etsy shop help:: taking great photographs

| handmade | indie biz

etsy shop help

{if you’re new to savior faire or etsy- visit our first post to learn more}

taking great photos that reflect your style and represent your product well is the key to online selling.  your customers can’t feel, smell, or wear your product, so they must rely on the quality of your images.  having simple, chic, stylistic photos can work wonders in boosting your online sales.


lighting :: if at all possible, use natural lighting.  flash generally won’t work for smaller items and usually gives an off-putting effect.  try setting up by a window or outside.  or, if you’re outside, shoot in the morning or afternoon as the noon sun is a bit harsh for photos.

|almeda pottery|

background :: this is where you can really style your photos and brand yourself.  however, you want to keep your backgrounds as simple as possible.  no one wants to see your cat or that 50’s mixer in the background.

work to create an overall theme for your shop.  use the same or similar elements in all of your shots and your shop will have a nice, inviting, cohesive look.  generally, a lighter background works nice and puts your product in the spotlight.  this ‘how to style your photos‘ article gives great advice and how-to’s on styling.

|maries vintage|

what works :: take as many photos as you can, from as many angles as you can.  play with light and see what works best.  your buyer will want to see the front, back, and sides, along with some detail of you work.  you can always crop in and edit later, but you want to know that you have plenty to choose from later on.

one of my favorite photo editing tools is  if you don’t have fancy editing software like photoshop, picnik allows you to edit all of your photos- for free!

|sarah seven|

the shakes :: try to use a tripod, if you have one, to reduce camera shake.  blurry photos never make you say- i have to have that.  if you don’t have a tripod- get creative!  steady it on a table or the back of a couch.  even leaning on something to help stabilize will help reduce camera shake.

|french logic|

get creative :: get creative and a bit editorial.  take from interesting angles and play with cropping.  using a more editorial pic as your first item’s picture on etsy might grab attention and make your browsers click out of curiosity.  you don’t necessarily want to give it all away up front, right?

|efia fair|

do you have any tips on taking great photos? please share!


  • Although natural light is great, sometimes we can’t wait for it. The other option is to use a light tent. I just blogged about this, lots of pix included, here:
    Take a look, I got lots of great comments on the results, so I’ve gotta be doing something right!

  • Thank you for the article – REALLY good photographs are one of my current hurdles…I will take any tips I can get!

    Gotta go check out candied fabrics “light tent”!!

  • I’ll never turn down great tips for photos ;) Always work in progress ;)Thank you! candice

  • One of my favorite tips? Diffuse harsh sunlight by using any of the following:

    • Wax paper
    • Vellum
    • White Tissue Paper

    You can use any number of layers you like, but I find that one layer works really well for me!

  • This is awesome. I have been searching for an article like this for a while. I think my photos are ok but needing that more “editorial” feel as you described above. Thanks so much :)

  • Oh I forgot to add. I like natural light. I set up little studios in my kitchen and use a white canvas as my background. I have a collection of vintage-feel scrapbooking paper and to mix it up, I often incorporate these to create some interest. Going to check out the light tent…

  • I’ve been struggling with taking photos, I took some in the sun and there was a glare, or a shadow? If I’m outside what to look for and how should I take photos of objects with no glare or shadow? Even in my window, i had glare and shadows, they really like me or I really like them, help :) Thanks for sharing

    • hi nunya! sure!

      direct sunlight can often be too harsh for photography, so what you want to do is soften it up a bit. try to take your photos away from the window but use the natural light created from the window. does that make sense? you can also soften direct sunlight be using paper, tissue paper or white cloth over the source. if you need to take your photos outside, try to take them in the morning or late afternoon as to avoid the harshest part of the day. hope this helps, let me know if you have any questions!

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