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Stellar Product Photos

Lesson 14 from: Secrets of Selling at Craft Fairs: How to Get In, Make Sales, and Grow Your Business

Nicole Stevenson

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Lesson Info

14. Stellar Product Photos


Class Trailer



Craft Shows Should be a Part of Your Business


Introduction: How to Have a Successful Craft Show Experience


Why You Should Be Doing Craft Shows


Is Your Business Ready for a Craft Show?


Now is the Time for Craft Shows


Get Your Product Ready


Branding Your Business


Lesson Info

Stellar Product Photos

Okay we're gonna talk about photos now now that we talked about headshots in case we haven't understood yet great photos or essential that's that's it there are some points I just hammer home like the pricing one in the photos so tips for getting great photos we kind of just talked about this seeking help from a friend you can also go ask a student at the community college you know just go to the photography department say like hey, I'm looking for you know do you have any students that need to build their portfolio reach out on social media we have so many resources at our fingertips now it's awesome and then you would pay them in cash trade the other way you can pay them is publicity by spreading the word to other crafters other makers other people in your industry you know have them you guys work out some kind of deal where hey can you do fifty dollars a head shots for my friends or fifty dollar product photos and then you promote that on your social media into your network so it's ...

kind of like a win win situation copasetic style you can also get better photos yourself so by taking a class there's so many so many resource is like that you could take it in person class if you're in the bay area I think they have a photo classic workshop sf camera stores often have classes too so really good creative life obviously what am I thinking? Creative life has eyes like a julian awesome photography classes ultimately you want to have a dslr camera this is not a photography class so I'm not going to be getting deep into like the technical side of photography but basically what that camera means is that it gives you a depth of field in your photo so when you look at a photo let's say of this and this is really in focus and then I'm out of focus that's what you this is like really like bringing it lowest common denominator style but that's that's basically what what you get from that uh and you know you can also use your iphone like you saw that headshot a couple back that I took with my iphone and that was perfectly fine find for me so there's great editing absa there's also a website I think it's called borrowed lenses dot com which you can rent really nice equipment for a day or so our week or however long you need it pretty cheap considering the kind of equipment you can get um if you wanted to do like your photos of your whole collection maybe all in like a few days yeah and that's like getting organized and getting all of your stuff together so that you're maximizing that rental time with that camera and there are there are some camera shops that rent equipment too yeah, especially if I mean if you live in a major city like san francisco where allah or any major city you're going to be you're gonna be golden um and then tripod we're going to talk about like focus and having sharp pictures and clarity so having having a tripod if you have small objects I think that marlowe did a small object photography class for creative life but that's a whole art art in itself, you know? But you can build your own life box out of wax paper and cardboard so there are no excuses for poorly lit photos none at all on then I always like to use foam core or plywood painted for a backdrop in like a tabletop, so I'm not just like taking pictures on my dining room table or on my floor like my instagram picture last night was on the farm my airbnb er so lighting let's talk about lighting natural lighting is key no flash you know when you go in the bathroom somewhere and they have that horrible lighting and you look like crap that's what non natural lighting makes your stuff my craft so you want to be outdoors or you want to be indoors by a window and you want to utilize what I call the magic hours or overcast weather which is when the light is diffused and that's what a lightbox says it diffuses your light shadows are total bombers on your on your pictures that diffuse light is going to keep people those shadows away sometimes is a little bit of shadow here and there it's like, you know it's it's unavoidable, but you'll see some example it was from really bad photos and you may be you'll laugh and then making a light box for smaller items. So let's, look at this photo here. Sorry, mom. So all of these bad example photos are photos that either I took or my mom took, so we'll be making fun of ourselves. I would never use somebody is like somebody else's bad photos my mom doesn't actually know I'm using these, so I hope she wasn't sumi and creative life right now, but yeah, but I'm showing my bad ones as well. So for this, like the reason I feel like you guys like that so extreme, who would do that? I get photos like this all the time all the time, and they're usually people that don't have websites that are sending me links to their photos. But I have seen a photo like this on a web site before um so when we're looking at this flash boo right, this I took this picture actually doesn't look that bad up here, I took this picture, but you can't even really see what what those are yeah it's backlit so there's I mean, why do I need to see the back of this I'm supposed to be looking at the front of this and I've got all these shadows and I mean the focus is nice I didn't nice job focusing there and now let's look at what good lighting looks like boom right this is an awesome I'm sorry everybody if I just blew your drums out I got really excited this is actually taken by my friend lisa of the maker he sow cow and she does die why projects for our blogged your handmade life and she just kills it on lighting I mean, this picture is like awesome you'll see she has a little shadow down there it's not bothering me is it bothering you? Yeah so to show that it's not blending into the surfaces city on yeah yeah yeah, it gives it that depth. You also want to think about background keep it simple you want to watch out for too much texture pattern you want to think about white or solid colors you know, especially if your item is very textured and pattern and then that phone corman plywood that I talked about earlier look at this there's another one of lisa's photos breaking the rules so totally their pattern but it looks awesome, right? It's yes graph paper beaker yeah um I took that thing this was not a photo that I actually used but this is like a backyard where was screen printing and I mean I get photos like this all the time again background and then we got great great use of background a background that breaks the rules but doesn't awesome job focus you want to make sure that the focal point is sharp not blurry crisp crisp, crisp, crisp and you don't want to get so close you can't tell what it iss which I get a lot too so this is this is great this is a close up but you know again this is lisa's picture she's awesome yeah they're coasters thatyou trials on our block yeah okay we all know why that's not working out we all know why that isthe look at that beautiful close up from lisa props man prop seem to have a purpose why is that prop there why why is it there that prop is there because if that prop wasn't there you might not know that those air coasters right so it makes it makes sense there you don't want the props to be overshadowing your product they're supposed to add to what they're supposed to enhance it and show show that and you also want to think about how the props are styled if they're just thrown together there needs to be thought put into it you don't want to end up with that what is the product there? Believe it or not, I was actually trying to get pictures of that wallet I think I made it it was a deer why project um I'm telling you I feel like you guys think I'm an idiot but go on to go onto our block and look I can take good pictures I swear so this one these were ornaments it wasn't holiday time so I was like what can I hang him on it? It's horrible nice nice prop a nice prop lifestyle shots uh this is your product being used in a setting so this is what god rebecca's huggable pillows some action you know this is showing what is this story this lifestyle that you're selling and you want to make sure that that aesthetic fits your brand maybe you're not comfortable in front of the camera maybe you're not what your ideal customer looks like, which is probably more likely the case reach out trade reach out to your social network you know? Hey, I'm looking for somebody that's a size eight with brown hair you know, like I'm not a jerk but I need this model for my fig who wants some free hearings bad lifestyle shot you know so so many reasons that one that one's great it's like, you know, making local shirt it's like natural if you know what I mean everything wrong good there we talked about this earlier booth shots if you have a great booth display take a picture do not fed your time setting up awesome booth display and not take a picture of it seeing a great booth. Why really puts products in perspective for a jury so the real quick these air cem boost shots you know, like don't take a booth shot of your booth is crappy that's miriam who did that thing? You have a great booth like hers take a shot include include that with your application make sure it's in ah block post make sure they can see it. Okay, so let's do our elizabeth come on up just say your full name and the name of your business so people know where to find you. So elizabeth robles there lizzie and mostly I sold meeting in cushing at craft shows some years ago and you can see some of that stuff on flicker at navy lizzie and then some of my photography not necessarily crafty things on uh dizzy lizzy twelve twenty seven on liquor I was really excited about elizabeth should we call you elizabeth there, lizzie? Well, answer. Yeah, okay either one. Whatever I was really excited there we go so what we're going to be thinking about is what is working in these photos on what could be improved so when I first saw her photos I was like, wow you know, like white. What does she need help on her photos there. Really? Great. I mean, you go. What do you think about lighting, right? Yeah. Look at that. Right. We're going on foot through more scale. The other ones don't. Okay. What are these? Probably coasters, coasters, part of acquittal clusters without props, coasters. So you killed it on the lighting. You know, she's got this grade this great white background. You know, I am focused on those products. Her photographs are clear. They're sharp. You know, I can see that I can see that detail. I can tell she's put thought in time, good effort into this. And it shows it really does. There you go, my mane criticism there. I mean, suggestion. I mean, area of improvement is I really need lifestyle shots for this. I have no idea what these look like on, um, I do understand what you mean about the hair, but I think I'd prefer to see it on a mannequin. I I don't I don't understand if that's like all connected is one scarf or if it's like tuck dan, I'm just like, I'm not exactly sure. And this I'm not sure if it's like cowl neck thing or like when I'm just saying that I don't know this scale so it could be an arm cuff or headband or maybe it's maybe it's like a multiple use things so I want to see it I want to know that I can wear this here I can wear it here I can wear it everywhere um the hangar was a cop out so I didn't have to wearing yeah so that's when we reach out when we reach out to our to our people you know and we reach out to our to our network um and you feel like the producers air looking for that the lifestyle shots also I'll be honest if I got sent that picture I wouldn't have submitted yeah, I just I wouldn't know what it wass and not every craft show a jury is going to be really nit picking on all the stuff that I'm talking about but I'm just telling you how to do the best job that you possibly can you know, I you know I just you just heard me rip apart rip apart the paper stem situation but she got into patchwork you know, so it's not that it's just like trying we always have room to improve myself included so I'm learning so much from you guys as you're learning for me hopefully but you know my biggest thing would be lifestyle shots and keep that rest of that of that awesome lighting and yeah, I want to see a close up a close up with that great depth of field like you have on this shot where I'm like, really focused in there. So I'm seeing a closeup of those stitches. I want to see something that's pulled back. If this is not all hooked together, I want to see what the whole thing looks like. And then I want to see a couple shots on someone you know, I want to see what it looks like on someone do it, so okay, thank you. You feel okay? I do. I do. I I knew the stuff needs to be seen on. I was like I said, the hangar was just really a cop out because I didn't want have to do it. But I can see a manic and might even be yeah, even even in may. I put you and your photos of you in the car phone, don't you? Don't you have any friends? I know you have friends, there's a roomful of friends ready here. You know, maybe one of these people in this room could could be your model. I mean, this is why we build our communities, this is why this is so important, this is why I will thank you so much.

Class Materials

Free Downloads

Craft Show Secrets Syllabus.pdf

Bonus with Purchase

Craft Show Readiness Checklist
Craft Show Timeline Checklist
Profit and Loss Worksheet With Examples
Packing Checklist
Craft Show List
Benefits and Goals Worksheet
Branding Worksheet
Post Craft Show Checklist
Craft Show Application Checklist
Brand Mood Board Exercise

Ratings and Reviews


It was an awesome experience. I learned so much from Nicole. She is entertaining and so knowledgeable that I feel I left the show with soooooo much info. I loved being in the studio audience, I met so many great people, crafters and new friends I feel we all became one big support for each other. I am putting to good use everything I learned. I look forward to coming back to Creative Live for another learning experience. Craft Show Secrets taught me all the ins/outs of craft shows ...I'm excited for my next craft show. Time to Create!!!

Lisa Jones

Great Class! Full of practical information + tools about how to REALLY succeed doing shows. I have attended many a craft show and found an enormous amount of useful tips. I especially loved the bonus material! Thank you Nicole and Creative Live for keeping it real + FUN!!

a Creativelive Student

I've been growing my business successfully online for the last six years, but hadn't shown my work in person for a decade. As a refresher, I took Nicole's craft show class to be sure that I made the most of the time I would have in front of my customers. Because of the preparedness and mindset that I gained from Nicole's teaching, my show was a huge success. My interactions with the customers, producers, and other vendors were genuine and joyful, building a stronger foundation for future business and relationships. This course took the worry and stress off my shoulders so I could enjoy the opportunity that I had. Thanks, Nicole! Tamara Kraft Pithitude

Student Work