Business,  Tips

Make Your Products POP!

You may make a delicious loaf of artisan bread, or killer macrons, but if the photos of your products are not appetizing people may not buy from you. I can’t recall how many times I’ve viewed some very talented people’s baked goods and thought to myself, if only they would buy a background and use a couple apps to really make their pictures pop. When you are selling by using photos on social media as a main way to grab people’s attention, you want to make sure that your photos actually grab their attention and make their mouth water!

Before I became aware of backdrops and before iPhone’s had photography apps, I would get out my big camera and hang either wrapping paper or a blanket up to get a clean background. I would then have to upload my photo to my computer and edit it with Photoshop. It was a huge hassle!

Before I ever had a backdrop, I would hang wrapping paper and blankets up to get a solid background. You can see the wrinkles. 😛

Backdrops

Let’s dive deeper into backdrops. First, I can already hear the people on a budget yelling that they can’t afford pricey backdrops. They are just getting started and the funds aren’t there. Well, good thing I have a tip for you as well! 😉 Before I ever purchased a real vinyl backdrop, I used a tri-fold poster board from Walmart. You can also buy theses from other stores. Walmart has them starting for around $2.77 online. My pick would be the Elmer’s Tri-Fold Foam Display that is around $7-10. I would also recommend using a flat foam poster board under the baked good as well. Then find some great lighting and take some photos!

This cake was photographed with a Foam Tri-Fold Board as the backdrop.

Let’s talk about the “fancy” backdrops now. If you are willing to invest a little more into the product then I would recommend buying a backdrop made of vinyl or other materials with varying prints.

I personally own two Bakedrops from Sugar High. I love these. It’s a large piece of vinyl that I either tape, or push-pin to the wall. I wish I had the space to always have this set up, but I don’t. You can even purchase a photography backdrop stand to hold this up if you are really feeling like investing, like my business partner did.

Final cake photo with the Bakedrop by Sugar High

There are several other options. One I just came across, and what actually inspired this post are the backdrops from Best Ever Backdrops.

These amazing photography backdrops are printed on a 100% waterproof, non-glare, 1/8″ thick rigid substrate. Virtually indestructible, they’re amazingly lightweight, easy to clean, and completely stain resistant. They can be stored anywhere so you don’t need to build a shed to house them. If you’re on the go, you can carry carry them and shoot anywhere. Durable and long-lasting, they’re proudly Made in the USA by her company, HomePlates Worldwide.

Best Ever Backdrops are a little more of an investment, but they have some really beautiful options!

Gorgeous Blues backdrop by Best Ever Backdrops

Think About The Background

Even if you don’t have a backdrop, my #1 tip would be to think about what is in your photo besides the product. I have seen some really crazy backgrounds before! A lovely cake with cleaning supplies and other junk in the background, or a home baker taking photos of their work with open soda cans and other food products behind the product. No, just no. After a while of overly thinking about the background you will find yourself always doing this, even when it’s photos of your kids, trust me.

Photography

Now that we have talked backdrops let’s talk photography. You do not need a fancy camera anymore to take quality photos of your products. I own a fancy camera, and I usually take photos of my work just because. Still, it’s too much of a pain to upload those photos to my computer and edit them there. I always take photos with my iPhone and use apps to edit and immediately share them online. This is also the most convenient way. After I deliver a cake, I want to share that cake immediately and this is the best way!

I haven’t quite got the lighting down, but this is where iPhone apps can come in and help. I have yet to invest in good lighting, so I open every window and get as much light as possible. Then I use an app to edit the brightness, warmth and other options to make the photo pop.

My favorite iPhone apps for editing and making posts are:

*I did not make this cake and do not own this photo. I found this photo in the comments of a cake group and I wanted to edit it for fun. I cannot remember who made it 🙁 This is why you should watermark! 😉

I like this example above on what you can do with Snapseed. While not perfect, I was able to remove the switch on the wall and then added some brightness and warmth to the photo. The Phonto and Canva apps are great for making posts with words, and for making great content to share. If this baker had used the iWatermark+ app then their logo or name could be added to the photo.

iPhone At Home Vs. Real World

The only time I have found a larger camera as a necessity are the very few times I have delivered a cake and the lighting has been less than stellar. Once I delivered a cake to a beautiful venue, but the cake was outside in an open room that was dark. To my dismay and after 24 hours of no sleep, I realized I had left my big “fancy” camera at home. I had to use my iPhone, and the gorgeous wedding cake didn’t look as good as it could have. I wasn’t able to set the cake up and take photos at home because it was so large it had to be assembled on site. So if you have a bigger camera I would recommend taking it along for on-site deliveries just in case!

So dark that even apps couldn’t fix the fact that the lighting wasn’t good with this one. 🙁

As you can see there are some fairly simple ways to really make your work POP, and make your customer’s mouths water for more! If you have some tips that weren’t mentioned, add them in the comments as we’d love to hear them!

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