Friday, March 7, 2008

I knew I should've taken Photography in school...

When it comes to photography I am a certifiable amateur. I've always loved to take pictures, but only for my own enjoyment. It never ocurred to me that I would ever need it for anything other than that.

Then, I started making soaps, which has nothing to do with photography.

Then, I decided that this soap thing was good and I wanted to sell them, so I sold them locally.

Then, I thought it would be a good idea to sell them online. Suddenly, photography became VERY important, but I didn't realize just how important until I started to take pictures with my new digital camera. I'd never used a digital camera before, but I figured that wasn't a problem. A picture is a picture, right?

I was sooo wrong!

The pictures above are examples of really lousy photographs I've taken of some of my soaps and gift baskets when I first started using my digital camera. I thought the pictures were okay.....not great, but OK.

Then, I found and thought it was a great place to put my soaps online. I opened my shop, took my pictures, wrote some descriptions and set some prices. Cool! I was ready for buyers to come flocking to my store site and start buying.

It didn't happen.

Scratching my head, I took another look at my shop, then another and another. I started comparing my shop with others on etsy and began to recognize that my photos were sadly lacking compared to most. So, I started trying to take more pictures. Slowly, I got a bit better at it, but still they didin't look near as good as many on etsy. What are these other guys doing that I'm not doing. I started to take a look at the forums after being on etsy for about 6 months and found them to be extremely helpful in learning what others are doing to improve their shops. I also started looking at some other things that etsy has posted and found that they had so much more than just a place where you can open your shop. There were tutorials on how to make your shop even better.

So, I'm not the brightest star in the sky. Despite the fact that I had been on etsy since July of 07, it took me until December of 07 to discover what etsy is all about.

Since December, I've slowly been improving the looks of my shop. I've recently ordered a new banner and avatar from an etsy seller. It is still in the making, but I'm excited about it. I've slowly improved my photos but they still have a long way to go. It all takes time, but the best part about the whole process is that I'm learning about them rather than stubbornly sticking to my guns, hoping that customers will just come flocking to my store and buying all my stuff whether I take pretty pictures or not.

I'm learning how to be a marketer, a photographer, advertiser....when all I wanted to be was a soaper and crafter. I'm finding that if I want to sell my craft, I need to learn so much more.

I had deleted most of my terrible photographs before I did this blog, so the ones above are actually ones I dug out of the corners of my computer that escaped death along with the rest.

I'm hoping to show you some of my improvements in my photography soon. My etsy site still is in need of better photographs, I know that. Please visit my shop site and give me some input on my so so photograpy. Trust me, the current photos are a vast improvement from what I had on there last summer.


Huage said...

I must say that your shots are well-taken. :-)

You should not be calling yourself an amateur anymore. The quality of your photographs have been beyond that of an amateur.

Excellent. Keep up the good work.


Joey & Aleethea said...

I'm happy I found your blog because your soaps are beautiful, as are your photos!