"Craft photography fundamentals" online course review
Recently I took an amazing class about craft photography. Somehow it changed perspective about my photos and I finally could tell why I didn't like them too much. You already know how much I love Creative Live, but this online course changed so much for me. I'm talking about more followers, higher engagement, and bigger sales!
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My experience with "Craft photography fundamentals"
Here's a little bit of a story time: a few months back I started developing my Instagram feed and moved from an absolute mess of all the things I do to a more cohesive theme containing doll related photos. I mean that's a smart move for every artist or crafter out there who treats their artistry like a business. Doll lovers who visit my account not always like to see what I eat or how my vacation is going. They're here for dolls! But when I've implemented this transition my feed started to look dull. Like all the creativity and my personality were sucked out of it.
As you can see it wasn't that bad, but for me that was the hardest thing. How do you fix something when you can't put a finger on what's broken? The craft photography course opened my eyes. I didn't use my brand colours, I didn't use any props to reveal my personality and the worst part I wasn't telling any story with my photos. Scroll through my Instagram feed and tell me if you see a positive change? I know I do!
Inspired by a wonderful teacher Candice Stringham, the same day, as I watched the course, I started to reshoot the listing images for my Etsy shop. Applying the methods I've just learned I was able to finally take the photos I've always wanted.
Once again, the "before" photo wasn't that bad, but when I took a new picture my immediate reaction was: "Hey, that's me! That's how I want other people to see my brand." And it's true! I've made just a few tweaks and the photo turned out so much better. Including the colours. It's so important to show the customers true colours. In an online world, the photo is an only way to give your customer real life experience: to feel the texture, size, colours, and the craftsmanship you did! So why should you sabotage your own business with poor photography?
This class did an impact on my art dolls photography as well. Recently I finished new OOAK doll and took a few photos of the dolls shoes. I always loved to show tiny details of my dolls. But before this class, I did it all wrong.
I know these are two different dolls, but both of them have really detailed shoes. Except you can't see the details in the first photo. It's too dark, not focused properly and once again too dull. You can't feel the story behind it. And most importantly the doll's story. The second photo is lighter and brighter, you're able to see all the tiny details, texture, and the craftsmanship. I'm using my brand colours and only by looking at the shoes you can say this doll is bright and dreamy, maybe a little bit girly and romantic. The difference is staggering!
About the class
Candice Stringham is teaching how to take better photos without spending tons of money or burying yourself in the complicated books filled with tricky terminology. Using a daylight, simple setups, and your iPhone or DSLR camera you'll be able to create incredible pictures.
It's really interesting to watch her work through the photo shoot. Observing how she is moving items, changing props, backdrops and creating the final image. This practical information is golden! You could read tons of articles and still don't get the results you want, but watching photoshoot live gives you all the answers.
The class material covers everything you need to know about craft photography. My favourite lessons were:
How to Use Natural Light for Your Product Photography
Setting Up Your Photo: The Basic Rules
Shooting 3 Setups: Creating the Backstory with Images
Finding Your Brand's Aesthetic
Building a Styling Prop Collection
Shooting Products on a White Background
You even will learn what to do when you don't have a fancy kitchen to photograph your recipes or modern bathroom to photograph your handmade soaps! All these tips and tricks are so helpful for the Etsy sellers to get noticed or even to be picked out by the Etsy admins.
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PROS and CONS
- Easy to understand instructions
- Covers iPhone and DSLR photography
- Original ideas about setups, backdrops, and props
- Talks about jewellery, food, product, craft photography and specialities
- Entertaining and informative teacher
- Covers photo editing for beginners
- Solves your problems without investing tons of money, you won't need to buy lighting, expensive backdrops or anything like that
- Teaches how to show texture, colours, and size of your product
- Branding lessons
- Doesn't cover bigger items photography, like paintings or handmade furniture
- There could be more information about different styles and themes, for example, if you like vintage items, rustic setups or darker colours you'll get just a few examples about that.
Overall I think this is the best online course I ever took. Chatty and easy-going style of this class made learning process so much fun!