Salve Container

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This topic contains 7 replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by  James Staddon 4 years, 11 months ago.

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  • #6231

    Patience
    Participant

    Could someone please critique my photo? Any advice would be appreciated. πŸ™‚

    #6245

    Patience
    Participant

    Could someone please critique my photo? Any advice would be appreciated. πŸ™‚

    • This reply was modified 4 years, 11 months ago by  James Staddon.
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    #6247

    Patience
    Participant

    Ok, a little background. My family and I run a small home business (www.beeherbalsalvy.com). I would like to know how to take pictures of our products in a more creative and winsome way. I’m asking you to critique this one right now because I’m getting ready to send out an email about our poison ivy salve. What do you guys think about the picture?

    #6248

    Patience
    Participant

    And I forgot to mention, the plant above the salve is poison ivy…that’s why I tried to get it in the picture too. πŸ™‚

    #6249

    Ezra Morley
    Moderator

    That was a good idea to incorporate the poison ivy into the picture!

    As far as the nitty gritty basics, it looks to me like there’s a bit of motion blur in the shot. A look at the Exif data shows that the shutter speed was 1/30, which is really too slow, unless your camera is mounted on a tripod. The shot does seem to be in focus, but the there’s just a general lack of clarity as a result of motion blur and noise from the tiny CCD sensor. My advice would be: Try to stabilize your camera somehow, a tripod would be great, but not necessarily essential. I have used lot’s of things for stabilizing my camera! A rock, a brick, your camera bag… anything that you can set your camera on so that you don’t jiggle it when you take the shot. I’m afraid you don’t have many options with regards to the noise, I doubt your camera lets you choose your ISO speed, but if you can, set it on ISO 100. Since you’re stabilizing it anyway, the shutter speed isn’t as important.

    All that said, if you’re just sending a resized version in an e-mail, 99% of people won’t even be able to tell the difference. Much more important is the “creative and winsome” composition.

    As far as composition is concerned, the first thing I would try would be to get down low. In this instance, your camera would need to be practically resting on the ground. Something else you could try would be to set your can on a table with a sprig of ivy beside it, and try a product shot. Just pay close attention to the background, it can make or break the image. If you’re looking for a “natural” product shot, you could try to find an old stump and set up on that.

    • This reply was modified 4 years, 11 months ago by  Ezra Morley.
    Attachments:
    #6252

    Patience
    Participant

    I see what you’re saying. Thanks for taking the time to critique. πŸ™‚

    #6264

    Ezra Morley
    Moderator

    You’re welcome! Hopefully James will be able to give you some pointers also!

    #6329

    James Staddon
    Keymaster

    buddingphotographer’s advice is excellent. I like the idea of elevating the product to allow the camera be at a more dynamic angle. Here are some of my thoughts:

    Compose the shot so that it is obvious that the salve container is the main subject. Zoom in. Make the poison ivy a background element, out of focus.

    Depth of field is vital for product images. If you can get your hands on a DSLR camera, start implementing the 4 different methods of increasing your DOF as explained in this blog post: How to Make the Background Blurry. You may be able to apply some of them with a point-and-shoot too.

    A tripod is essential for product photography too. Not only does it insure sharp images, it allows me to easily rearrange products without loosing my composition. When I arrange a product how I like, I usually need to make a few tweaks after I take the first shot. It could be dust on the product, a wrinkle in the cloth, adding a new background element . . . I’m always tweaking how I arrange stuff. With a tripod, I can take a second shot with the new arrangement and not waste time trying to get “the perfect” angle again.

    Browse around on http://www.spemporium.com (a website that sells teas) to get ideas for angles, backgrounds, and setups. I’m sure they have professional photographers with professional lighting, so you probably won’t be able to recreate the same look, but you want to be professional, right? So look at how the pros do it and try to create what they create.

    Also, this article on shooting Etsy products should be helpful for beginning: The Do’s and Dont’s of Product Photography for Etsy Sellers.

    • This reply was modified 4 years, 11 months ago by  James Staddon.
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