Your photos are great and I sooo need one of those little tea cup and spoon pendants.
    Tamika @ www.notimefortea.com

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  12. Great tips! Thanks for sharing at Shine on Fridays!

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  13. Great tips, Mindie!! Thanks for linking this up to my party! PS - I just bought your owl ring :)

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  14. Your pics are lovely, Mindie. I love closeups like this. Thanks so much for linking up to my Blog Tips Cafe party over at I Gotta Create! These are great tips. I'll be featuring you today on Facebook! http://www.facebook.com/pages/Igottacreate/100573240032625?sk=wall

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