One of the more popular lines of questioning we get around here is regarding how to photograph art.
“I dunno Owen, why do I need to know how to photograph my art?”
Maybe you don’t need to know how to photograph art specifically, but you DO NEED photos of your art!
Artists need photographs of their art for several reasons:
- to publish their work on various media from Ltd Edition prints, to canvas transfers, to gift cards, etc.
- to have compelling images for their websites
- for entries in juried shows
- for use in printed marketing materials such as brochures, flyers, catalogs, invitations, business cards, and so on.
It’s folly to try and use substandard photographs “just to give an idea of the work”…the idea will inevitably be “this art isn’t very good” and/or “this artist is hardly a professional!”
Neither of those is the response we’re after.
High quality and accurate photos are a MUST!
But if you’ve ever tried to take your own photographs, you also know that there’s an awful lot of technical stuff that goes into taking a proper photo…
In this video I interview Andy Derrick, who is the Head of Artist Community at ArtSquare.
We talk about:
- how to set things up
- the gear needed
- how to set up your space
- managing your lighting needs
- the pitfalls of taking digital photographs of your art
- finding professional help
NOTE: Artsquare no longer connects photographers and artists – but the interview has been helpful to so many artists that we decided to keep it available.
The Camera/Video Gear
This is what I use to take the photos of my art, and for the video I shoot..
Cell Phone Tripod Adapter and Bluetooth Remote!
This Jim-dandy gizmo attaches your phone to a tripod, and comes with a remote Bluetooth clicker, so you can take pics of yourself or without joggling the camera or casting a shadow with your hand as you reach in! And cheap too!!
Cell Phone Tripod Adapter – Bluetooth Remote Control – Travel Bag – iPhone Tripod Mount SE 6S 6 Plus 5S 5C 5 4s 4, Galaxy S7 S6 S5 S4 S3 S2 more Cell Phone Tripod Mount Clip Holder – DaVoice (Black)
Camera/Mic Stand Adapter
Mic stands are FAR more adaptable than are traditional tripods. I wouldn’t mount a heavy camera on them, but an iPhone is perfect! To use with a phone, you need the above attachment!
*NOTE – this is a slightly different design than the one I got, but it’s also half the price! @%$#@*&!
On Stage CM01 Video Camera/Digital Recorder Adapter
I use these everywhere: taking pics of products, filming the FOTW content, and even to light my paper as I draw!
great article , Living in the boonies here in a small town in newfoundland I can’t even buy art supplies lone walking down the street to get my Art photographed , so over the years i have been studying photography and been doing my own shooting, I don’t have enough room for a 10 x 10 area that I can call my own for a lightroom so I love to take my work outside on a overcast day, i have the proper setup using my fence . Its works lol , Once again been enjoying your lessons and articles ..
Your posting came at a perfect time for me, as I was literally taking photos of my artwork with my digital camera. I am going to contact artsquare.com to help me out! Can’t wait!
It’s a pretty terrific and much needed idea – I can’t wait until things are going up here!
Thanks for this info! I will be using the code to get some work done from ArtSquare soon!
Great work Owen and Andy! You guys addressed a lot of the challenges with DIY. We need more conversations like this 🙂
Thanks Thomas! There’s more good stuff in the pipeline!
Thanks Owen & Andy, great tips and interview. I would love a service like ArtSquare in Australia. I’ve taught myself over many years to photograph my own work, with varying success as I work in a several media. I’ve used professional photographers at crucial times, also with varying results. Consistency of good photographs is my ongoing challenge.
Thanks Marta! They’re working on it! 🙂
Thanks for the interview, Owen.
Is this service available in Canada?
Not yet, unfortunately – but they’re working on it!
Hey Owen! So far I have really enjoyed everything. I am learning so much!
I am currently looking for a local photographer to digitize my art. I went to artsquare.com and I cannot find anything as described in the interview. I do admit that I am by no means a web master of any kind but I looked high and low and for the life of me I cannot find it. Can you or Andy provide a link here to the part of the site you guys were talking about. I’m very excited to create a long term relationship with my local art photographer. Thanks!
Okay, I found it. Of course as soon as write the above comment I find it. HA!
Now I have a different problem, when I click on the “Anywhere Else” icon and it directs me to a Typeform ad. I’m not thinking this is the right place. What am I doing wrong here, sorry.
Hiya Ray! Yes, Artsquare has made a shift in their business model, but lots of artists have gotten good value from the interview, so we’ve decided to leave it up…
The artsquare site is not responding to my “sign up” clicks. Is the site defunct?
Hey Susan! Yes, as it says under the video, they’ve changed their business model, but the video was valuable enough on its own that we should leave it up! 🙂