Doing Fashion Photography for a Website
If you are getting into selling fashion items online, you are going to need a website to do it. This might be your own website domain, or you might setup on Amazon, or both. Either way, there are many considerations for getting fashion shots for a website.
The importance of having high quality photos cannot be understated. The difference in quality of your photos compared with a competitor’s photos might be the sole difference between who makes the sale. But how important are product photos to online shoppers? Well, of all the content that goes into a product listing 83 percent of online shoppers rank the photography as number one in importance.
So, the photos you use online are highly important. Thus, it is important to use the photos how you want them in your marketing and sales rather than being forced to use them a certain way. What does this mean?
When designing a website, often business owners will use a web service that provides website themes. These themes are essentially pre-designed website templates. And while there are often a lot of options, depending on the platform you opt for, some of them can be limiting in how you can use a photo. So, it is important to use a website design that conforms to how you want to post photos rather than forcing you to confirm to their design.
Other factors to consider include page speed. Overloading a web page with images can make it load slowly. It’s estimated that more than half of users will leave a website if it takes more than three seconds to load.
If you are going to use the photos on a third-party ecommerce platform, such as to sell on Amazon, there are specific requirements that must be met there. So, be sure to cover all your bases before starting work on images.
Preparing for the Fashion Photo Shoot
Once you have defined the garments, or clothing, you are planning to shoot you will want to prepare them. This includes making sure they are wrinkle free, tear free, stain free, and so on. This will not only make clothing look it is best it will save on unnecessary post-production work that can increase costs.
For these reasons alone it is a good idea to use a fashion stylist. In addition to making sure garments look their best, they often have tricks up their sleeves to pull out certain elements that help elevate branding. At the very least, if a fashion stylist is not available, consider having a dedicated person just for preparing the next clothing item that is up in the lineup to photograph.
Flat Lay, Mannequin or Models
Another decision to make before the photographing starts is how you want the items photographed. Generally, there are three options to consider. They include flat lay style, mannequin style, and on a real model.
Often the decision to do flat lay is arrived upon as a cost-savings measure. This is when an item is loosely laid flat on a specific background color, usually white. It typically requires minimal styling. So, it is usually the fastest to setup.
Photographing items on a mannequin often involves what is known as ghost-mannequin photography. The specific detail here is to place a clothing item on a mannequin, let us say a shirt. But the “ghost” part allows a shopper to see the label of the shirt through the “ghost” mannequin. Often this is selected because it keeps total focus on the item rather than a model.
Model photography is often avoided because it is thought to be more costly. It can be but, it can also save on costs. There is sometimes more effort to placing a shirt on a ghost mannequin than having a model quickly throw it on. So, when photographing many items, model photography has the possibility to save more time, particularly if you’re rotating models. Model photography is also commonly thought of as having the most appeal in terms of elevating a brand’s marketing.
If you have done your styling correctly, post-production can be minimized. One annoying post-production item after another can easily pop up if not. For example, you might later uncover all your shirts look more wrinkled now in the photos than when you were shooting them. It might require a total re-shoot. So, the first step to good post-production is to get as much correct in-camera.
As mentioned, there will likely be various specifications to meet for whatever website you plan to use the fashion photography on. You might also need to apply color correction, so the finished photos closely match the real-life colors. Also, often there are other branding elements that are desired. This might include adding a drop shadow to items, ensuring a specific color background, providing large files for zoom features, and so on.
Finding a good fashion photographer is important, particularly in a city like Los Angeles. It is important because there is strong proof the success of your brand is linked to the quality of the photography you use. When you can combine a good product, a good website design, and good fashion photography supported by strong marketing, you have at least ensured yourself that proper effort has been placed to maximize success.