Top Tips When Shooting for eBay
• Take the time and care to create a good photograph.
• Make use of good lighting by either modifying existing sources (window light) with reflectors or diffusers, or introducing and controlling your own (desklamps, flash or tungsten).
• Use a plain contrasting background that highlights the item that you are trying to sell.
• Control the quality of the light to minimise reflections, harsh shadows and hotspots on the surface of your item.
• Don’t use the maximum resolution of your camera so as to avoid large files sizes and long upload and display times. (Aim for 1024 x 768 pixels).
• Match your camera’s white balance setting with the type of light source you are using.
• Capture photographs of the whole item as well as detail shots. Get in as close as possible for these using the macro function on your camera if necessary. To fully inform your buyer, highlight both features and flaws in the detail photographs.
• Use a tripod to avoid blurry pictures due to camera shake during long exposures.
• Avoid using pop-up or on-camera flash units where ever possible as they create direct, full frontal lighting with harsh shadows. Instead fire the flash from one side or used light from other sources such as windows or a table lamp.
Accessories for the Table-top Photographer
With in the past few years more and more accessories have entered the market that makes the desktop product photographer’s job a lot easier. Now a quick search on the internet will reveal at least a dozen manufacturers who produce portable light tents or specialist table-top light sources that are suitable for small product work. Check out the offerings from the following:
Lastolite Table-top cube – www.lastolite.com
Lowel Ego – www.lowel.com
EZcube – www.ezcube.com
Universal lighting tent – www.perlyinc.com
Xpro light tent – www.xprogear.com
SV light tents – www.smithvictor.com
To learn more about Still Life
photography, including lighting
techniques, then check out these
books from Rotovision:
Still Life & Special Effects Photography
by Roger Hicks and Frances Schultz
Still Life (Black & White)
by Terry Hope (ISBN: 2880465494)