Photos sell. You’ve heard this one before, right? A little while ago I wrote an article (part 1 with more tips) focusing on some of the more technical aspects of good product photography. However, there are many things you can do to catch a client’s eye, so today I thought I’d share a few tips regarding the creative aspects of product photography.
Choose Your Angels Carefully
Angels are meant to highlight the characteristics of your product and to help people gain a better understanding of what they’re about to buy. Unless you’ve built your own website, chances are that the website hosting your shop will limit the number of images you can upload, so might as well make the most of the 3 or 5 you can share.
The angels that most objects benefit from are the front angle (the camera sits at eye level) and the high angle (the camera sits right above the subject). They offer a full perspective of the product and let the client know what to expect.
Some of the other photos can focus on the details in the design, or if you’re selling clothes or jewelry, you can also take some shots of your product sitting on a mannequin. Mannequin shots are convincing because give people a sense of what the products would look like on a person.
Put Some Thought Into Your Background
What are you selling? If you’re selling something white or beige, a black background will help draw attention to it. If you’re selling something black, a white background will make it pop, and if you’re selling something orange, a blue background might be what you’re looking for. The idea is to work with complementary colors as much as possible.
Colored cardboard sheets and polymer sheets come in a large variety of colors, they’re cheap and can easily be fixed inside your light tent using paper clips, binder clips or adhesive tabs.
Don’t be afraid to show your personality and your creativity to clients. Some people will complain if your images have background elements that distract from the products you’re trying to sell, so you can’t fill the entire gallery with conceptual photos. But you can safely upload 1-2 conceptual photos if you’re feeling creative. After all, magazines and ads do this all the time.
If you’re selling a set of coffee cups, stacking them up will make them more appealing to people. If you’re selling a camera, surrounding it with printed photos or photographic postcards will highlight the very purpose of your product. If you’re selling nature themed jewelry, adding a few tree branches or flowers in the background will draw attention to the beauty and the craftsmanship of the products.
Phone lenses can be bought from camera stores or e-commerce giants such as Amazon. Full sets generally include fish eye lens, macro lens, wide angle lens and telephoto lens. While fish eye lenses should never be used on products (they distort them), wide angle lenses come in handy when photographing large objects. Macro lenses and telephoto lenses are useful for photographing small products.