How the Details in Your Photography Can Add Value to Your Handmade Product

When shopping in person, customers inspect products with all 5 of their senses. They’re able to look closely at your product and figure out the quality of the craftsmanship, the color, texture and so on.

But you can’t do that when shopping online. A customer can’t pick up and inspect your product like they can in person. 

That’s why it’s important to think about showing as many detailed shots as possible of your product in your photographs.

Here are some reasons why you should be getting a little closer to your products next time you need to photograph them.


Show off the quality of your work

If you make wooden bath mats, photograph the interesting patterns, grains or natural flaws of the wood. Take a few shots of how the wooden slats are all connected together to create a sturdy mat. 

Did you just finish making a gorgeous vase? Get some close up shots of the unique indentations you added to give the piece some added personality.

If you create one-of-the-kind oil paintings, photograph the layered textures details of your work. You can even photograph different parts of the painting to show the quality of the paint used in the piece.

Labels ARE important

Whether it’s a label indicating what designer made a handbag you thrifted or a product label you worked hard to create, be sure to photograph it. Labels give the impression that you’re not just a hobbyist, but that you take your business and products seriously. It helps build your brand and remind customers of you in the future.

Labels can also indicate sizing information and care instructions for your product which is important. While you may add this information in the listing description, showing your customer the information can also be found on the product is a great detail to capture.

Flaws and imperfections are important

If you’re selling something second-hand or maybe one of your pottery mugs didn’t come out perfectly but totally usable, be sure to photograph any imperfections or flaws. 

Customers need to know if something you’re selling has a hole, a stain or maybe the color is off before making a purchase. No one wants bad surprises when they buy. 

Always remember when selling online, your customer can’t touch, feel, smell or taste your product. So it’s your responsibility as the seller to provide your customers all of the visual information they need to feel comfortable purchasing from you whether your product is $5 or $500.

By being detail-oriented when it comes to photographing your product shows that you care about your business, product and customers. It’s a way for you to educate and show the quality of your work to your customer so they can appreciate what you make even before they buy. It also helps build your reputation as being a trusted seller that will keep customers coming back for business. 

What details do you capture when photographing your products?

Why you should be using color backgrounds to stand out in addition to white backgrounds in product photography

When it comes to product photography, most people think about photographing against a white background.

Granted the white background is awesome because:

  1. It eliminates all distractions from your product
  2. It’s clean
  3. It’s simple
  4. It’s easy for your product to be showcased in blogs, online magazines, etc.
  5. It makes for nice consistency
  6. It looks super professional

But does that mean you should photograph your products only on white background?

Heck no.

Some people assume white backgrounds are boring and while on some level, they are because there’s not a lot of personality to them, it doesn’t mean you shouldn’t have fun with other color backgrounds.

I grabbed my trusty little penguin friend aka Periwinkle, and some colored construction paper I had lying around the apartment and took him on a colorful photo shoot.

As you see below, I shot him on the typical white which is your standard product photo look.

But then I shot photos of him against blue, green, yellow, orange and red.

How FUN do these color backgrounds look?? These would make for fun social media posts because who wants their social media feed to look like an online retail shop with all white backgrounds? Solid color backgrounds can bring a product to life in a way white backgrounds don’t.

Don’t be afraid to photograph with color. Find the colors that make your product pop or that compliment the colors. Try out bold colors or go more subtle with shades of pastels, light grays or tan shades.

If you want to add texture to your color backgrounds, grab a piece of scrap wood and a can of your favorite color spray paint and voilà, you have a new, fun background for your products!

If you want to dive into understanding the psychology of colors when it comes to marketing, check out this interesting article.

Have you experimented with solid color backgrounds in your product photography? Let me know below in the comments!

The week in review – photography

Observations from this week:

  • While I love cooking and eating at tasty places, I’m working on not taking all food photos! A lot of food photos don’t make this weekly summary, but that’s ok. There’s so many other things to photograph in life other than food, but it can be hard not to photograph delicious looking food, right??
  • I realistically end up loving maybe 1-3 photos a lot out of all the photos I take each week. The others are fine, but some stand out a lot more for me than others. We’ll see if that changes over the next few months.
  • Remember not to take photos all the time, especially when others are around. It’s important to be present with what’s going on in life and enjoy the company of others. Remember to put the camera away!

The best photography subject you can photograph literally anywhere you are

So you’re working on your photography and taking more photos but you’ve run out of ideas.

Or maybe today you’re just not feeling inspired and nothing looks interesting.

Or maybe you’re doing the 365 photography project and you need to photograph something today.

Or maybe you need photos for a social media post for a quote card but you’re tired of looking at stock photos that everyone else is using.

So what can you take photos of that’s easy, can be found literally anywhere and is interesting?


Texture is everywhere and it’s my favorite subject of choice when I don’t think there’s anything interesting to photograph.

Texture really comes alive when you play with light and angles. textures can appear flat when lit straight on, but if you change your camera angle up a bit you can get some awesome photos. Photographing early or late in the day can give you some great lighting too so experiment with the time of day.

The thing I love most about texture photography is you can create really cool abstract photos that can keep a viewer guessing what it is. It also adds tactility to a photograph and depth. Plus, if you’re someone who finds getting close to subjects challenging, photographing textures is a great way to practice getting up close and looking for the details all around us. Don’t forget, you can even photograph textures at home so you don’t need to leave the house on those rainy days when you just want to lounge around in your jammies.

So where can you find textures? If you’re stumped as to what textures to photograph, here are some suggestions:

  • fabrics (clothing material, rugs, carpets, etc.)
  • wood
  • metal
  • walls
  • nature (plants, trees, etc.)

Try this out next time you’re wondering what to photograph. What’s your favorite go-to subject to photograph? Let me know in the comments!

The week in review – photography

I held a photo walk and a photo workshop this weekend so I got extra photos in this week. It’s been interesting grouping photos together and seeing different subject themes.

Some observations from this week:

  • I took a lot of photos looking up! The architecture in San Francisco is really beautiful when you start looking at the amount of molding and details found in building entrances, window frames, etc. Look at buildings where you live and see if you find any cool details you never noticed before and take some photos.
  • It’s crazy the amount of discarded objects/trash I find walking around or waiting for public transportation. That could make for a photo project in itself now that I think about it.
  • I took an origami class and it’s such a fun activity to do! So many beautiful pieces of paper to fold with and you create your own works of art in the process. If you haven’t tried it, try it out!