HOW TO PHOTOGRAPH YOUR ARTWORK
Artfinder sells art that changes lives! Art that awakens our imagination, transforms our homes, and expresses who we really are. We are building a world where artists can make a living doing what they love. Where anyone can easily find and buy original art, no matter their taste or budget. Art is for all at the end of the day! We were delighted to speak to the folks at Artfinder for a series of tips and techniques on how best to sell your work online. One of which is of course how to photograph your work.
Taking high-quality photographs of your artworks is a hugely important part of successfully selling your pieces online. Without a physical showroom to display your artwork, it is vital that you give your customers the best insight possible through the images you upload.
Whether or not you have photography experience, there are a few simple things you can do to ensure your images are as faithful as possible to live. Here are some basic tips to help you take photographs of your artworks that will do them justice.
Find the best setting
Natural lighting is best – a room with large windows or a spot outside on a slightly overcast day will work well. If you cannot find a space with enough natural light, it is best to use two artificial lamps of the same intensity. These lights should be positioned behind the spot from which you are taking your photographs. To achieve even coverage, each should ideally face the centre of the painting at a 45 degree angle.
Try to find a clean, clear wall or surface against which to hang or lean your artwork to avoid backdrop distractions taking the focus away from your piece.
Camera settings need to be adjusted for the best results.
Set the ISO on your camera low, at between 100-200 depending on the camera you are using. The ISO setting determines how sensitive your camera will be to light- if it is set too high, your images will come out grainy.
The image above, of Sandy Dooley’s painting ‘Springer Green’, has been taken with a camera set to a high ISO- the colours appear grainy and distorted. A much more accurate representation is given by the photograph below, which was taken with an ISO setting of 100.
Be sure to turn off your flash before you start shooting – leaving it on could lead to misleading and washed-out colouring on your images. The below image has been taken with flash in a space with insufficient lighting. This has led to blurring and distortion in the centre, coupled with darkness around the edges of the canvas.
Check for any other settings that may distort from a clear and natural representation of your artwork. If your camera has a date stamp functionality, make sure that it is turned off!
Position your camera to avoid movement.
The best way to lessen the chance of your camera moving while you are taking photographs is to use a tripod. If your artwork is tilted, make sure that you angle the tripod so that your camera lens is parallel with the face of your artwork. If you don’t have access to a tripod, you can rest your camera on a flat surface to keep it straight and still.
Movement when you take your photographs will lead to blurry images which will not allow your customers to appreciate the finer details of your work.