website design

Cybil

Grumbler in Training
Joined
Jun 5, 2004
Posts
7
From
San Francisco
Hello. I've just opened a home-based framing business and will be utilizing a website to promote the business. The market that I'm targeting is gallery and corporate business. With the website, I'd like to provide a digital gallery with examples of the different types of framing and quality of work that customers can expect. One big hurdle is how to photograph these pieces, so that they show up clearly. Does anyone have suggestions on backgrouds, cameras and lighting that will help. We currently use an Olyimpus digital camera, though I'm not sure it will create the quality of images needed for a professional look. Any links to extra-ordinary sites would help. Thanks, Cybil
 

Mike Labbe

Administrator
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Joined
Jun 25, 2002
Posts
18,249
From
Lincoln, RI
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Get The Picture
First of all, welcome to the grumble family! I think you'll find this to be a tremendous resource.

We've taken pictures of many unique pieces to include in newsletters, etc. (with customer permission) One trick is to take the picture before you put the glass in. This will avoid glare and/or getting your reflection in the picture.

If it has glass, we sometimes take the picture in the dark and let the flash handle it. We use black foam-core around the piece to absorb any glare, in every case.

Here's one done right on the design counter, with black foam-core underneath and behind. Lighting was a combination of color corrected flourescent track, incandescent flood, and halogen track.

Photos were taken with Canon A80 digital camera and shrunk down in resolution later to a web friendly size. The seams where the foam-core met were removed with Photoshop.

It can get tricky when taking pictures of pieces that have glass.

Mike

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Ron Eggers

SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God
Joined
Jul 6, 2001
Posts
16,932
From
Wisconsin
Sometimes the key to getting professional-looking photographs is to have a professional take them.

Those Grumblers who have a business website will have a special icon at the top of each post that you can click on to visit the site. On this forum, it looks like this:
homepage.gif
but it be will different on the various Grumble forums, because our administrator knows we are both easily bored and easily amused.

Visit as many as you can and, if you see one you admire, don't be shy about emailing the owner and asking questions.

Don't be discouraged if you click on a few icons that don't go anywhere. Some Grumblers need to update their profiles. (Isn't that right, Tim?)
 

Bill Henry-

SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God
Joined
Aug 17, 2002
Posts
20,902
From
Boondock Bowerbank, ME
Business
Retired from the grind
There is some satisfaction and great money savings in doing it yourself. The niftiest feature of a digital camera is that you can preview the results and if you don’t like what you have done you can easily re-do it.

In addition to what Mike has suggested,

Get at least two (three is better) cheap floodlight reflectors from a local camera store and use the daylight (bluish) flood lamps. If you can get diffuser lenses, too, that will soften the harshness of the direct light. Generally a single flash from your camera will be way too harsh.

Play around and position those floodlights so that you can control the shadows. Some shadowing is necessary to give an object depth but you don’t want the shadows to be pitch black.

Grab an imaging editing program like Photoshop or Photoshop Elements, so that you can do some color corrections, background editing, and blemish removal.

Crucial: <u>After</u> you have edited the image, resize the image to 72 or 75 ppi before you upload them onto your web page! Higher resolutions will make your images appear gigantic on the page and make loading your page extremely slow.

Oh, yeah, welcome to The Grumble.
 

Cybil

Grumbler in Training
Thread starter
Joined
Jun 5, 2004
Posts
7
From
San Francisco
Thanks guys! Mike, your website rocks. I especially liked the page about framing 101. It is important to have the customer aware of the structural aspects of framing, as well as the aesthetic benefits. I will utilize all of the lighting suggestions you have listed. If all else fails, I'll hire a prefessional. Chau.
 

Mike Labbe

Administrator
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Joined
Jun 25, 2002
Posts
18,249
From
Lincoln, RI
Business
Get The Picture
Thanks,

Personally, I think our site is too wordy and in need of a SERIOUS facelift- but its bringing in the numbers. Hiring a pro is what I plan to do soon, probably after the holidays.

Next week's poll may be of interest to you. It will be about framing technology issues such as websites, computerized mat cutters, pricing software, etc. It's always interesting (for me at least, as a computer geek) to see the results. It may give you some direction for some of the recent questions.

Have a great weekend
Mike
 
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