Thursday, May 21, 2020

7 Tips for Etsy Photos


7 Tips for Etsy Photos



7 Tips for Etsy Photos

For Etsy entrepreneurs, great product photos are crucial. They say ‘don’t judge a book by its cover’, but when was the last time you bought or clicked on an online product with a bad photo?

You might offer the best quality items, but if you’re serious about growing your business, the power of good images shouldn’t be underestimated. The photo can make or break a sale.

Creating a perfect product image can seem a bit overwhelming for those just starting out. Here are 7 tips for great Etsy photos.

1. Consider the purpose of your photos


Tips for Etsy Photos
This high-quality photo by ZwoodZ attracts attention, gives a great sense of texture, color and size, and has a minimalist look.


You want your photos to attract attention, present a clear view of the product, and highlight your brand image. When planning your next shot, it’s useful to remember the purpose of the finished result.

The photo is the first impression your potential client gets. It has to attract enough attention for them to click and find out more. If the photo quality is low, chances are people will simply overlook your product.

The photo is also there to give the visitor a good sense of the product. Online, you can’t get the same perception as holding a physical item. Your picture thus needs to convey all the details. It has to clearly show the texture, color, size, for your potential clients to make an informed choice.

There are many styles of photos, and yours need to match your product, brand image and industry. Do you want a minimalist aesthetic? A vintage one? Bohemian? Spend some time looking for inspiration and figure out what vibe you want for your photos.


2. Lighting



Etsy Photos
The natural window lighting by JasmineSupply highlights the look of the product and creates a light, cozy vibe.

Lighting is one of the most important aspects of a good photo. It can completely change its look and enhance your product in different ways. While investing in professional lighting equipment can make a difference, you can also make the most out of your existing equipment using various techniques.

Make sure to look into the appropriate lighting conditions for your preferred photo aesthetic. For a clear, clean, and minimalist look, window light is a great tool.

If you’re taking outside shots, the ‘golden hour’ can create warmer, softer tones. Take your photos either right after sunrise or before sunset.

3. Close-ups and Details


for Etsy Photos
The close-up photo by YesterdaysGaze of the vintage alarm clock shows its details and scratches, which only add to the vintage look in a positive way.

Give a better sense of the texture and details of products by including close-up shots. The details of intricate items such as handmade jewellery can only be captured by a quality close-up.

Close-ups also help you be honest and transparent when it comes to scratches or irregularities of vintage or handmade items. Creating a realistic expectation is better than obscuring these details and risking to disappoint your client.


4. Backgrounds and props


watermark photos in Etsy
The props and background enhance in this photo by BuffaloGalOrganics, of a makeup product, highlighting its natural ingredients.

The type of your product and your brand image will be reflected in the style of your photo. For this, the product itself is not the only aspect that matters. Complete the picture by considering your background and props.

If you’re selling colourful ceramic mugs, you might want to create a cozy scene. For a natural makeup product, you can add some of the natural ingredients used right next to the item.

5. Scale


watermark photos in Etsy shops

Using the apple as a prop in HopscotchLondon's photo, together with the candle, not only shows scale but also highlights the product’s scent.

It’s important for potential clients to know the sizes of your products, and for certain objects, the dimensions aren’t always clear in photos.

For products such as art pieces, toys, bowls, candles etc., it’s important to offer a sense of scale, by placing your product next to objects with a standard dimension.

6. Editing & optimizing


After you take your photo, editing is a great way to take it to the next level. You can adjust the lighting, contrast, or remove any imperfections such as dirt. You can crop the image and slightly rotate it if necessary.

Be careful not to overdo it. Too much editing might give an unrealistic image of your product, which can bring you, unhappy clients.

A significant amount of traffic nowadays is mobile, which should not be overlooked. Make sure your photos are optimized for mobile and look good on a smaller screen.


7. Watermark


You have your perfect photo. Before you upload it, you might want to consider watermarking.

Watermarking is a great way of protecting your images and preventing others to use and claim them as their own. Additionally, it can also help you increase brand recognition. By adding a form of digital signature, your products and images become more identifiable with your brand.

For effective watermarking, get creative and match the watermark to your photo. Avoid watermarks that create a different focal point. The product, not the watermark, should grab the attention.

Water Marquee offers a high-quality, free watermarking service. The watermarks are fully customizable, providing multiple templates, as well as allowing you to choose your fonts, colors, add logos, and more.

Monday, May 18, 2020

Choosing the Right Font for Your Watermark


Choosing the Right Font for Your Watermark 



When creating a visible watermark, the font selection has a significant impact on both the watermark and any photos you overlay with it. Unless you're schooled in the art of typography, finding the perfect font can be a long trial-and-error process. Here are some tips to help you find the right font for your watermark--a font that will add to your watermark, brand and photos.

Choosing the Right Font for Your Watermark

Look for  Fonts That Show Up on Photographs


First and foremost, the font you choose should show up well on photographs. A visible watermark, after all, is intended to be seen. If your font's letters aren't readily visible, the effectiveness of the watermark will be reduced.

Many fonts show up well, but a few that have abnormally skinny letters don't. If you're planning on making the size of your watermark font 36-points or larger, you can probably use any but the skinniest of fonts. If you want to keep your font size smaller so that it doesn't cover the entire picture, a bold font that has thicker letters may work well.

Limit Your Choices to Fonts That Are Consistent with Your Branding


Second, a good font will be consistent with your current branding. Your watermark may be the first branding that prospective clients are exposed to, so it's important that your watermark conveys the same message as the rest of your marketing and branding efforts.

To find a font that is consistent with your branding message, first look at the fonts on your website, business card and letterhead. If one of these works well as a watermark font, your choice could be easy. If none of the fonts you're currently using work well as a watermark, you might want to change the fonts of your website, business card and letterhead to match the font that you choose for your watermark. Using the same font across all of these areas will ensure you have a consistent brand message, at least as far as your font selection goes.


Select a Font That Enhances Your Photos


Third, the ideal font will enhance your photos. It won't overpower your photos and detract from them. Conversely, it will add to them by reinforcing the feeling that your images evoke.

Exactly what font complements your photos will depend on what type of photography you specialize in. For instance, if you take landscape shots of rural barns, you'll want a different font than someone who specializes in grunge portraits of inner-city youth. A flowing font that resembles handwritten cursive may reinforce the old-fashioned, relaxed feelings that barns in the country bring to mind, while a font with block lettering might better suggest the graffiti that's found in many inner-city neighbourhoods.

If you don't specialize in one type of photography, pick a generic, clean font that can be used with most photos. If you're a general photographer, it makes sense to have a generic, professional watermark.

Consider Multiple Fonts for a Multi-Faceted Watermark


Ultimately, you don't have to limit yourself to just one font. Using multiple fonts can help you distinguish collections or styles from one another, while creating consistency within each collection and using fonts that enhance each collections' photos. Using several fonts within a single watermark can even be helpful, as it makes distinguishing the different components of your watermark easier and lets you combine styles into a single watermark.

If you're looking for the ideal font for your watermark, check out the selection on Water Marquee. The platform not only gives photographers a large number of fonts to choose from, but lets photographers use as many fonts as they would like.


Sunday, May 17, 2020

10 Unusual Types of Photography to Consider for Your Career

10 Unusual Types of Photography to Consider for Your Career



One of the most exciting things about photography is the vast potential to express your creativity and artistic strengths in a niche that best suits your talents. While you can experiment with several different styles, most professional photographers choose a particular niche and centre their business and customer base around it. Here are ten unusual types of photography to explore.

10 Unusual Types of Photography to Consider for Your Career

1. Food


Have you ever snapped a photo of a great meal and posted it on social media? Most of us have. In today’s digital generation, a picture is definitely worth a thousand words. As more restaurants and food producers turn to social media for their marketing efforts, food photographers will benefit with more work and greater creative license.

Lighting is one of the biggest skills to master when it comes to photographing food. Whether you are trying to capture the ambience of a local restaurant or the brightness of a basket of produce, experiment with filters, diffusers, and reflectors to see what paints your subject in the most delectable light.

2. Landscape


If you’ve been bitten by the travel bug, you’ve probably snapped your fair share of landscape photos. Photographers in this niche have great success selling their work to travel companies, tourism websites, and directly to consumers as framed art.

Landscape photography used to be limited to wide-angle, horizontal shots, but as technology has changed, so have the possibilities for artistic techniques. Some photographers use drones to capture a unique angle of a well-known landscape. Others experiment with vertical shots or full panoramic views. A good way to see what works best is to photograph the same landscape with several different lenses.

Unusual Types of Photography to Consider for Your Career

3. Sports


Sports photography is an exciting niche that requires the ability to shoot at high-speeds to capture actions as they happen. With so many photographers crowding professional sporting events, it might seem challenging to break into this niche. As a first step, contact your local little leagues, sports clubs, or high school athletic departments and offer to photograph games and events at no charge. As you get more experienced, you will quickly build your reference pool and portfolio.

4. Macro


Macro photography is one of the most specialized and unique niches. It is the art of making objects look much larger than they are in real life while capturing tiny details that would be missed by the naked eye. Macro photography can be done with a wide variety of equipment, from a DSLR camera with a macro lens to a simple smartphone camera and clip-on macro attachment. While it can be difficult to find a regular client base for this niche, many photographers sell their macro photographs as prints or framed art.


5. Wildlife


Wildlife photography is a unique niche that poses some interesting challenges. Depending on the subject, wildlife photographers often operate in dangerous conditions and remote locations. Because they need to capture crystal-clear photos without making the animal aware of their presence, these photographers need top-notch lenses and equipment and must also take precautions to stay safe from both the animals and the environment they shoot in. Despite these challenges, wildlife photography is a popular niche for adventurers and assignments pay well.

wildlife photography

6. Pets


For the less-adventurous animal lover, pet photography is an increasingly popular niche to explore. While the subjects can be unpredictable, they are also highly coachable with treats and praise. Just like wildlife photography, pets require lots of high-speed images to catch a few exceptional shots.

To get started in the pet photography market, take photos of your own pets and those of your friends and family in exchange for testimonials. Don’t limit yourself to just dogs and cats--showcase your talents by adding prints of some unusual pets to your portfolio, too.

7. Photojournalism


Some of society’s most compelling and memorable stories were captured by photojournalists. This specialized type of photography covers news stories and world events, including natural disasters and wars, as well as historic moments in time like rallies and celebrations.

Because these photos are in high demand with newspapers, magazines, and online publishers, photojournalists tend to be paid well and receive a great deal of notoriety for their work. Photojournalists are skilled at capturing the essence of a historic event and not necessarily a perfect shot.

8. Stock photos


There is a large market for stock photos, and it’s growing by the day. Organizations of all types and sizes use stock photography for marketing purposes and to accompany the content, both printed and online. While it may be difficult for some to sell their “art” to someone for commercial gain, stock photography is a lucrative niche for photographers who are just starting their professional careers. Unlike many other types of photography, stock photos can provide passive income to the photographer through repeat sales of the same photo to different buyers.

9. Weather


Weather photography is one of the most unusual types of photography that also delivers truly beautiful images. It features various types of wild weather, including snowstorms, thunderstorms, and even sandstorms. While there is certainly an element of danger that goes along with weather photography, the resulting images are often sold at a high price and can even win awards.

10. Architecture


Architecture photography is in high demand. It is not only used by design companies and architecture firms but also coveted by consumers for its clean, sleek styling and crisp images. It takes practice to capture the right angles and avoid sun glare and reflections, but this niche is the perfect fit for photographers who like to blur the lines between artistic and technical photos.

Whatever type of photographer you want to be, practice will make perfect. Try several different types of photography to get a feel for your strengths and investigate the market before you invest in special equipment. Above all, choose a niche that you enjoy, and your work will reflect your enthusiasm.

Thinking of putting your photos online? Make sure you protect your photos with a watermark.

Friday, May 8, 2020

How to Create Your First Photography Portfolio Online

How to Create Your First Photography Portfolio Online

How to Create Your First Photography Portfolio Online


In 2018, we saw more photographers than ever living their dream by showing off their photographs online with stock images and the like. However, if you want to get your work noticed, you really ought to start thinking about making a portfolio.

Looking at some of the bigger photographers out there - or even perhaps some of the smaller ones that you follow on Instagram - there’s one theme that runs through. That’s the fact they have clean, fancy, minimalistic websites that promote their best work, contact information, and occasionally a little bit of personal information.

You see, online photography portfolios are a combination of branding, self-marketing, and staying behind the camera. A photographer’s portfolio gets to, first and foremost, show off their work. It’s almost like the age-old adage of “a picture says a thousand words” is actually true in this case.

With all that said, it’s not actually all too hard to create a decent and cool-looking professional photography portfolio. You just need a little guidance, is all.

Hosting


Every cloud needs a silver lining and every website needs a hosting platform.

There are free platforms out there that are much more advanced than they were back in the day, and we’re not talking Flickr or Picasa either. There are also simple paid services on which you don’t even need to know a lick of HTML or CSS in order to make a great looking photography portfolio.

Hosting options for your new photography portfolio


If you’re genuinely looking to expand your photography into a career or a business, you should probably think about moving to a hosting platform.

Many hosting providers such as HostGator, 1&1, and BlueHost have WordPress integration options and Squarespace, as you’ll know if you listen to podcasts, is its own brand of magic.

That said, bigger, community-based websites like Flickr do have their SEO benefits, as well.

WordPress


Easily the most used hosting platform around these days, there’s a WordPress template and plugin for just about any kind of website you’re looking to create. You don’t need to learn a lick of code. Although if you’re looking for a straightforward photography portfolio, it might not be worth the $4-or-so to buy hosting and a domain name.

Then again, having a domain name is always going to be a benefit for you and your brand.

Price: Free, although you will have to shell out money for the hosting and/or domain name via a hosting provider.

Squarespace


Squarespace has a handle on the current streamlined, high-end aesthetic that most brands and individuals are going for these days. Their layouts are simple, elegant, and really easy to put together. Their themes are actively stunning and if you want a luxury theme that looks the part without needing to put a lot of work into it, then Squarespace might be worth considering.

Price: $12/m up to 20 pages, $18/m for unlimited pages, but this does come with a domain name and discounts if you’re paying annually.


Wix


Lesser-known than either WordPress or Squarespace, Wix is a platform that's easy to use and features that are exclusively designed with professional photographers in mind. Wix offers up an abundance of modern templates and an incredibly easy platform on which to do it. Recently, the company has also implemented the use of AI to help you build the website you want by simply answering a few questions.

It's a simple builder for busy people that still looks and works great. On top of this, you can also use some of the tools that also make it impossible for anyone to steal a photo.


How to Make Your Portfolio Stand Out


Once you have your website and layout sorted, it’s time to think about how you want your portfolio to look. Although it is ultimately your choice, two of the facts we really like to stand by are that you should watermark your work and you should also keep it as minimalistic as possible.

Most photographers choose only a few of their standout photographs to display on their portfolios; the shots that say, “This is my style, this is what I want to do, and if you want to see more, hire me.” However, even amateur photographers can think about doing this. Don’t make people search for your best shots - give it to them.

As for watermarking, it’s incredibly important to ensure that your photographs actually get attributed to you. With sites out there such as Pinterest and Tumblr, the idea of royalties goes out of the window. Having a watermark on your work is a clear, classy way to say, “I took this, isn’t it great?”

What you need on your photography portfolio


  • An ABOUT section: Give a quick summary on you, yourself, and what you’re about. 
  • Select PHOTOGRAPHS: Pick photographs that highlight your style of photography and your expertise.
  • CONTACT information: Contact information like an email address, socials, etc, are important for networking. How can somebody tell you they’d like to commission you for some work if you don’t have any contact info available?

Everything else - even blog sections - can be read as static.

How to know which photos to highlight


We get it. It’s as hard to be as proud of your photographs as it is to pick one when they all seem good. That said, the pictures you choose to show off as part of your portfolio should be the ones that show off your expertise, your skills, or even your vibe.

A good way of selecting shots is to look at it as though you’re putting together an exhibition. Technically, although it may be an online exhibition, you are. Your portfolio is your exhibition, and you want photographs that will always be relayed back to you.

A photography portfolio in a nutshell


The great thing about having an online portfolio is also that, if you’re proud of it, you never really have to visit it again yourself unless you want to. Like if you’re updating information or gearing up to switch an older shot for a newer one.

All that means is you have more time for doing what you love: actually taking the photographs.

Wednesday, May 6, 2020

Watermarking for Real Estate Agents

Watermarking for Real Estate Agents

The weather is heating up, and so is the real estate market. As real estate agents, there is nothing more thrilling than a surge in the for-sale market, timed so well with an abundance of customers who are looking to buy. It’s the real estate equivalent of the perfect storm.
You’ve worked so hard throughout your career as a real estate agent. You’ve done more than connect buyers with sellers and sellers with buyers. You’ve poured your heart and soul into helping families find the perfect home, helping retirees downsize, and helping couples get started on the right foot. Sometimes the transactions are fast and furious, sometimes the clients are with you so long they almost become part of the family!
If you’ve been in this industry for a while, you know how this goes – the market heats up, then suddenly (and not surprisingly) the number of agents out there trying to represent real estate buyers and sellers start to skyrocket. Competition gets fierce. Every opportunist out there thinks this is their chance to make it big in real estate! We veteran agents have weathered many storms and persevered. But that doesn’t mean we don’t need to be vigilant.

Watermarking for Real Estate Agents

Now, more than ever, we need to keep an eye out for those opportunists. In this business, your greatest asset is your sales record. Let me reiterate, your greatest asset is your own individual, unique sales record! You know your neighbourhoods, you know your demographics, and you know your trade. You also know that in today’s market, especially with younger customers, online communication is paramount. Today’s clients don’t want to take phone calls, they want to email or text. Today’s clients don’t want to wait for new market listings on Fridays, they want to peruse online listings in real-time. But even before that, they want to check out online profiles of real estate agents, before selecting someone to represent themselves in one of the biggest decisions they’ll make in their entire lives!
I know you’ll be sure to put your best foot forward online, but If there is one piece of advice I can give at this point, it’s this – do not, I repeat, DO NOT let anyone commandeer your sales track record. In this day and age, most agents will boast their biggest sales online with photos and bragging rights, hoping to build on that success by attracting new customers. But remember those opportunists we mentioned earlier? They don’t have the sales history that gives customers peace of mind that they’ve put their trust in the right hands.


Watermarking for Real Estate

So let me say this – post your successes online! A picture speaks a thousand words! Post photos on your website and on social media, celebrating your successes and showcasing the beautiful properties you have had the privilege to represent. Just make sure you protect those photos and all of your hard work from being stolen by someone else. It’s just too easy for those opportunists to grab photos online, claim to have made the sale, and win future business that they haven’t earned! To protect your photos online, you need to make them your own.

 There’s no better way to do that than to insert your own unique watermark into your online photos, to prevent anyone else from claiming ownership. And it doesn’t have to be a huge business expense – extremely inexpensive and easy-to-use online watermarking services allow you to place logos, text, your contact information, and/or all of the above onto your photos, to render them unusable for any unauthorized commercial purposes. Your sales are yours, and yours only! Advertise them proudly without fear!

Wednesday, April 29, 2020

3 Reasons Why You Should Watermark Photos of Your Children

3 Reasons Why You Should Watermark Photos of Your Children



Most parents take pride in showing off pictures of their children and the Internet one of the most popular ways they do this.  Millions of people can see the photos you post in a matter of seconds.  Birthday parties, first steps and first days of school are just a few of the milestones that flood Instagram, Facebook and many other social media sites every day.  Photographs are a great way of getting a glimpse into someone's life.  Usually, this is a positive thing, but it's important to be careful when posting photos online.  One of the ways to keep your family safe is to watermark your photos.  While most photographs online aren't watermarked, there are many advantages to watermarking photographs of your children.

3 Reasons Why You Should Watermark Photos of Your Children

Use Personal Watermarks to Protect Your Photos from Theft

One benefit of photo watermarking is that it helps deter potential thieves from stealing your pictures.  Photos without a watermark can easily be stolen by anyone that has an Internet connection.  If your name is watermarked across your photos, thieves will be reminded that there are consequences for stealing pictures.  It's not a sure-fire way to stop them, but if they do attempt to steal your photographs, it will be apparent to others that they are stolen.  Your pictures will still have the potential to be distributed, but your chosen watermark will give away that the pictures belong to you.

When it comes to photo theft online the reality is it happens all the time.  It can be scary to think there might be someone distributing your child's photographs as their own.  In some cases, it can even ruin your life.  If you're a parent, this probably sounds terrifying, but it's not hard to prevent it.  Watermarking your photographs will help protect you and your family and give you peace of mind in the virtual world.



Showcase Your Child's Personality with Custom Watermarks


Another benefit of watermarking your photographs is that you can let your creative side shine.  If your child has a favourite cartoon character, you can create a custom watermark of that character.  Turn your child's favourite animal into a watermark.  Have a school bus watermarked into a photograph of the first day of school.  Not only will your child love the personal touch, but people will get to know a little more about your family.

Explain Your Photos Through Descriptive Watermarks


You can turn just about anything into a custom watermark.  You could use a quote, date, description or just about anything else you can come up with.  Dates come in handy for photos of the first day of school, first steps and birthdays.  Descriptions can be used to explain what's going on in the picture.  A quote could be an inspiring thought or funny anecdote that you can look back on and smile.  If you have vacation photos, watermark the name of the city or attraction you went to into photos of your family's trip.  Let yourself get creative and let the world get to know your child's likes and dislikes.  The possibilities are endless.

When it comes to parenting, it's always good to be safe.  Don't risk the safety of your family.  Watermarking your photos can protect you as well as be fun.  Let your children be part of the process if they're old enough.  Have them help choose the designs you use to watermark your photos.  Turn it into a fun bonding experience that you can use to discuss Internet safety.  Most importantly, have fun creating memories with your children.


Sunday, April 19, 2020

Bird Photography

Bird Photography

Birds are great subjects for photographers because of their beauty and graceful movements.  Capturing photos of birds can be difficult, but it adds a tremendous visual impact on any picture.

Bird Photography
Photo by Vinoth Chandar.

It's not difficult to find your first subject since you can find birds pretty much anywhere on the planet.  You can start in your own backyard or a nearby park.  Bird feeders are a great way to attract them to where you want them to be.

Bird Photography -watermarquee
Photo by Acrylic Artist.


Birds are shy creatures, so be sure to bring along at least a 200mm lens and a tripod. If you want to catch them in flight, you'll need a camera with a FPS (Frames Per Second) and high ISO results.  You probably won't need, or even be able to use a flash.  You will definitely need patience.  Remember, you're looking to capture the bird in a natural pose, against a good backdrop, with good lighting. Wild creatures like birds aren't going to go out of their way to help you with any of that.

Bird Photography - watermark for free
Photo by Jimmy Davao

You'll have to remain still or even find a good hiding place, in order to not scare your feathered subjects away.  The best times of day for shooting birds are morning and evening when the light is the best and birds are at their most active.

watermark for free -Bird Photography
Photo by Nandadevieast

Finally, remember not to stress your subjects. Stay away from their nests and never do anything to harm the birds.