Jessica Wibberley

Jessica Wibberley is the head of digital at British Ceramic Tile

Tips for retailers for successful product photography

Posted 19th Oct 2017

As homeowners increasingly turn to online sources for inspiration when updating their homes, the need for striking photography showcasing your products is in more demand than ever. Websites such as Houzz and Instagram channels are leading the way with photography, making everyone sit up and think about how to execute style-led real home lifestyle photography but in a modern, informal fashion.

While we’d all appreciate large marketing budgets that stretch to include a professional photographer, for many retailers it just simply isn’t an option. So where do you start when updating your website or social content? British Ceramic Tile digital head Jessica Wibberley shares her top tips for capturing an effective photograph:

Let in the light
Try to let natural light in wherever possible to help brighten the settings. You can usually tell when there’s artificial lighting involved, as the colour looks saturated, making the set look less bright and airy as it would with natural light. If you’re shooting a kitchen or bathroom, try to utilise a space which has use of large windows, or if you’re shooting a singular product, turn objects towards the light for a soft effect – but stay away from direct sunlight if possible.

Avoid zooming in
Zooming dramatically reduces the quality of the photo, even if only slightly. If you need a close-up, just move closer! You can then crop the photo as much as you feel suitable, without decreasing the sharpness of the image.

Composition is key
Most smartphones and cameras have a grid function, whereby lines appear on the screen. This will help align photos, and make them look more professional. This way, photos will be symmetrical and there will be no slanted shots.

Special features
Always avoid using the flash, unless absolutely necessary. Most cameras are equipped with great low-light technology, which is an excellent feature if you know how to use it.

Start by turning off the flash and tapping the darkest area on the screen. This allows the camera to focus on that specific spot. The camera will then automatically adjust to the correct lighting level. If the image then seems too bright, try selecting a slightly lighter area to help even it out.

Less filters, more fine-tuning
Filters are great for certain shots, but should be avoided if you want to give a true representation of a product. Not only do filters saturate an image, they make the colours of the product completely different to the real thing.

If you’re using a smartphone, try fine-tuning the image properties by using your phones editing software or Instagram to adjust the brightness, contrast, warmth and saturation.

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