As a local florist, you probably want to showcase some of your own special, creative designs on your website. Great! Custom products are a fantastic way to show off your shop’s own unique style, and to show that you’re a real, local florist, too.
This is the first in a series of posts about floral product photography. Today we're starting with the basics of lighting, framing, and background. All you need to create fantastic, professional-looking photographs is your smartphone or a basic point-and-shoot camera and our how-to guide!
When representing your work online, the quality of the image you take is just as important as the arrangement itself. Even the most stunning arrangement won’t sell if your shopper can’t clearly see how it looks - and, in a worst-case scenario, very messy-looking photography could even make a shopper leave your site entirely.
Photography might seem like a big challenge, but in the long run, it will be worth it to invest a little extra time in making your products really stand out and look completely professional. We’ve compiled some basic techniques and tips to make it easier for you to get started, and see great results.
First: What NOT to Do
Clutter, papers, and stems - oh my!
During busy moments, it may seem easy to simply take a snap of your arrangement where it stands - for example, at your workstation. However, these photos are rarely appealing and sometimes not even usable. With clutter, stems, and papers in the background of your image, it’s simply not going to convince your shoppers to make a purchase!
How can we make this better, without taking up too much of your valuable time?
Step One: Clear Out Your Background
- Shoot your product on a neutral background so the arrangement stands out.
- If you want a clean, crisp look, use a white background. You can easily achieve this look by purchasing a folding presentation board and placing it behind the arrangement you’re photographing, or, hang an ironed white sheet on the wall.
For a more atmospheric look, you can place the arrangement in a clean, attractive location in your store - on a rustic-style table top, for example, in front of a clutter-free wall.
Two beautiful examples of atmospheric background from UFN Partner Flowers of Charlotte.
The most important thing is that the background of your image be free of clutter. You want your shopper to focus on the arrangement, not on the background!
Step Two: Add Some Lighting
Use bright, even lighting to keep the colors of the arrangement looking natural, or photograph the arrangement outdoors
Need a little more light? A few inexpensive clamp lights attached to the edge of your table can go a long way!
Here’s a simple photography set-up using a folding presentation board and two inexpensive clamp lights. We picked these items up locally for under $30, but it makes a huge difference in your results!
You may be tempted to use your smartphone’s editing tools to increase the brightness or saturation of the image - go ahead, but be careful! Too many adjustments can quickly turn your photograph into an unnatural mess!
Step Three: Framing Front and Center
- Make sure your arrangement is centered in the frame.
- If you’re using your smartphone to take photographs, you can most likely use the built-in editing tools to crop the image and remove extra empty space.
- Photograph the arrangement from straight ahead or a slight downward angle so the shopper can get an accurate sense of its size.
Step Four: Ta Da! Admire Your Amazing Results!
Here’s our final result! Using a white background and two simple clamp lights with “Daylight” toned bulbs, we have a wonderfully appealing and shopper-friendly result. With just a few minutes of time and a few dollars spent, we’ve made a huge difference in our presentation and sales!
Give it a try, and watch your custom product sales numbers skyrocket!
Until next time,
UFN Content Manager