03/08/2019 at 1:12 am #58344
- Location: St. Charles, IL
I am currently taking photos in my basement which has fluorescent light bulbs. My background is white but I sometimes get dark pictures that I just cannot use. Is this a matter of needing a bright light source nearby to help? If so, does anyone have a bulb recommendation? Or any other thoughts?0
03/08/2019 at 3:00 am #58345
- Location: Leicester
It appears that the bulbs are flickering at 120 Hertz (i.e. 120 times a second, or twice the US mains frequency), which flickering usually can’t be discerned by people. Presumably all the bulbs flicker at the same rate and time, so a shutter speed of 1/240 of a second or faster will sometimes produce a dark photo.0
03/08/2019 at 10:20 am #58351
- Location: Virginia
SpartyQ, can you share some photos of your lighting set up, and what the listings results look like?0
03/08/2019 at 10:56 am #58356
I had this issue – for years…
I did a few things that have completely made things almost perfect:
-switched to daylight LED bulbs. I currently have 4 x 100w equivalents going in my photo area. 3 are fixed, one I can hold by hand to move around to prevent glare or get light where I need it. This was the best change I made.
-bought a camera with a white balance setting (you have to adjust it occasionally)
-switched to a non-reflective surface for my background (I read that some light may bounce back to the camera on glossy surfaces and that would adjust the brightness)
My photos are turning out great now – almost if I pulled them from a retail website.1+
03/08/2019 at 11:08 am #58358
03/08/2019 at 2:49 pm #58362
03/08/2019 at 3:54 pm #58363
We use the Nikon 1 J2 – we actually have three of them as my wife and I take pictures at the same time, and have different photo areas for small items and our mannequins.
It has a lot of settings to play with (which 99% I don’t understand) but it takes really good photos.
We’re not even close to being camera experts – we just happened to get one (because it was pink and my wife wanted a pink camera, and it had good reviews 5 years or so when it came out), we liked it, and bought another for me to use.
There are newer models of this camera, but the J2 is good enough for what we do. We picked up our third one at a garage sale last summer with 3 different lenses for $20 – but they are much more on eBay. I think we are committed to the Nikon 1 camera series as we have a box of lenses, a bunch of battery chargers, a stack of spare batteries – and we will keep buying back-ups as we find them. But I’m sure there are other good models from other makes – you just need to find one that is cheap, does the job you want, and start collecting parts/lenses/batteries/accessories for it as you find them.0
03/09/2019 at 11:06 am #58370
Yeah, I’m beginning to think that DSLR or Mirrorless is the way to go.0
03/09/2019 at 2:53 pm #58373
- Location: Central NJ
For lighting, I bought something like this (based on recommendations from forum posts):
For a camera, I recently upgraded my iPhone to a 7 Plus. I did that based on research that the 7 Plus had an upgraded zoom lens over the 7. The drawback is that it is too large for a cell phone, but I’m very happy with the photos.0
03/09/2019 at 6:13 pm #58377
Sharyn, do you use the app to load photos? How do you edit the photos if you don’t like them? I tried using my phone, but the camera is shyte and I hated the end result. Ended up deleting them all and using a camera and editing on the PC. Would love to be able to use the app and upload straight into the listing, but I’m such an OCD twit that it frustrates me not being able to edit the pics.
I’ve been looking into upgrading to a Pixel 3 (I have a Nexus 6) and they say the camera is awesome. About the same price as a baby DSLR though…0
03/09/2019 at 8:14 pm #58381
- Location: Central NJ
I take the photos in square mode on my phone using the camera app.
I then get on the computer to create the listings and save them as drafts.
I open each listing on the app and upload the photos. Once the photos have uploaded, I save and close the listing in the app.
I get back on the computer to edit the photos and create the rest of the listing. I only use the eBay functionality to edit. Usually, it’s usually just to lighten and occasionally to rotate.
The camera app has ways to adjust focus and light. I can touch the screen where I want the camera to focus, and then a light adjustment line pops up. I can move the pointer up to lighten the photo. I’m not really explaining this very well, but I googled it when I was trying to improve my photos. A few websites explain how to do this. I don’t do it much because it takes time, and I’m usually just trying to get my photos done as fast as possible.
The iPhone 7 plus definitely takes better photos than my 5c did, and the zoom capability is really amazing.
It’s really better not to be a perfectionist, but just work on your skills occasionally. I’m sure that better photos help sell something faster, but only when you go from so-so to really good. For used items, I don’t think it helps to go from really good to exceptional.
You’ve mentioned the OCD thing before, so you have to work the way that is best for you. If you can figure out how to let go a bit, you’d be able to list much more.1+
03/10/2019 at 4:07 pm #58401
- Location: Washington DC
@spartyq After experimenting with a couple different cameras I take all my pictures with my iPhone 7 but it HATES white backgrounds. The items always came out too dark. So now I have a tan rug I use as a background that works much better, or tan file folders for small items, or a medium brown wood table top. If a large item is tan or light-colored itself or would be washed out in a tan carpet background, I use a dark brown or dark green blanket. I personally find that too bright a light source creates shadows and wash out so I no longer use a lightbox setup. The iPhone seems to like it not too bright.0
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