We love Etsy, it’s filled with handmade joy. We’ve been allowed to rummage through their blog archives and share our findings with you. This month’s article helps you make the best of smartphone photography!
Story by Lisbeth Ortega
When it comes to your Etsy shop photography, what’s the advantage of shooting with your smartphone? In short, it’s a time-saver: You can shoot, edit, and list your photos in one go. And you won’t get caught up in cords to transfer photos from your phone to a computer. Secondly, if you don’t have a DSLR or a point-and-shoot, phoneography will save you money.
Although your phone’s resolution might not be as high as top-of-the-line DSLRs, as long as you’re not planning to print your product photos, your smartphone’s resolution is plenty of pixels for the web. Ready to give phoneography a whirl? Check out our tips. But, first things first: If you’re using an iPhone, download this free app from the Apple Store; if you’re using an Android, we’ve got tips for using other tools.
Smartphone Photography Tips
1. Make sure you have plenty of light. When you’re shooting in a low-light environment, your smartphone knows. To compromise, your phone adjusts the exposure to let in as much light as possible. The result is “noise” — that not-so-pretty grainy look. Here’s the fix: Fill your shooting area with light! We recommend the following three tips to illuminate your product from every angle. You’ll achieve the best results with all three, but if anything, choose one of the first two and a bounce card.
- Shoot near a window.
- Use an external source of light, such as a flash or lamp.
- Use a bounce card, which is a white mat board or foam.
DIY Tip: Make your own bounce card by taping a piece of paper to a piece of cardboard.
2. Use a tripod or a timer. Camera shake comes from touching your camera to set off the shutter. Though you might think your phone should be able to remain still while you tap the shutter, truth is, it’s so lightweight and small that it shakes ever so slightly. Learn more about how to prevent camera shake and blur with these tips.
3. Avoid zooming. Using your phone’s zooming feature delivers similar results as cropping your photo to provide a closer view. The process actually decreases the quality of your photo because it enlarges your photo without changing the resolution. If your goal is to take quality item close-up shots, try phone lenses. Macro lenses provide an incredibly close-up view of your product, which is good for showing fine detail. You can also play around with fisheye, telephoto, and wide-angle lenses. Read tips about lenses and more here.