Recently, I ran an informal poll of my Instagram community to see how people felt about photographing their knits. 172 of you responded, and of those 172, 162 of you–a full 96%–said you struggled as knitters to take good photos of your knit projects.
That’s not terribly surprising, when you think about it. Now that we all have cameras on our phones, it’s easy to snap a photo, but snapping a photo and snapping a *good* photo are two different things, aren’t they?
And taking pictures of knitting requires special consideration. We want to make sure people can see the stitches, that the yarn details are visible, and that the project is shown to our best capabilities. After all, we spent a lot of work on the thing. It’s nice to have a picture that reflects that.
This month, we’ll be talking about lots of tips and tricks to get better photos of our knitting. To do that effectively, though, first we need to diagnose the problem.
So let’s get into some details!
But first, a quick note: this post is one in a series of posts about ways to improve your knitting photography. Here are quick links to the other posts in the series.
Now, let’s get to it.
The Top Reasons It’s Hard for Knitters to Take Good Photos
In a follow-up slide on Instagram, I asked people about the biggest problem they struggled with. By far, the biggest concern was lighting. I’ve written a little about that before, but there’s always room to say more. Light is crucial.
The next biggest concern was composition. I think it’s easy to get caught up in feeling like you need the perfect flat-lay to take a good photo of your knitting. We can talk about how to take more effective flat-lays this month, but even more important is understanding the rule of thirds, when/how to move things into the foreground and background, and camera angles. We’ll go into detail on all of those.
To be honest, I was a little surprised by how few people said they struggled with editing. I think that might actually be because most people don’t realize how many of the photos they see on a regular basis are heavily edited. Every single photo I post has been corrected for lighting and color, at the very minimum. Yep, even the stories. Every. Single. One. So we’ll talk about editing this month, too, and how to use some simple, free phone software to your advantage.
Other Factors Complicating the Process
Of course, this is just the beginning of identifying challenges. I opened up a comment box for more specific issues people might be facing, and I got a bunch of great responses.
Here are some other issues knitters have struggled with:
- Maintaining a consistent aesthetic
- Accurately capturing yarn color
- Keeping things looking natural and unforced
There’s plenty of room to grow here, and I’m excited to explore these topics (and more!) with you all. Stay tuned in the coming month for action items and a photography challenge as we get toward the end. There’s lots to learn.