Archive for the ‘Thursday’s Etsy Tip’ Category

Thursday’s Etsy’s Tip

Thursday, June 24th, 2010

I am amazed at how fast the week has gone by! It’s already Thursday and I’m ready to add to my weekly feature helping out other Etsy sellers make their shop a bit more professional. In this last week I have also added a new feature to my website and my business which is my weekly newsletter. I plan to send off weekly newsletters to help fans receive first dibs on new items in my shop, special promotions just for subscribers, and also seller tips that I only include in my newsletter! If you’d like to subscribe you can enter your e-mail address on the right hand side column of my website.

Last week, I let you know my secret to great photo light quality. I decided to stay with the theme of photography this week, addressing the basics of composition.

Composition makes a good photo of a product into a great photo in itself. In this post, I’m going to be talking about my favorite trick to use. There are definitely more tricks and rules that I won’t speak about here, but I encourage you to do some research on them. It’s always good to have your own signature when it comes to your Etsy shop, and photographs can be the best way to personalize your business. Using certain compositions, colors or tricks can make your etsy shop recognizable and keep customers coming back.

My favorite composition technique is to arrange items in a way that enhances the perspective of the photograph, drawing the viewer into the image. In order to achieve this, I try to create a 3-d feeling in a 2-d picture. Using the accessories I choose to photograph my jewelry with, or sometimes even using the jewelry, I make sure to create lines that draw the viewer into my photograph.  I will explain what I mean by using an example from my shop:

Franken Heart III

Franken Heart III

In this first image, you can see a few of my favorite accessories for photos, my small white porcelain vase and  my mother-in-law’s red leather case. The porcelain vase has is textured and has great crevices in it, creating the perfect opportunity to utilize lines in the photograph. In this case the lines seem to appear from the top left hand corner of the photo and lead the eye down towards my Franken Heart III. I use the rules of perspective to enhance the 3-dimensional quality of teh photo. The texture of the leather helps create even more depth. As I mentioned before, I will be including in this week’s newsletter one or two more photography tips just for e-mail subscribers, so be sure to sign up!

Thursday’s Etsy Tip

Thursday, June 17th, 2010

So I’ve decided to add to my growing roster of weekly themed posts. Today is my first Thursday’s Etsy Tip, a weekly Etsy tip for all you Etsy sellers out there looking to increase the traffic to your site. It can be tough to be a newbie on the Etsy scene, I’ve gotten a lot of messages from new sellers asking me for tips. It’s hard for me to respond to all questions, and to respond to them all thoroughly. This is why I’ve decided to start this business tip post. I’m not saying that I know everything about running a business, however, I have learnt a great deal in the last year and half about creating and selling on Etsy. I’d love to pass along the message to others, helping them find their way through the online selling maze!

This first post will center around photography. As many of you most likely know, the good photograph is the key to selling online. If you cannot communicate the value of your product to your customer,  you will not be able to sell said product. You could write a great description, but as the old adage goes a picture is worth a thousand words. when I first started out, I knew that there was a trick to taking amazing photographs. I just didn’t know what it was.

My answer was a cardboard box.

Lighting is the most important part of photographs. In order to be able to take control of you photo quality, you need to take control of your lighting. To do this you need to control the source, and how it lands on your objects. In order to do this you need to make your own light-box.The steps to making a light box are very simple. No matter how ghetto your light-box looks, as long as it’s doing its job, your photos will look pristine.

Step by Step:

1) CHOOSE A BOX : Find a cardboard box you can re-use. Mine is an old banker’s box. This size is good for me since I put it on a desk to take my photos. When choosing the size of your box you should ask yourself a couple of questions:

a) How big is the subject of your photos?

b) What do you want to pose your subjects with?

2) CUTTING: Once the box is chosen, cut two holes (one on each side) of the box using scissors or a box cutter.

3) PAINT : Paint the interior of the box white using poster paint (no fancy paints necessary). I needed to do two coats.

4) PAPER : Once the paint has dried, cover the holes you just cut out of the box with white tracing paper or white vellum. (I use tracing paper, because it’s significantly cheaper than vellum).

5) INSIDE : This is the step that may be hard to explain without a visual. I will attempt it! Choose a high weight paper (any colour you would like the backdrop of your photos to have) cut the paper the width of your box and the length of the back of the box plus the “floor” of the light-box. Place the paper inside the painted box, sticking it to the back “wall” of the light-box and letting it fall and cover the “floor” of the light-box.

6) LIGHTING : Finally take two lights with daylight simulating lightbulbs and place them outside of the two holes you have cut out of the box.

TA DA you have your very own setting for beautiful photos.

Next week I will cover photography arrangement. How to draw a viewer into a photograph using props without taking away from your intended subject! Below are a few very simple photographs I took using my light box. for more examples of my photography you can check out my etsy shop. All of my listings have been photographed in my light box.

One Pearl Ring, $60

One Pearl Ring, $60

Tribal Earrings, $95

Tribal Earrings, $95

Fish Necklace, $120

Fish Necklace, $120