How to take great photos of your work

One question we frequently hear from makers is, "How can I take quality product photographs without a professional camera?" The good news is, you don't need to spend a lot of money to take great photos! Understanding the principles of photography is what's most important. Here are a few simple, yet effective, things to keep in mind:

Lighting: Avoid utilizing the flash on your phone, which can cause bad reflections on your image. Instead, use natural light and indirect shade from a window or door. If the room is too bright, try hanging a white sheet behind the object to diffuse the light.

If you need to use artificial light, small lamps will do the trick. Be sure to check the bulbs to see if they are labeled “daylight” or “tungsten.” Because cameras struggle with different color light sources, choose only one bulb type to work with. For optimal results, aim the light towards the wall rather than shining it directly onto the piece.

Background: Clean, simple backgrounds are the best way to highlight a piece, as they won’t distract viewers with extra clutter. When shooting a small piece, a large sheet of white paper will work perfectly. For a larger item, photograph it against a plain wall or backdrop.


Angle: Take multiple photos of your piece from different angles. Show the project in its entirety by taking a few wider shots that depict it from the front, sides, and top. Highlight more specific details of the piece by taking a few closer shots as well. Yield a more professional photo by removing dust, fingerprints, and excess paint or materials.

Creativity: Photography is a creative process in which you may have to improvise in order to achieve the optimal shot. For example, if you are photographing jewelry and need a way to prop up a ring, small household objects such as a pencil may do the trick. Don't be afraid to try a few different shots with a variety of props to capture the photo that showcases your product best.


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