Lessons of a Creative #1 – Photos & Context


Blurred objects in the background help give you an idea of the scale of the card

Reality hit when I set up my very first shop. I HAVE SO MUCH TO LEARN as a creative. Now, trust me when I say this, I’m not seeking out pity purchases! But I will be honest about the vulnerability and discouragement that set in when the minutes, hours and days started ticking by without a single sale on my Etsy shop. That’s right, I have NO IDEA how to market myself as an artist. OK, well maybe I have a little bit of an idea. But I’m realizing that it’s WAY more hard work, sweat and tears than I initially anticipated.

So here it is, the answer to my creative business woes, an outlet for me to share what I’m learning along the way with YOU! I want to invite you in to the creative process if you’re interested in joining me. It’s my intention to post a new “Lesson of a Creative” post each week. Perhaps you’ll learn something that will be helpful to you in your journey. I hope so!




If you’re trying to convert your art and creativity into something that someone might potentially buy, I’ve heard that quality photography can’t be stressed enough. And what is it that makes a great shot when it comes to featuring your product? Well, context is huge. How big is your product? How might it be used? Where might it be displayed? Surrounding your piece with other objects to create depth, indicating color, texture and size is so helpful. It helps your audience visualize exactly what you’re offering them.


The natural light source is shining directly on the object of focus, the card

Here are just a few helpful hints when setting up your photo:

  1. Make sure you have plenty of good, natural light coming in
  2. Utilize your light source to focus on the product and make it pop against the background
  3. Use a large aperture and fast shutter speed to blur the background (f/4 or f/5)
  4. It’s important to have good exposure (make sure your images aren’t too dark or washed out)
  5. Add objects to the surrounding that will give your audience an idea of scale
  6. Show your product in use (frame photos, place cards with other stationary on a desk, etc.)
  7. Incorporate colors in your background that will enhance your product, not distract from it

Adding a frame around the art gives you an idea of how it could look on YOUR wall


Add a few touches of color to the decor, which helps compliment the artwork

And, remember, it’s all about making your creation look as YUMMY as possible! So whatever extra “flare” you want to add that’s uniquely you…GO FOR IT 🙂



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