How to Take Better Photos of Your Knitting and Crochet Projects
If you feel like the photos you’re taking of your projects or yarn are looking bland or you can’t seem to capture the colors and texture for Etsy, Love Crafts, Instagram, or Ravelry, you may simply need a few pointers to get your photos in tip-top shape and not a new camera.
In this article we’ll give you tips for photographing your yarn, your works in progress, and your finished projects. All of these tips can be used for crochet, knitting, and Tunisian crochet.
The best time to take photos
Early morning and late afternoon – when the light is diffused but still full – are the best times to take photos of your projects. Natural light is also almost always better to use instead of using your camera’s flash.
If you’re photographing a project that’s made with a dark color yarn, you may need to play around with the time of day that you take the photos in, in order to get the best stitch definition. Otherwise you may end up with your project looking more like a dark blob in the photo than an intricate piece of work!
You can also photograph dark projects at a very slight angle. This will let the stitch definition show up better on the photo. Play around with the light through a window, etc. to also make use of slanted light to get the best stitch definition while keeping the true color of the piece.
Where to focus in the photo
Before you take the photo, decide where you want the viewer’s eye to be drawn to. For example, you want them to look at your project, not the props in the background. Make sure that your focus is sharp on the project itself. (This is usually done by tapping on the screen where you want the focus to be.)
If you find that the photos are blurry, try taking a deep breath and then holding it while you’re taking the photo.
However, don’t just take flat photos of your work. SpaceCadet Yarn notes that you can take photos across your work, focusing on the part closest to the camera and blurring the background. If your project has a repeat pattern, this can be used to great effect!
You can also use this type of photography to make your works in progress a bit more interesting.
Tip! Don’t tilt your phone when taking the photo as this will influence the perspective and can make the project seem out of proportion.
Which setting to use on your phone’s camera
When you’re taking photos of your projects or of yarn that are quite close-up, you need to use your camera (or phone camera’s) macro setting. This setting is usually labeled with a flower.
If you’re photographing someone modeling one of your finished pieces, however, you can just use the automatic settings on the camera and play around with light and exposure. Otherwise the whole image will be out of focus.
Try some filters and play with the exposure/ISO settings
You don’t only have to use filters once you load your photo onto Instagram. Play around with filters and exposure/ISO settings when taking your photos. The higher the exposure, the brighter your photo will be and the lower the exposure, the darker your photo will be.
Often, when the colors of your work don't show up right in a photo, playing around with filters and settings can remedy this.
Use flat lays to show off your work
One of the best ways to show off your work on Instagram or other websites is through flat lay photography. These photos are taken from above, with the photo laid out on a flat surface – usually with props. Here’s a tutorial by Craftsy that shows you just how to go about arranging a flat lay.
Choose and Arrange Props for Instagram – Beautiful Flat-lay Photography Tutorial:
5 Essential Steps to Great FLAT LAY Photography Tutorial
How to update your Instagram account’s appearance
It’s quite quick and easy to update your Instagram’s appearance by choosing a color palette or specific type of shot (for example flat lay) or shots and only using those on your Instagram feed.
Pay attention to:
- The background/ backdrop – You don’t have to look far for a background for your project; cardstock (white or colored), paper (white or colored), a table, and flooring can all be used as backgrounds. To create a never-ending backdrop, use a large sheet of paper and stand it against the wall so that half is against the wall and half is on the ground.
- Use props – crochet or knitting tools and notions, plants, cut flowers, books, tea or coffee, etc. to create a scene around your project. Just be very careful if you’re using candles!
- Angles – Make sure that you don’t tilt the phone or camera when taking the photos.
What’s your favorite photography trick? Tell us in the comments or over on our Facebook Group!