Almost every website has some photos on it, and a photo can do more to improve your site than the fanciest design. But the inverse is also true. If you have a bad photo or image on your site, especially if it’s the logo or a product photo, you can damage your site’s credibility and lose customers and sales. There are some tips should help you make sure that your photos work well for your website.
Many of our clients have ecommerce; therefore, if you’re photographing products for your website, as I say to them, you want to make sure that they stand out. Many people rely on photos to make their purchasing decisions, so having a good product photo could make the sale.
Light and background are essential. Always photograph products on a white background. This makes the product stand out, and makes shadows more effective. If you want to use a colored background, make sure that it’s a solid color. If what you are taking pictures of great outdoors, remember that light is essential.
Here, Seth Dunlap ( Vimeo.com/sethdunlap ) , a Nashville based videographer followed Death to Stock Photographer Patrick Chin (instagram.com/iampatrickchin) and Calen & Kristy Rhome (whiteinrevery.com/) as they captured our imagination with a series of photos and drone video on the open road 4 hours West of Denver. This is a spectacular view of what we mean about good pictures.
Often what makes a professional photograph stand out from a novice’s is the lighting. Be aware of where the sun is if you’re shooting outdoors. You don’t want to take photos with your subjects directly facing the sun
Fill flashes are a really useful tool. With a fill flash, you can photograph subjects with the light source behind them and their faces won’t be in shadow. And on days when the sunlight is filtered by clouds, a fill flash can highlight things that the more muted sunlight would miss.
Product shots should have good strong lighting. If you want the effect of shadows in your image, using a strong light source on your subject will help develop them. It is always possible to add them in later with Photoshop, but that can look unnatural unless you’re very careful. Besides, the less post-processing that you have to do the better—if only because it’s less work.
If your project requires recognizable faces, should always have a model release. Editorial use of a person’s photo is usually okay, but getting a model release protects you from legal liabilities.
Finally, in most countries it is okay to take photos of architecture without permission if you are on publicly accessible land when you take the shot. Recently in Europe there was a big issue about this, since they tried to charge for taking public buildings pictures, ridiculous but true. But be sure you know your rights and the rights of the building owners before you publish the photograph if this a private place. It takes nothing to knock the door and tell the owner that their place is beautiful and you want to take a picture. Most of the time, they even will invite you for tea if you are lucky.
Víctor Hernández González