Product photos are a way to help your customers visualize the products they are ordering for their restaurant or foodservice operation. Compelling photographs not only help your market look more professional, but they will help you sell more of your product. Don’t risk losing a sale because a sub-par picture doesn’t help your product, and your market as a whole, look its best.
You may be thinking, “Do I need to hire a professional photographer?” Our answer is no: with a little effort and minimal cost, you can easily do a great job yourself. Here are some simple tricks to take your photos from boring to beautiful.
Get in close.
You want your product to be the center of attention. Don’t be afraid to get really close and fill up the frame of your viewfinder with the product. You want your photo to stand out and pop off the page.
Make sure to eliminate anything in the background that does not relate to the product. A cost-effective way to do this is to purchase a tri-fold poster presentation board from an office supply store. It will only cost you a few bucks and will give you a professional-looking, plain white background that you can reuse again and again.
Avoid harsh lighting, inside or out.
Show your products in the best light. Natural lighting from a window is often the best light to use when photographing inside. It is more diffuse and creates fewer harsh shadows than overhead lighting or your camera’s flash. If the light coming in your window is too bright, a budget-friendly solution is to tape sheets of tracing paper over the portion of the window where the light is shining directly on your product. You may need to use several layers if the light is really bright. This works especially well for photographing baked goods or packaged products.
If you don’t have enough natural light and need to use your camera’s flash, you can diffuse the flash by taping a few pieces of tracing paper over it. Experiment with how many layers of paper you need to create the right level of light. This will help eliminate the harsh shadows and washed out areas created by the direct flash’s bright light.
If you’re a farmer, it might be most efficient to take pictures of your produce while harvesting or while the product is displayed at the farmers market. In that case, you’ll want to avoid direct sunlight, and if possible photograph as close to dawn or dusk as possible when the light is most diffuse. If you do need to photograph midday, try to find a slightly shaded spot. You don’t want to be in full shade though, or your photographs can end up too dark.
Edit or resize if you need to.
After you’ve taken your shots, you might want to crop or resize them to make sure you’re showing exactly what you want to. If you need to resize your photos, but don’t have photo-editing software, we recommend using Picmonkey. The program is easy to use and, best of all, it’s free.
Taking a little time to follow these simple steps will help you produce better images with minimal effort and cost. The result will be stellar photos that help showcase your product, making them really stand out. That means more products in the cart and more sales for you!