Sunday, March 09, 2008

Proper Lighting is Crucial

Today's object lesson:
Having excellent photos allows an artist to demand much higher prices for the work.

Just like a house can fetch a higher asking price with good landscaping and proper interior staging, so too can arts and crafts.

This morning I found a spot of sun in my office and decided to take advantage of the opportunity to re-shoot a box I have for sale in my etsy store. It's a fabulous box, but the images haven't done it justice.

Through trial and error, I've found that indirect natural light in the morning or afternoon produce the best effect for showing off the texture of the paper I make - not to mention the colors.


The before shots are all taken in the same room but with overhead lighting mid-day. You can see the tremendous difference a change in lighting makes.

Besides that, you have to take care to have a background that is complimentary. The before shots have the box placed on my desk. While the wood grain is fine, it is boring and lifeless. Plus, the office door can be seen in the background of one. The after shots have the box and lid resting on top of a house plant with more black. The contrast between the item and the background helps the item stand out. The greenery adds some needed life. It doesn't hurt that it echoes the leaf on the box's lid.

This took me less than 15 minutes to do, including cropping and sizing it for internet uploading. I couldn't really expect anyone to pay the asking price for it with the old photos, but now I can.

14 comments:

Rocki's Rock 'n Beads said...

Wonderful tips! (Love your blog too)

Waterrose said...

I love the after shots...so much more interesting. I take pictures and find that I'm hardly ever satisfied. I keep experimenting....hopefully one day I will have the "recipe!"

Kinichi River Designs said...

Excellent job with the before and after shots. I love the use of the house plant - so creative! I was planning to do your feature on my blog tomorrow, so I'm glad I saw this to include a link. :)

Urban Design said...

Great new pictures. This is something I'm always struggling with. I've got some I need to retake in my store now.

Artisticle said...

now that the sun is up when I get home I'll be taking my works outside for better pictures!

miznyc said...

it really is amazing what a difference lighting makes.

Just imagine if we had a professional photographer doing our shots!

smashgirl said...

It looks like a different box with the lighting! I can't agree more about having a nice spot with natural light to achieve the best possible photos of your work. Thanks for sharing!

Jenrosesegrest said...

very informative post thanks!
xoxo, jen

rekindled said...

Great tips, thank you. I am struggling with getting good lighting in photos so your tips will come in very handy!

With You In Mind said...

I have also struggled a bit with pictures. Thank you for the tips.

Little Lovables said...

That is a great difference. Excellent tips!

Nnairda's said...

Thanks for sharing. I have some pics I need to retake too!

Blue & White Wear said...

Great pics! Thanks for posting your ideas. This is an area I have tried to improve. Even tho they look better, they are not great; I am still not satisfied, and will keep working till I get it right.

Susan Kuchinskas said...

Definitely, the afters are much more sophisticated and alluring. And the boxes themselves are great (ditto those plantable notecards!). I note that the afters literally look like different boxes, in that they seem to be different colors. I know sunlight supposedly is true light, but sometimes it makes things look yellower, doesn't it?