Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Photography

When admiring the photography of my yarn-photo heroes, I often wonder how they do it. I'm not so interested in the cameras and settings (I don't plan on buying a new one for quite some time), but want to know about when and where. Lolly has written a great post about making a lightbox and although I don't have one, I appreciate her generosity. In the same spirit, I'll share my "photo studio".
It's located in the 2nd bedroom, in "the office", in one corner. My "studio" is straightforward: a sheet, on a chair. When not in use, the sheet gets folded up (to avoid the inevitable snuggling by the pup and cats) and the chair goes back to being a chair.

I photograph a week's worth of products all at once, after I've spent the previous week making it. I love this schedule because it gives me free time to create during the week, with a deadline of when at least 5 skeins need to be dyed, spun and dried. During the photo shoot, I try to take at least 3 photos of each of the following "poses":
Swirl:
Hot stuff

Pile:
Vegan delight

Nub:
Grass - Bananiere

side view of swirl:
Fire in the Sky - side

long view of skein
Plum tweed

I take pictures on the weekend, usually 1 or 2 in the afternoon on Saturday (if I have my act together that week) or Sunday (after spending the morning spinning to finish the last bit). The room has high windows that face West and at that time of day the sun is just coming through them, but not directly onto the chair. The best days are sunny, but if it's overcast, I take the pictures in my living room (which has East AND West facing windows and the light is more diffuse).
After taking the photos, I transfer them to my computer, crop the best 5 or 6 in Photoshop (I do NO other alteration of the picture color or clarity: just cropping for size!) and save in a 'ready to list' folder.

If you have any photo tricks or questions, please comment!

2 comments:

dawn said...

I have also found that late afternoon works best. I take more pics for each item...probably a dozen or more of each. I use a free program called photoscape to crop and alter the brightness if necessary. I also find that sometimes if I play around with hue, "level" (whatever that is) and contrast, I can get a more accurate picture. There have been a couple things I just could not get good photos of....those I listed with that info included. One thing is for sure....a flash photo never turns out good! Neither does a photo in direct sunlight. I do the same as you, get in a bright room but not directly in the sun.

Your yarns are beautiful!

tara said...

I don't think I was clear...I take at least 3 shots of 5 different poses...so I have a minimum of 15 pictures/yarn.