Sunday, 15 February 2015

My Latest Adventure: Taking Product Photos of My Paintings

Products and photography by Teodora Totorean

While reading about selling online and how important it is to have good photos, one advice was to make sure you include a product photo as well. In the case of paintings, for example, it simply isn't enough to show the whole painting, a detail from it and a side photo, but also how your artwork looks like in a home décor setting.  

As I am also passionate about interior design and I am constantly changing my home décor by adding various objects or moving things around, I was keen to start taking product photos of my paintings to show their potential of enhancing people’s homes.

I would like to say that I am not an expert in taking photos as my husband is the photographer in our family, but I was willing to learn and give it a go at taking photos of my paintings in situ as my own independent project.

What image do I want to convey with my product photos?

I like a fresh, clean look, with lots of white so my colourful paintings stand out. A white bookcase and a few vases with flowers are the perfect settings to photograph my paintings and this could unify the diverse range I've got right now, from abstract music artworks to floral, naive and mixed media art.

The white enamel “Home Sweet Home” vase goes perfectly with nearly any artwork. I've used it especially with paintings framed in white as I like various white tonalities and textures, but I also used it for other floral artworks. A hand painted vase was perfect for some of my still life pieces while a brown wooden folk vase complemented the autumnal themed artworks.

Other useful objects: candles, decorative plates, wooden figurine, vintage typewriter, pottery, etc.

Products and photography by Teodora Totorean

Taking photos, not as daunting as I thought

Yes, it is true, although I must admit that my husband did all the settings in the camera for me. He created a user profile for me and gave me a memory card, so anytime I want to take photos I can use the camera without him being around to show me.

We have a Pentax K3 with a 50mm f 1.8 lens and the settings for my photos are mostly automatic – small JPG (only 6MP, for small file sizes, perfect for online publishing) in Program mode, auto ISO 100-400, auto exposure and aperture. I use LiveView mode to frame the scene, I just have to turn the dial to User1 and everything just works.

The best light for me is the morning till midday, as in the afternoon it can get a bit too yellow, but this could be just me. Next, I edit my photos in Picasa, which is very easy to use, even for a non-technical minded person like me. There is a button for everything: crop, straighten, brightening, etc. But my favourite thing ever must be creating collages; I just can’t have enough of them, as you can see J.

I slowly changed the overall look of my online shops, both on Folksy and Etsy, and I am quite pleased with the result. Even though I still work in small collections of different styles and themes, I think that the product photos unify them. What do you think?

White Flowers in a Vintage Mug by Teodora Totorean - SOLD

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