Monday, November 29, 2010

Promotional Tips: Submitting Photos for Print Media

Some of the most popular and effective promotional materials are designs that feature photos of staff or products. There are many details to consider when planning an order featuring photography. When quality is your main concern, then it is best to use a professional photographer. This is costly, but the one-time expense of having a professional shoot your entire line of products or staff can be a huge benefit to your business in the long run. You must also consider the licensing aspect of utilizing professional work to promote your company or its products.

However, I acknowledge that there are many situations where it is not possible to use a professional, and many business owners must rely on their own photography skills to get the job done. Sometimes its an issue of time, other times it is not in the budget for your project. The most important thing to remember is that it is also costly to pay your graphic designer to edit poorly taken photos. The beauty of digital technology enables you to take hundreds of shots, and keep the best of them. The most important thing to consider when submitting photos is flexibility.

For the most flexibility in using photos on a variety of promotional items, it is best to consider the final product when taking the picture:

Problem #1: Poor Lighting

Solution: Evaluate the background and lighting. 

Choose an area with a pleasant background suitable for your photo. If the lighting is coming in from behind the object you are photographing, the object will look dark or appear to be in the shade. You want your lighting to come in from above and to the front of the object or individual you are photographing.  Outdoor photos are best, as natural sunlight provides the best lighting during the hours before noon and after 2:00 p.m.

Problem #2: Cropped too close

Solution: Step backward or zoom out!

Don't crop your photos to the size you think you will want them. Leaving extra background around your object or individual provides many more opportunities and uses for the photos you are taking. You need to have extra space above and around a person's face in order to get the best type of promotional shot. This gives the designer a better option, and control over how the image will appear. Cropping can take place as needed for use on a variety of items.

Problem #3: Only One Shot

Solution: Supply more than one choice

The beauty of digital photography is that you can take hundreds of photos at a time and select only the best to keep. Giving your graphic designer options for your promotional photography can benefit your business and your products. If your designer has more photos to choose from, they can make better selections depending on the promotional item you are having produced, as well as emphasize the advertisement's message in a variety of ways.

Problem #4: Blur

Solution: Change your setting

If your photos are blurry, you may need to use a tripod. Steadying the camera works wonders for the sharpness of the image.  If you do not have a tripod, try setting the camera on any level surface while taking your photographs.

You may also need to increase your camera's pixel settings.  If your photos are low resolution, this setting can be changed easily on your camera. Printed photographs must be at least 300 resolution or higher for a clean, clear print quality. If you are unsure which setting to use, choose the highest resolution setting your camera has available. 


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