Ever hear “A picture is worth a thousand words”? Well, when it comes to an online store it is more crucial than ever!
Felicia and I have always dreamed of having professional photos taken for our store but by the time all our expenses are over and paid for, it is just not something that fits into our budget….BUT we never let that stop us from taking the best photos we possibly can. Here are some of the tips and tricks for low budget product photos.
Don’t Be Afraid of Mockup Generators
We recently got into making some cool graphic art that is printed on t-shirts and sweaters but we knew we weren’t going to be able to purchase a sample of everything that we created. We used the mockup generator provided by the company creating our shirts and the end effect was great. A lot of brands post photos of products without using models, so don’t be afraid of a good mockup generator.
Some mockup generators actually apply the designs to shirts and sweaters that are on a person so it’ll look like you actually have a model wearing your clothes. MockupWorld is a website that offers some free mockup options of everything from shirts to motorcycle helmets. Another option for those who have a bit more time and are a bit more graphically advanced, you can use photoshop to create your mockups. Mixing stock photos and your own designs can help you create some pretty realistic photos for your site. Search around and find the style that works best for you.
Find a Friend to Model
We really wanted to use models for some of our pieces last season but because we were limited we asked some of our friends to do us a solid. Getting friends and family to model your product can really save some money. We saved even more by doing hair and makeup ourselves or asking our “model” to come prepared to go. If you wanna sweeten the deal for your friend, you can offer them free products or a gift card to your store (a venti latte never hurt a friendship either!) Modelling is entering the realm of the unconventional, with the addition of plus size models, models with disabilities and many, many others; The modelling world is starting to acknowledge that their standard isn’t actually standard. Being real is okay so find your selfie-obsessed bestie or your super photogenic (kind of jealous of her/him) friend and get going.
Don’t be afraid to be your own model. Many small business owners find it easy (and cost effective) to do it themselves. You are the one that created the products so who better to show off the inspiration and the style than the one who made it happen. Get a loved one, or really awesome friend to snap some shots of you. Or, if you’re packing some great photography equipment, set up a tripod with your camera and shoot the photos remotely. I’ve set my camera up to my laptop and had complete control over my shots and could even see what the outcome was so I could better adjust if necessary.
Okay so I’m sure you are freaking out wondering what I mean but bare with me. Youtube is a fantastic space to learn about taking and editing photos. I follow an LA based photographer named Jessica Kobeissi and she has really helped up my photography game. I’m not by any means a professional but I have a much better understanding of cameras and editing software like Photoshop and Lightroom. Don’t be afraid to learn for yourself. You can save a ton of money if you become your own photographer and photo editor. Learning these skill means you get to create the exact look you want for your photos and it means you will be able to give your online store that cohesive brand image that you’ve imagined in your head.
You’ve already taken the big step in deciding to own your own online store. You’ve got this! Product photos don’t need to break the bank and they definitely don’t need to take a million years to plan out. Having tight purse strings are no longer an excuse 🙂
I hope these tips have helped you out and if you have any other tips feel free to share them below (I love learning new secrets too)!