Are you holding your camera correctly when photographing furniture?

First off I want to thank everyone for all the positive comments regarding my new blog series on iPhone camera tips. I plan to continue to share useful tips using both the the iPhone camera and a DSLR on a regular basis. Since many of my designer friends are getting ready to attend High Point furniture market, I thought today’s tip might be especially useful. It’s something very basic but it can have a huge impact when photographing furniture, and the tip is is how to correctly hold the camera.

It is a very common mistake that I see all the time. Designers hold their camera or cell phone up high by their face, frame the photo, then tilt the camera slightly downward toward the subject and shoot. Tilting the camera down causes a distorted view and the subject appears wider at the top than at the bottom.

iphone photography

Camera held high up by face

In the above image I held my cell phone up by my face and then tilted it down to take the photo. See how the lines in the image converge inward in the lower part of the image? The distortion can always be corrected with an editing app but you won’t need to if you hold the camera level with the subject.

Now here is the same shot (unedited) with my cell phone camera held lower and level to the subject. Very little distortion.

iPhone photography

Camera held lower and level with subject

So the important lesson when photographing furniture is to be sure the camera is level and not tilting either upward or downward. Your cell phone or DSLR should be on the same level as the subject you are photographing. This may mean bending down or kneeling on the floor but it will result in a less distorted photo.

Here is another example and again I held the camera up by my eye level.

Camera help high and tilted down

Camera held up high and tilted downward

You can really see the distortion in the above photo. The bottom photo was then taken with the camera down around my waist level and held on a parallel plane to the console. See how much less distortion there is?

Camera held low and on parallel plane to console table

Camera held low and on parallel plane to console table

One other thing to be aware of is that the closer you are to the subject the higher the distortion. If possible stand back as far as possible and then crop in tighter later if needed.

I hope this camera tip was helpful and for all you designers heading to High Point, let me know if this improves your showroom photos.

Interested in more tips? You can catch up below.

How to Take Better Interior Photos with your iPhone

Photographing Pets and Kids with the iPhone

7 Responses to Are you holding your camera correctly when photographing furniture?
  1. Allyson Paris Reply

    Great series, I’m loving these tips! Thank you and enjoy High Point!

  2. Mariann roach Reply

    Great information and keep them coming!! I can use this information and you explain so well. Thank you!

  3. Jil Sonia McDonald Reply

    Gosh, I would never have thought of that!
    Such a great tip. They all work with my Blackberry as well 🙂

  4. carolanne Reply

    so love tips! loving this one, I am going to practice tomorrow taking pictures all over our showroom x

    • Linda Holt Reply

      Great! Let me know how it works out Carolanne!

  5. Nancy Powell Reply

    Thanks Linda! Can’t wait to see you!
    xo

    • Linda Holt Reply

      Me too Nancy!

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