Great product photos can boost sales for your Etsy business, but you don’t need to hire a professional photographer (although you can). Composing your own photos for Etsy calls for a bit of technical know-how and some artistic flair (which, of course, you already have!). As you shoot your pieces, keep these compositional points in mind:

  • Angle the camera. Angling, or tilting, the camera puts the subject slightly off-center and creates movement and flow. The result is a more dynamic, intriguing image.

  • Shoot tight. Filling the frame with your subject not only adds visual impact but also enables potential buyers to see how well made your piece is.

  • Blur the background. By using a shallow depth of field (read: a low f-stop setting on your camera), you can blur the background, dramatically highlighting your piece. When the background is blurred, you can shoot in almost any setting; just make sure that the background colors don’t clash with your subject.

  • Note that less is more. Don’t crowd the scene with extraneous objects. Otherwise, potential buyers may not understand exactly which item in your photo is for sale.

  • Frame your subject. One way to draw the viewer’s eye to your piece is to frame it — that is, place some darker element in the perimeter. This technique helps keep the viewer’s eye from straying from your item.

  • Group pieces together. Especially if you make itsy-bitsy goodies, you can try grouping them to catch a buyer’s eye. Not only does this make for a more eye-catching photograph, but it also shows potential buyers how pieces in your collection work together.

  • Use the rule of thirds. Divide the scene you’re photographing into nine equal parts by using two horizontal lines and two vertical lines (like a tic-tac-toe grid); place key elements at one of the four points where the vertical and horizontal lines intersect. In addition to conveying a sense of tension and energy, this helps pique the viewer’s interest.