Hello stamping friends!!
I have a fun tutorial to share today. I have a tutorial on how I take photos of my cards.
Now, in no way do I think my photos are perfect - I'm not a photographer! So don't think that I think that my cards, projects, or photos are the "model of a perfect card"!! But I do hope that my tutorial can help anyone who is struggling with getting a better photo of their projects.
1. Find a spot to take your photos. Some people use photo tent, but I prefer to have natural lighting and I'm too lazy to go outside (plus going outside could bee too bright or too dark...or too wet!! I have found that having a set place to take a card is important. Find a spot that works for you and use that each time so that you have consistent photos on your blog.
I take my photos in my storeroom's closet because it's right in front of a window. Please ignore the mess - I sometimes have a few things on my floor...don't judge me!! LOL
I have white semi-sheer curtains in my stamping room so that I have lots of natural light, but neighbors can't see into my room (it freaks me out thinking people can see me while I'm working).
When I take my photos, I pull the curtains to the side to give added natural night. I had to leave the curtains down for the photo above since it's hard to take a picture of a sunny window!
2. Use a neutral background.
I use 2 white cardstocks on the bottom and behind my card. The white helps to reflect the natural lighting.
3. Place the card in the center of your background and get "eye-level" with the card. Stand the card up - don't lie it down flat. I usually take at least 3 photos. One is bound to be better than the others and it's a lot easier to delete unused photos than it is to set the card back up and get additional photos if the first ones didn't turn out.
You may have to move your card around or change the position of your camera to get the card straight-on. I usually use the frame of the camera to line up with the edges of the card - if the top of the frame in the camera is parallel with your card, then you should get a "square" picture of a square card.
As you see in the photo above, my shot includes the background as well - part of my stamping room on the left and the window on the right. The point is to get the whole card in the shot and have it be square since it's a square card.
Take a photo of the card standing up. This makes it easier to get a straight-on shot. If you lie the card down flat, it's harder to get a straight shot and the card will look warped (larger on one side than another). Just think, if you have it flat, the only way to get a straight-on shot would be to stand over the card - this can add a shadow on your card from your body (you are probably blocking some light creating a shadow) and your camera is farther away so you will have to zoom in which could distort the clarity.
4. Using a photo editing program (most computers come with them) to crop your card...
I leave a little frame around the card, but leave out most of the background.
5. The cropped image is great and would work if you don't have a photo editing program. I have Photoshop so I will edit the photo a little more.
First, I use the "Auto Smart Fix" option. The photo below is the same photo above, but after the "Auto Smart Fix" enhancement...
It makes the image a little more clear and adjusts the colors to more of a true color.
6. I add a little more brightness so that the whites are a little more "white"...
Just a slight change, but I think it makes the photo a little more crisp.
Now usually at this point, I would add the watermark. However, I watermarked all images for this tutorial since they are being posted on the internet. If you don't want your photos stolen from your blog and used for a different purpose, then watermark them!!
7. I usually show at least 3 shots of my card in my blog posts: The card straight-on, a close up of the image, and a side/wonky shot that usually shows the dimension of the elements on the card (because most cards are not 2-D, but 3-D in real life). If I decorate the inside of the card, I show that as well.
Next I take a closer view of the image by getting closer to the image.
Since I don't need the whole card, I get close enough that I get a clear shot of the image without getting too close to distort the image (ever see those "Dog" photos that their noses look larger than their heads? That's because the camera is REALLY close to the nose so it distorts the view).
I don't use the Zoom option on my camera because usually the zoomed images can get fuzzy because of the pixels (or something like that).
I use a point-and-shoot cheap camera to take pictures of my cards. But there are expensive cameras that would take better photos and have special zoom lenses. However, you don't have to have an expensive camera to take a good photo of a card!
8. Next I edit the photo by using the Auto Smart Fix option then crop the image...
I add the photo to the blog post using a "medium"option for my taller-but-narrow photos otherwise they show up HUGE on the blog.
10. The next shot is the side/wonky view...
This view shows the dimension on the card. In the photo above, you can probably see that Tilda is added with dimensionals and the flowers pop off the card.
11. Crop the image...
12. Edit the photo - I used Auto Smart Fix which adjusts the color and clarity/sharpness...
13. I add a little more brightness...
Now with the closer view, you can probably see that the white swirls are not glued down, but pop off the card, the butterflies are 3-D, and there is also dimentionals under the sentiment in the center so the sentiment panel is curved.
So that's it! You can see how I added these photos to a blog post here.
I hope this tutorial helps at least one person who may have been struggling to get a clear shot of their photos.
Thanks for stopping by! Happy stamping!!