Hello! Have you noticed my profile image on the right side of my blog? I super super love it. And the reason being, everything was done by me 🙂 I have this overwhelming sense of achievement from putting together a home photo studio with a simple photo backdrop at home, setting up my camera, touching up the image by creating a “chicken scratch lines” border, and making minor colour adjustments to the image through.
The thing about having an online shop is that you really need to have decent quality photos. On days when I’m working from home, I work on improving my photography skills bit by bit. I use Z as a target, I try to play around with home objects to see what works, and what doesn’t. On lucky days, I get my break through, while some days, I’m left high and dry.
My photography and photoshop skills are self taught, and definitely not perfect, but I try to tinker around with things. I think my end product looks pretty decent!
Today, I don’t have my usual subject (Z), so I put myself in front of the camera, and used this opportunity to test out the remote. I’m actually holding onto my phone (the remote) as I take these image.
So, what can you do if like me you have no idea what all the fancy studio lighting equipments are for, don’t want to spend money on renting a photo studio (because you are completely clueless about studio lighting), don’t have an extra pair of hands, on a tight budget, and basically have the odds stacked up against you? Read on…
1. Create A Photography Backdrop With Your White Wall And Decorate It
Identify a white clean wall that is near the window, and make it a point to keep it poster and photo free. This wall will be your working wall from now on, and it will be a chameleon – changes according to your photo shoot theme.
2. Use Natural Lighting
Lighting for photography is very important. Every house is different. You need to observe how natural light comes in, or if it doesn’t shine into the house what are the best timings through the day to take a photo. My wall works best from morning to afternoon. After which, I get dark images. I also noticed if I closed the windows, my image has a different colour tint. If it is a cloudy and rainy day, I can forget about taking an images. I will then proceed with table images (which is another story). The best bet is to trial and error.
The images are taken in the evening, so you can see half of my face is brighter than the other side. I get full on light on my face in the afternoons.
3. Setup Camera On A Tripod
Don’t just setup. Look through the camera view finder (although you will see all white initially). I used the pink stars as markers to frame my shot. I put two stars on different ends, walked back to the view finder to check if it is ok, and filled in my frame.
Connect your camera to a remote. I’m using a Nikon, which allows me to convert my phone to a remote via wireless. Once I connect my phone to the camera, I did some test shots, adjusted my camera manually until I had the right bright and clean colour.
This took me awhile, but it is worth the time.
5. EDIT THE COLOURS OF YOUR IMAGE
I am using PS. Previously, when I had no idea how to use PS, I used the basic editor in my Macbook Photo gallery. It works as well. I mainly use exposure, light, and contrast.
Now, it is time for you to try it out.
These tips will come in handy if you are celebrating a birthday, wish to update your child’s portrait photo, have a passport photo taken, or put up more family photos (like me!). My quest to take better pictures was inspired by my son.
*Pink glitter stars from Sunday Morning Celebrations. To purchase pink glitter stars as a decoration for a photo backdrop or as a bunting, hop over here!)