Folksy Ltd

Product photography crits - put your product shots up for review!

(Brenda Cumming) #222

I have come to the conclusion that I will NEVER be featured. Because most of my artworks are miniature I have to get a good close up shot of them…and being oblong in shape if I square off the picture, I have a border on two sides…I read on the recent newsletter that you shouldn’t have these borders, but in order to get rid of them and still be able to see my painting, if I squared off the painting , a good percentage of it would be missing and if I placed it on a mini easel etc, all of the detail in these tiny works of art would be missing…So sadly that means no chance for me…
I confess I get a but upset at times that new people come to folksy…(I have been here 7 years) and get featured straight away and it would appear that because their items are able to be photographed in a more pleasing way… they are on the home page for a week.

(Bekki Stevenson) #223

Don’t be put off @teabreaks . I’ve just had a look at your shop, your work is lovely. I especially like your floral paintings. I find it really hard to photograph my work too. I set up shop in September and have not been featured yet. I’m still trying to improve my pics. Maybe you could find a lighter place to take your photos or use a photo box? I noticed that some of your photos are quite dark with shadows behind your work. Or, try photographing them set up in the way they would be displayed? On a nice bright wall?

(Emily Clark) #224

I would like to know if my photos are ok too… Being a painter, white, clean surfaces to photograph on I think help the most, as my work is so colourful - but I don’t want it to look too clinical - hence the butterfly brooches balanced on flowers to provide something different - I’m waiting for Spring to really burst forth, then I can get outside to photograph amongst the Spring blossoms, I’m hoping to start listing my photography jewellery too - but would it be too cliched to balance a daffodil photo pendant, on a daffodil?

(Helen Clifford) #225

I’m no expert in photography, Brenda, but I noticed that Stephanie has se tup some of her minuature paintings on easels with a prop, to show size - that also makes it easier to compose a square picture.

Of course, you want a close up to show the details as well, but if you can catch someone’s eye with the first image, they will want to click on the next to see the detail.

The other thing I notice, is that many of your photos are are a bit dark. Are you able to tweak the brightness/contract etc on your images? I always struggle to getting a good light for photography but you don’t need any very fancy photo editting software to be able to make a big difference.

(Brenda Cumming) #226

thank you Bekki but an aceo measuring jut 2.5" on a wall…mmm…Might need some blue tac and even then there would be a border around it.
As for buying a light box, that is out of the question…pensioner on low income…So I have to make do as best I can…a shame though that being featured is biased in favour of those that can afford expensive cameras and all the extras.

(Brenda Cumming) #227

thanks Helen, I do try to tweak the photos to make them lighter…maybe my laptop makes them look lighter than when other people view them…
I have an enhance button on windows 10 but although it sharpens the detail it removes all the colour from them and no amount of trying brings them back to their true colours.
It is SUCH a pity that photos have to be square…(why is that?)
On the auction site I can just show the painting with NO borders and I sell loads on there with no problems at all…currently standing at over 3000 sales compared to 330+ on here…yet I love Folksy but it does seem to be geared to those who have photography knowledge and things like photoshop which are out of my financial reach.

(Emily Clark) #228

I don’t use my ‘expensive camera’, but a pocket panasonic camera - I use the lightest part of the house which is my conservatory and shoot everything on a white background - I have an old recipe book easel thing (never used for recipe books mind!) and I lean one rectangle piece of white card against it and one piece of white card to place my items on - it’s a simple set up which works quite well. Then I do a bit of tweaking on the computer, white balance and contrasts and what not - you don’t need an expensive set up @teabreaks there’s always a simple way - and especially now with the light improving, you need a ‘white cloud’ day - the set up I’ve just explained… use a pile of heavy books, lean a thick white card against it and one on the flat down on the table - an easel would be great for your pictures and shoot face on, rather then face down - if you find you can’t keep the camera still and there is no mini tripod, use another pile of books :slight_smile:

(Helen Clifford) #229

My phone just makes phonecalls :slight_smile: and my camera is certainly not ‘expensive with all the extras’. As Emily says, there are lots of simple tricks with bits of paper and silver foil reflectors, which cost pennies. I’ve seen lots of threads on here with suggestions.

I expect you will have the Windows Photo Manager on your laptop as standard - don’t bother with the ‘auto correct’ or ‘auto brightness’ buttons but try playing with the Contract and Brightness and ‘adjust midtone’ sliders, that might make the difference.

Folksy of course want to showcase the ‘best looking’ products - so photos which don’t show your items to their best are a disadvantage (and mine certainly are not all good, I struggle with lighting in a small, dark house…). But it’s possible to acheive the ‘look’ with very little outlay.

(Brenda Cumming) #230

thank you Emily, I have tried so many different ways…I don’t have anything high enough to put my aceos on and I cannot bed down to get a better angle.(arthritis…sigh) I have nothing in the conservatory that is white or that I can lean anything on…mind you I DO have a smallish easel but an aceo would be balanced on the bottom bar and would not have a white base.
. I went to my shop and tried to lighten a lot of the photos but annoyingly it changed the proper colours used. I have one lovely snow painting that now looks sky blue and in reality is a beautiful turquoise…so now doesn’t look like it should.SO now I am unhappy with the photo.
I shall just have to plod on regardless. I am a great believer in what is meant to be, so if I get sales I DO, if I don’t then I don’t…in the mean time I shall paint.

(Brenda Cumming) #231

thanks Helen…I have been and lightened a lot of my pictures but it has ruined the colours on some of them, so now they don’t look like they should…grrr.
Pennies are not something that I have really…I have to try and manage with what I can find…
ALso I am carer for sick hubby so I really don’t have much time for setting up photo shoots…never mind…I will just enjoy the painting which IS after all what I do it for. (I don’t have a smart phone either…lol)…
I would still like to know WHY pictures need to be squared off…is that something to do with the programme that folksy use?. It makes my life a headache. and I see people who have photos that are JUST of their paintings…how do they do THAT? IF I do that then when listed the painting shape is distorted…either that or the edges are cut off and people can’t see them.
Don;t seem to have an" adjust mid tone" button…I only have “enhance” which mucks the colour up…Light and dark…which helps and Adjust colour that never seems to help me keep the correct colours of the paintings.

(Helen Clifford) #232

Do you know what program you are using when you find your ‘enhance’ button? Maybe there is someone here who uses it too who could advise you.

(Brenda Cumming) #233

It is just on the windows 10 where I download my pics…other than that I don’t have a clue

(Helen Clifford) #234

Well, with 325 sales, Brenda, you are doing jolly well anyway, so I wouldn’t worry about it! Puts my 16 in the shade!!:slight_smile:

(Brenda Cumming) #235

that has taken 7 years Helen…lol

(Brenda Cumming) #236

Not that it helps Helen but I have faved your shop and the first few items…

(Emily Clark) #237

Would it be possible to ask if my photos are ok too? I live mainly on the ‘E’ side… And do it the same way as these… In fact, I list mainly the same, I always wonder if I were to put the exact same listing on both, would there ever be a chance they both sell at the same time? That’s my only worry - as most of my work is original… And I can’t do the same thing again… But pictures first, too clinical looking, or ok?

(Helen Clifford) #238

Thank you Brenda, I will go and return the favour.

(Emily Clark) #239

Er, why am I being ignored?

(Brenda Cumming) #240

I won;t ignore you Emily…had an early night…this old bag needs her sleep.
I am no authority on photographs, as you have probably gathered. As for listing two places at once, I have never dared to do that…Murphy’s (S**s) law that I would sell the same thing twice and as my work in 99% paintings, that would not be possible for me. I have just been and faved your shop and every item in it…hope that helps you too.x
What I WOULD like to know from someone, is that to help get a mini income to boost my pension, I am now also making and selling hand made cards…(stops me getting too bored)…I list them in my shop as they are finished…but do any of you think that I should keep all my paintings together and all my cards together…(in other words move one lot to the top to make my shop look tidier) and if so, should my paintings be at the top or my cards?..( have my art featured at the top)
thoughts welcomed.
Thank you also to the advice on photographs,. I doubt if I could change the way I take them BUT on everyone’s advice, I am slowly working my way through each one and making them lighter.

(Louise Jones) #241

Hello everyone,

Could you pop over to my shop to look at the photos and give your opinion on what may need changing. I photographed most of them in one go which took ages and I am wondering if they need to be done a bit better? My house is a cottage with terrible lighting so if i need to redo them i think I may have to find somewhere else to photograph them. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.