May 26, 2010

How to take a product photo, made easy.


The adage, ‘a picture is worth a thousand words’ is never more appropriate when talking about online commerce.

The best thing you can do for your product (after making it of course ;)) is to take a professional looking, well produced photo.

I know, I hear you, “I can’t afford to get professional shots of my stock” “I don’t have a expensive DSLR (Digital Single Lens Reflex) camera like the pro’s use.” “I don’t have room or the money for a professional product lighting/studio set up.”

Well guess what? You don’t need to!

By using items from around your home or inexpensive items you can find at stationary or craft stores and a simple point and shoot digital camera you can create professional looking photo’s of your products.

The basics you will need to take a professional product photo.

  • Digital Camera
  • Tripod
  • Black and white card
  • Desk Lamps with high watt globes.
  • Access to natural light (if possible)
  • Light box/tent or similar set up
  • A computer and image editing program.

Digital Camera

Any digital point and shoot camera is fine, the mega pixels amount doesn’t really matter as the images don’t need to be print quality as they will only be used on the internet. A handy thing to have on your camera, (most already do) is a tripod jack, this is located on the underside of the camera.

camera Tripod socket 2a imaging-resource



Locate your flash and turn it off, the best light you can use for taking photo’s would be natural light, but even if you are using lamp light your flash still needs to be turned of as to not cause cast shadows or dark spots.

The best way to know if your flash is off look for this symbol    Flash-Off-Icon  . If you do not see this symbol refer to your camera instructions for how to turn it off.

Now locate your macro option. Macro means close up. Look for this symbol Macro-icon .

Ensure your lens is clean, smudge and lint free.


You don’t need an expensive tripod for taking product shots. There are a few different types of tripods that would be perfect for this.

table top tripod

Tabletop Tripod


camera on a tripod - wiki

              Telescopic Tripod


Joby-GP1-E1EN-Gorillapod-Flexible-Tripod Gorillapod 300

              Flexible tripod

Some of the different ways to pose the flexible tripod


Light box/tent or similar set up

Professional light boxes can be expensive but you can by them cheaper on eBay, but the alternative is making your own light box or light set up.

Here are some link to easy DIY Light Boxes.

How to make an inexpensive light tent -

Homemade light box for product photography  -

DIY light box tutorial -

Easy white box light for product photography -

IMG_7504_light_box IMG_7508_light_box jasontomczak

To find more tutorial simply Google ‘DIY  light box/tent’.

Background/Back drop

Any colour can be used but white looks the most professional and can be easily worked with later in the editing process. It also depends on what your photographing. The background is there to make the item being photographed stand out, it is plain as to not distract from the product. A large sheet of card stock is perfect for a back ground, it can be curved to give a seamless backdrop.

Desk lamps/lighting.

Lighting is very important when it comes to shooting a professional looking product photo. Any desk lamp is fine but you will need a high watt light bulb. The more light the better. Play around with what amount of light is best for what your shooting.

If you are able to get good natural light where your shooting that can look great too, but the good thing with setting up your own lighting is that you can have control (you don’t have to worry about any pesky clouds).

Computer and Image editing software.

Some of you may be familiar with Adobe Photoshop which is a great way to spruce up your images before posting, but it can be VERY expensive.

Did you know there are free and easy ways to edit your photo’s?

There are programs like Gimp with is a downloadable image editing program based on Photoshop or if you were wanting to try out Photoshop before buying, you can download a 30 day trial from the Adobe website. Picasa is also an easy program to not only help organise your photo’s but also do basic photo editing (all you will need for editing your product photo’s.

An alternative to downloading is using a photo editing website such Picnik, there is no registration required, while you can pay a inexpensive yearly fee to have access to the premium version it isn’t necessary for what we are doing.

The best thing to do to bring out the best out of your photo’s is to play around with the light and contrast. These can made a dull photo pop. Its best to play around and see what looks good.

In conclusion…

The beauty of a digital camera is that you can take heaps of pictures and if you don’t like any of them just press the delete and take some more. Take lots of pictures of your products from all different angels, you might find it presents better looking at it from a different way. Make sure your product is clean and looks presentable, remove any stray threads or fluff/lint and display the item attractively.

Make sure the background is appropriate to the item (If you have a light product a darker background would look better and vice-a-versa with a darker product.)

Use your tripod! The tripod can be an invaluable tool, especially if you get hand shake etc. To make sure there is no chance of camera shake utilise your self timer or if you have one a camera remote. If you don’t have a tripod or don’t want to invest in one there are many simple and creative ways to create your own tripod, Google ‘DIY tripod’ or ‘Make your own tripod’.

Spend time getting the best out of your products, think of product photo’s this way, customers are ‘feeling with their eyes’ so you have to get as much of the product across in a single photo. It might sounds impossible but I can assure you it isn’t if you follow the above tips.

I hope this post has been useful to you. If you have any other helpful tips for taking your product photo’s at home feel free to leave a comment and I will add them to future blog posts.

May 25, 2010

New to Oz Handmade

Oz Handmade is excited to announce our latest addition.

We are now accepting crafting items such as patterns, hand printed material etc.

Oz Handmade now has now got a select few Funky Friends Factory patterns in stock.

If you haven’t heard of Pauline and her Funky Friends you will now :D Pauline designs and creates all the patterns herself. I had the please of meeting Pauline at the Melbourne Stitches and craft show at the beginning of the month and was blown away by her gorgeous creations.

Now in stock:

                    Heather Hippo                     


Tilly Tortoise


Dilby Duckling




Gertie Gecko


Be quick to pick up your gorgeous pattern, we only have a few in stock! All patterns are $12.20 (+p&h).

x g

May 24, 2010

Oz Handmade Explained, Part 2

Why sell online?

There are many benefits of selling with Oz Handmade.

  • You can sell your items from the comfort of your home, no more getting up at the crack of dawn or battling the elements.
  • You set your own hours, you can list items at 3am if you want to!
  • No running around or spending your hard earned $$ on setting up your stall, no tables to rent no tent to put up!
  • If life gets to hectic and you feel you need to take a break from the selling that’s not a problem, simply put your store on vacation mode and you won’t accrue any fee’s, when your ready to get back on board, simply enable your page and let me know and I can post it on our FB page and our blog.
  • No hidden fee’s or expense, You are NOT charged commission on items sold nor are there any uploading or listing fee’s
  • A once a month, low cost fee payable via paypal or direct debit.
  • There are NO contracts to sign or minimum sign up period.
  • You can have as little or as much stock as you desire.
  • There is no need for credit cards.
  • Oz Handmade currently has over 1000 fans on our facebook page and the site receives over 2000 hits per day to the site.
  • If you don’t have the time to put into running a whole store Oz Handmade also has a wholesale option, contact us to find out more.

Over the next few coming weeks you will be seeing a lot of changes at Oz Handmade and here on the blog, we are having a complete makeover! New logo, new colours, a whole new look!

Here’s a sneaky peaky of the new colours for the site, what do you think? I love it!

Colors for Oz Handmade

There will also be some new and exciting opportunities for both Oz Handmade and our store owners but they are all hush hush at the moment, of course I will update you when the time comes, but in the mean time watch out for updates and sneak peaks of the new look site and for our grand reopening (date to be announced!).

Exciting New Store Special


Have you heard of The Contemporary Handmade Alliance (Facebook page)? Tania, (owner and creator of Chicken Inc. Creative) has created CHA to assist those of us who are needing some guidance when it comes to turning your hobby into a business, CHA is a great community of like minded crafters sharing tips and tricks about getting started in the industry!

Oz Handmade is honoured to be a sponsor of this great organisation and to celebrate our partnership we are going to be doing an exciting special for NEW STORES. The announcement will be made tonight so be sure to stop by their Facebook page for more information.

If you wish to open a store with Oz Handmade or have any questions feel free to contact me via email, any time.

Thanks for reading!

x g


May 23, 2010

Oz Handmade explained, part 1.

Over two parts I am going to explain a little bit about who Oz Handmade is and what we do.

Oz Handmade is basically and online craft market, but instead of sitting at a traditional market freezing off your behind or getting 3rd degree burns from sitting in the Aussie sun you can run your market store form the comfort of your own home, 24/7! (You don’t even have to get out of your PJ’s ;))

Oz Handmade was stared in April of 2009 by Michelle Lowe, I took over the day to day running of the site in November 2009 and will officially own the business next month, woohoo!!!! (Can you tell I’m excited?)

The online market was created to support our clever Aussie crafters wanting to make the leap from crafting for friends and family to actually making some extra cash (to buy more craft supplies of course, lol). We are proud to be 100% Oz owned and made, our stores only sell within Australia so we can support our precious economy. Another benefit of only selling within Australian is the cost of postage is kept to a minimal, no overseas postage/insurance to worry about!

At Oz Handmade we DON’T charge commission on items sold nor are there any uploading or listing fee’s! You only pay a a low fee once a month.

To be continued tomorrow and stay tuned for a special offer!

May 18, 2010

And the winner is…….

I have finally had the time to draw the winner of the gorgeous quilt which was kindly donated by Paradise Quilters.
006 033
And the winner is…
CONGRATULATIONS! I will be contacting you via email shortly!

May 17, 2010

Long time no see!

It has been a while since we’ve seen one an other hasn’t it! Well we shouldn’t let it happen again!

ALOT has been happening at Oz Handmade since we last spoke. We’ve had quite a number of new store’s open their virtual doors since last we met, We had a booth at the Melbourne Stitches & Craft show earlier this month, it was a great experience, I love love love the people I shared the incubator with. A few of my neighbours were Nic from Yardage Designs, Jodie from Ric Rac and Pauline from Funky Friends Factory! I had an absolute blast meeting like minded crafty people as well as getting the word out about our awesome site Oz Handmade! We sold a fair bit of stock as well as handing out over 300 brochures! I have already had a few people email me enquiring about opening a store!

Here are some pics from the 5 days of the show!




I’m going to put lots more pics up on IHC so will add the link when they’re up.

Onto more exciting news!

Oz Handmade is getting a makeover! As you can see by the blog we are going through a bit of a transition, we are changing everything, logo, the looks and feel of the site.

I’ll keep you posted on any new things that happen along the way, I can’t wait, I’m soooooo excited!