Saturday, June 9, 2012

Happy Saturday- How to take good photographs

Good photos are a must for the success of any e-commerce site. In real life, a buyer uses many senses to  decide whether to buy an item. They can see, touch, feel, and maybe even smell the item before they buy it. However on the internet the only sense used is the sense of sight. So as a seller we have to make up for the lack of the ability to touch and feel by providing beautiful visual photographs of the item. 

Today will be the first of a series of articles about how we can do this. These articles are written by Nadine, my co-contributor in this series. I hope you will take the time to comment and give us feedback, we would love to hear from you!

Taking a Great Photo: Equipment

You have decided to sell your fabulous items on the Internet! This new and exciting venue is fast becoming a national pastime with new “Marketplaces” and “Stores” opening every minute. So how  do you make sure your inventory is presented in an appealing, informative and eye-catching way? Can you do this in a cost-effective manner or do you have to invest loads of money into top of the line cameras, studios, editing software and expensive
props?   So many questions!  I’m happy to tell you that you can easily take clear and beautiful pictures of your valuable items without taking out a second mortgage on your home. What a relief!
First, lets tackle the most important item in taking a picture, the camera. What to look for? What is important? How much is it going to cost? For a “Marketplace” camera you will want to look for the following:

-          Great Macro/Close-up setting: Your camera needs to be able to focus within 4” or less to get the kind of shots that show the detail needed. This is especially important for jewelry.
-          White-balance control: White-balance controls the accuracy of colors in a photo by anticipating color temperature. You will want to be able to override full auto-exposure to achieve great shots with great color.
-          Easy to use: Does the camera completely baffle you and are the controls difficult to understand? Pick something you know you will grow comfortable with in a reasonable amount of time.
-          Feels good: You and your camera need to feel good together. Is it too heavy? Too clunky? Difficult to maneuver? You both are going to be spending a lot of time together, make sure you work well with each other.   
-          Cost: is it cost-effective? Can you find it cheaper if you look around a bit online and elsewhere?  A great example is here
A good camera and under $65 if you buy it used on Amazon!  This is just one example so have fun and find your perfect camera.

Next we will tackle some of the simple adjustments you can make while taking a picture like white-balance, flash and exposure settings to give your pictures that polished, professional look. May you discover the artist within!


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