Home > Artist Tips, Digital Design, Photography, Uncategorized > Artist Tip: Best Portfolio Photograph – Cut It Out!

Artist Tip: Best Portfolio Photograph – Cut It Out!

June 5, 2011

Do you want the best photographs of your art?  Get rid of any distractions.  You just want people to look at your art, only your art and nothing but your art.

I photographed these two custom assemblage pieces of art from my friend Pam Batista in full sunlight during or close to an evening Golden Hour time frame against a white paper sweep.  I propped each work up on an easel to get the best light and use of cast shadows.  Diffuse light might have been better, but I went with full sun because I did not want the works to look flat.  Also, I would have had to create diffuse light indoors at night with electric lamps and did not want to trade off the richer color saturation of sunlight versus eliminating cast shadows.

Here are the photographs of the art works after cropping and color correction.

The same time and location was used to shoot them; one has a cooler coloration because of the colors of the art.  I learned how much subject matter can change the overall hue of a close-up photograph when I shot some gemstones for a friend.  I wanted them to look better and be more consistent, relate to each other better because of the similarity in materials.

I cut out the art objects in Photoshop and used the exact same gray color background for the images.  See how much better they look compared the the above images!  The easels and shadows cast by the whole set up are missing.  I think this is a huge improvement.

I highly recommend having Photoshop and learning how to use it well, even if you are a traditional, physical media artist.  Or find someone to wrangle the digital end of presenting your art.  There are free lessons online for the Creative Suite 4 here which would also work for the prior version of CS3.  Version 5.5 is out, and I have heard that Flash is radically improved in ease of use, but I’m going to be rolling with CS4 indefinitely because CS5.5 costs demasiado dinero.  Older versions of Photoshop will give you the tools to do the kind of digital presentation shown above and will be more cost effective.  Avoid Photoshop Elements, the program is too stripped down to be very helpful and does not run very well.

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