Thanks so much to everyone for their beautiful, encouraging comments on my last post, chucking a wobbly. (I’m still snorty laughing over your comment, LB!!)
Without you all, I probably wouldn’t have continued bravely into the perfect storm of indoor photography – and, staring down the beast, wouldn’t have unlocked two more of its mysteries.
But more about those soon.
First, more cat distractions whilst trying to perfect product photography!
Slinky cut a fine figure but I was in kind of a rush to experiment with products for sale a little more!
While Tigger played the “charm card”. “What? Well, you are taking pictures of orange things!”
And Oscar just generally distracted me with mountains of fur! (Which, incidentally, is being professionally groomed tomorrow. Hysterical pictures to come!)
Two wonderful bloggers, Alys from Gardening Nirvana and Pauline from The Contented Crafter, as well as leaving their usual, encouraging, kind and thoughtful comments, quite rightly asked some important questions that could and should have been answered in my last post.
So, here I am to atone.
Also, BREAKING NEWS: The gorgeous Boomdeeadda has just custom ordered a crochet flower bunting from my Etsy shop, having seen them in my first post about my terrible photography tantrums!
Boomdee is currently decorating her world-famous craft room – the Boom Room – and would like some of my little ‘ol bunting in colours to match! She’s a gem!
But back to more indoor photography trials and tribulations!
As you know from last time, this is pretty much my indoor photography set up.
It consists of a solid white MDF base, one large, lightweight, white solid plastic sheet leaning against the back wall and two small solid ones on either side to hopefully bounce light back onto the subject. All of this was purchased quite cheaply at a large hardware store. I then drape a white sheet of paper (a paper tablecloth from a party shop) over the back board and base board to eliminate a harsh line between the two.
As I said previously, I had a basic, relatively cheap point-and-shoot camera already, which has quite a large lens. I was told a larger lens allows for more light, but who knows if that’s true.
I did splurge a little on a middle-of-the-range tripod, which of course is great for holding the camera steady when taking product shots.
I was also lucky enough to already have some work lights on stands in the shed because The hard-working Committee has accumulated those sorts of blokey things over the years for when we’ve repainted or had work to do in the roof space, etc.
The first lot were LED (tungsten) lights, which were excellent light-wise (see my pictures under Crochet Flower Bunting Garland Love on the right) but shocking heat-wise. I was sweating all over five minutes into a photo shoot and, ten minutes in, couldn’t physically stand near them any more.
So back out to the shed they went.
I fossicked around and found one set of fluorescent lights on a stand and they turned out to be much cooler. The light isn’t as good for indoor photography and I think that’s partly why I’ve had so many issues (and wobbly chuckings!) over the past week.
But, onto my discoveries!
I was aiming the fluoro lights straight at the subjects because the light wasn’t bright enough when bouncing it off the ceiling (like I had done to good effect with the tungsten lights.) So, off I went to the hardware store and bought one more fluorescent light.
And this is how things look now.
Aiming the two fluorescent lights straight at products was washing them out and creating shadows – so now with one more light – and aiming them at the ceiling – I’ve achieved a bit better result and a more natural look.
So, first discovery – bouncing light off the ceiling gave me a softer light (Aaahh! der! every professional photographer in the world just sighed!)
The second discovery was a bit “der-ish” as well. In fact, some may say I’ve been very daft!
You see, here I was all this time cursing iPhoto for its lack of photo editing tools when I realised there were two more tabs I had never clicked on!
It’s opened up a whole new world – I can lighten photos and make them a little sharper, etc. etc. Wow!
I know, Dani with the late news!
The great thing about these newly discovered photo editing tools is they help to make the product look more like it does with the natural eye, which is so very handy when you are selling your goods on line and people want to know exactly how the product looks before they buy.
So, here’s where I have progressed to …
For Alys: I have been scouring op shops (thrift shops) for props to help with photo styling (ha!) and came across these gorgeous little felt dresses for a bargain. Must try and make some myself one day!
There’s still a bit of work to do …
And now for a close-up.
And for another colour …
I’ve still got a lot to learn about the mysteries of indoor product photography, but little by little …
I hope that has helped answer a few questions from my first indoor product photography post, chucking a wobbly, but if it hasn’t feel free to ask any others you may have.
Now off to unlock the mysteries of photo editing – and to make some custom-ordered bunting …..