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About Me

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Reisterstown, MD, United States
A practicing attorney who is trying to find the time to develop a small business designing, making and selling handmade jewelry.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Product Photographer

Everyone I speak to says that the most important thing in an online store are your product photos.  My wonderful husband does my pictures for me and I think he does a pretty good job.  However, we have an unpleasant dance we do each time I ask him to photograph my new pieces.  I tell him that I have some new items that need to be photographed.  He says "OK."  Then the next day, I tell him again that I need some photos taken.  He says "OK."  In a few days, I ask him when he is going to take my photos.  He says "I'll take them this afternoon."  Somewhere around dinner time, I'll ask if he is going to take the photos today.  He says "I can take them now or I can cook dinner, which do you prefer."  I say "we can take them after dinner."  He says "OK."  After dinner around 8:00 or so, I say "are you ready to take the photos?" He says "OK" and does take them, usually getting started around 10:30 or 11:00.  When I get up the next morning, I find my flash drive with my photos on it sitting next to my computer.

I admit that this system works but it seems a bit inefficient to me.  So, I've started thinking about hiring a professional photographer to take my product pictures.  The problem is, I don't know any professional photographers and even if I did, I doubt they would be product specialists.  There are 2 other problems as well.  First, I live in Reisterstown, MD, a lovely small town with a limited population.  It is close to Baltimore, MD but I doubt Baltimore is a hotbed of professional product photographers either.  The second problem is money.  I don't have an endless supply and my business isn't currently generating enough to cover this expense.  In reality, I don't even know how much of an expense it would be.

In order to find out and replace my guesses with actual numbers, I contacted a few product professionals by email asking them for information, including pricing.  It has been a week and a half and I haven't heard a peep out of any of them.  Maybe taking pictures of jewelry for a small producer isn't a money making deal for photographers but you'd think they could at least tell me that they don't do it or that they have some huge minimum.

The last round of photos we took (last Sunday night around midnight) need to be retaken because the colors didn't come out right.  We are in the middle of the dance.  I'll probably ask him soon, "when are you going to take the pictures" and he'll tell me that he'll take them this afternoon.  Then, tonight while you're getting ready for bed, you can think of Marty in our dining room photo studio, taking pictures of my newest jewelry pieces for me.

I am very grateful that he is willing to take these pictures for me but he'll tell you this himself...I am a terrible dancer.

1 comment:

  1. If I might make a suggestion, possibly have your husband show you how to use the camera if you don't already know how. Then, take a cardboard box, large enough for your biggest display piece with ample room around it. Cover the inside of the box with thick paper (such as oak tag). Keep all the sides white except for the side you will be shooting the product against. Which is generally the bottom inside of the box as you turn the box on it's side to encompass the product. The background can be any soft color you like (creams and ivories look fabulous). You can add decorative pieces around your product such as plants if you want to spruce up the photo. From there you can take a simple heat lamp (basically a bulb with a metal cone around it with an attached clamp) to light up the inside of the box. This illuminates your entire product and makes for much better images! You can use softer frosted bulbs if it is too bright. I've even cut out flaps on the sides of the box to stream light through for spotlight effects!

    I also use my Yudu light as the light box base!

    Sorry if I've stated anything you already know or thought of, just trying to be helpful.

    Wish you the best of luck!