Craft Photography Book Review

If you buy something through links on Craft Professional, I may earn a referral fee. To learn more see my disclosure.

Photographing Arts, Crafts and Collectibles by Steve Meltzer is a fantastic resource on craft photography.

I have researched plenty of sources, trying to find good information on product photography for my own business, and this book, by far, is the most thorough, honest and helpful resource I've come across on the subject of traditional craft photography.

When I say that the book is honest, what I mean is that it clearly lays out exactly what you'll need to own in terms of photography equipment and what you will need to learn in order to take great photos of your crafts.

Some resources I've read on this subject imply that you can get great photos without really investing in the necessary equipment or without taking the time to learn how to use that equipment to its full effect.

I earn a commission for purchases made through links on this page.
To learn more, please see my disclosure.

Steve Meltzer's book is excellent if you want to learn how to take traditional, plain background, no prop product shots often used for craft show applications.

If you want to learn how take more stylized photos of your crafts - the kinds of photos you'd typically see on a blog or social media, I'd highly recommend Heidi Adnum's Crafter's Guide to Taking Great Photos.

You can read my review of Heidi Adnum's book here.

Or you can learn more about it on Amazon here.

It can be tempting to over-simplify things when explaining certain concepts (like how to photograph crafts) in order to avoid overwhelming people with new information. However, this is not a subject that can be explained effectively in a couple of short articles.

When I finished reading Photographing Arts, Crafts & Collectibles my first thought was, "Wow! Now I know what I don't know."

That is, now I understand what information (and equipment) I was lacking to get really great photographs of my products. And now I see where other sources I'd read on the topic really over-simplified things and wasted my time.

I think back to some juried shows that I wasn't accepted into years ago. Now that I have a better understanding of what it takes to get great photos, I'm certain that bad photos of my work were a huge factor in shows I wasn't accepted to.

If I only knew then what I know now.

If you want to take your own photos for craft show applications, social media, a blog, or online sales, and you  don't really know how to use a DSLR camera, you owe it to yourself and your business to get access to one and learn how to use it to show your work in its best light.

People will tell you that you can take great photos with your smart phone, but I always get better results when I break out my DSLR camera.

Also, be sure you're not short-changing your business by choosing to take your own photos for situations when photos from a pro photographer are really essential. There are some situations which really do require the kind of photos that only a true pro will capture.

What's in the Book?

Photographing Arts, Crafts and Collectibles will truly show you how to get the kind of photographs that are absolutely necessary to show your products in their best light.

What You'll Find in This Book:

Handmade white jug. Text - Better product photography for your craft show applications.
  • An overview of digital photography basics
  • How to choose the right camera for your needs
  • Understanding lighting, including the impact of the direction, quality and quantity of light you work with
  • Choosing backgrounds to best highlight your work and how to get special background effects such as the graduated backgrounds commonly used to photograph art and crafts
  • Tips on photographing two dimensional objects such as paintings, fabrics and photographs
  • Tips on photographing three dimensional objects such as various types of glass, sculpture, wood, jewelry, dolls and toys
  • Tips on using models for wearable items
  • How to enhance your digital images

If you've struggled in the past to take great photos of your crafts, when you read this book, you'll realize the mistakes you've made and how to fix them. You'll see that with the right equipment and techniques, you can really improve the quality of your own craft photography.

You'll also realize that if you don't currently have a DSLR camera and are working with a very basic camera, you really ought to invest in a DSLR camera to get the best shots of your work.

Trying to save money by not investing in a good camera when you're photographing your own work for selling online or for juried art show applications is really a false economy. You'll end up losing sales and possibly losing out on great shows if you can't create photos that show your work at its best.

When you finish reading Photographing Arts, Crafts & Collectibles you'll realize exactly what is required to take the kinds of photos that are needed to sell your crafts online or submit competitive applications to juried art and craft shows, and those great photos should translate into increased online sales and acceptance into better juried shows.

New! Comments

Have your say about what you just read! Leave me a comment in the box below.