By now, online shopping is as normal as going to the grocery store and can be done anywhere at anytime. As an ecommerce owner, though, that doesn’t mean you can rest easy and expect money to roll in!
On the contrary, 78% of online shoppers cite not being able to feel and touch products as the most undesirable aspect of the process. This poses a special challenge when it comes to clothing, making its presentation not only important, but vital to your success.
So since that’s the case, just how do you guarantee beautiful apparel photography for your ecommerce site? Follow our short guide and find out!
Prepare The Clothing
In a perfect world, clothing would arrive to your studio perfectly constructed and pressed. But, that isn’t the case, now is it? This means taking the steps necessary beforehand to examine each piece of clothing and remove unsightly tags, steam out unseemly wrinkles, and repair any damage it may have sustained during transit. If you wait until post-production to all this, the quality of your image will suffer drastically. Let’s try to avoid that!
The Importance of a Proper Studio Set-Up
Contrary to popular belief, a proper studio need not be extremely expensive. That said, if you can shell out a few more bucks for extra equipment, you’ll be a lot more versatile because of it. Regardless of what you do, here are the most important aspects to a decent studio setup:
While models are the preferred method in bringing your apparel to life, they’re also pretty expensive. It may be an unfortunate challenge, but nothing impossible to overcome. Instead, style your clothing on mannequins, a cheaper yet still very versatile option. We at BBG can even get rid of the mannequin for you in post-production if you’re concerned the mannequin might be too distracting!
Set Your Camera Accordingly!
There’s no use in shooting if all your camera settings are off. It’s absolutely imperative you know how to manipulate ISO, aperture, and white balance for the most professional looking photos every time!
It’s Not Over Until The Fat Lady Shoots
Now, it’s time to shoot. Don’t get too excited, though, but rather exercise patience and plan out your shots. The more, the better. Try different angles: in front, behind, at various angles, up close and person with details — you really can’t go wrong. The more images you come away with, the more options you have at better presenting the product in question, resulting in higher chances of actually selling it!
Beautifying all the dozens, if not hundreds, of photos in post-production can usually a slog that no one really wants to do. While it’s unavoidable, it can be tedious to devote so much attention and time to the process.
From men’s athletic sneakers and sophisticated monk-strapped dress shoes to women’s flats, slip-ons, and high heels, stylish shoes have never been more in demand. As such, chances are pretty high your e-commerce deals with this lucrative product.
While it’s a fact that footwear can be a fruitful venture, it’s hard to see success if your presentation isn’t up to par, though.
Well, footwear is different from clothing since there isn’t (usually) a model to show it off. So, the key to better footwear sales is consistent imagery across your site. Master the art of taking footwear photography from different angles while keeping them proportional, and you’ll no doubt see increased interest — interest that will translate into more sales!
While it can be tricky achieving these results reliably, it doesn’t have to be. Below is a simple, easy-to-follow, step-by-step photography guide to getting consistent shots every time, courtesy of your friends at BBG!
To set up, you’ll need two pieces of foamcore (preferably square/rectangular, with one bigger than the other) and pins.
The larger piece of foamcore will serve as a base. Use pins to keep it in place after you center it.
The second, smaller piece will be put on top of the larger. For now, we’ll have the smaller piece centered as well.
In addition, the camera you’re using should be on a tripod — but that probably goes without saying!
Our basic setup is now ready: a set, stationary piece of large foamcore with a smaller, mobile piece on top.
Next, place your shoe on top and in the center of the smaller one and place two pins on each of its corners to ensure it stays still. Like this, you can take crisp profile images for each piece of footwear you have without worrying if anything is ever off.
After you’re done, determine your next angle and move the smaller piece of foamcore accordingly. When you’re satisfied, place pins on each of its corners to set it in place. Then, place the shoe on top and snap away!
Wash, rinse, and repeat for each angle and each shoe you need to take a picture of.
None of the above matters if your lighting is off, though. So let’s make sure every single photo is well-lit by following two simple steps:
The final result will redirect the light back to the shoe, create more contrast, and soften the harsher light. In short, guaranteeing awesome shots every time. When you’re done, send them on over to us to really get them to pop!
Three essential techniques will help you take on the challenge of creating white on white photography – applying the proper amount of back lighting, using a grey card, and increasing exposure.
The way in which you use lighting is the key to your success. In fact, your light source won’t be focused on the subject, it will be lighting the backdrop known as back lighting. Sufficient back lighting is needed to keep the white object from fusing with the white background. This can be achieved by using one light source along with white cards to bounce and reflect more light onto the image.
Place your object on a white surface. Next prop a white board behind the object. You can use up to 4 or 5 white boards to surround the subject. Upon shooting the image, the brightness of the light will be evenly dispersed by the box you created with the white boards. Moving the boards around gives you the ability to create your desired light and regulate the quality of your photos.
A grey card should be used to get an accurate exposure reading. A grey card is a piece of cardboard that is the same tone of grey that your camera meter is calibrated for. It allows you to adjust the white balance yourself. Place the grey card in the area where the subject will be shot, grey side facing the camera. Look through the viewfinder focusing only on the grey card and take the reading off that. Dial in the reading on your camera and you are ready to shoot.
Trying to photograph something white on a white background is viewed by the camera as average brightness. Increasing exposure settings on the camera can help. Since you can’t rely on your camera’s screen to assess exposure and you can’t use auto modes, your camera has an exposure compensation manual mode. You can set your exposure in manual mode by zooming in on the white. Setting it 2 stops brighter than average will make it look white yet not be over exposed. Also, putting your camera on a tripod, positioning it on Av mode, and setting the aperture to f/3.2 will make your image brighter than average without being over exposed.
While creating white on white photographs is known to be very challenging, once mastered the results can be spectacular.