5 Business Card Photography Tips

Articles June 17, 2009

1. Picking the Perfect Background

When photographing your business cards, spending some time picking out a great background can go a long way compared to just shooting them on your scratched up work desk. Look for something that compliments your business cards color, texture and style. Just make sure that the background does not overpower the actual design. A busy background will distract the viewer from the beauty of your work. Try using a neutral color, a contrasting color that makes your design pop or keep the focus sharp on the design and blur out the background a bit.

2. Bring Out the Texture

Some of the best business cards use high-quality card stock or unusual mediums to print the cards on. If you have spent a lot of time and money on extra touches like texture for your cards why not let it shine in your photographs. Texture is not only wonderful to feel, but it can make cards look amazing. When you shoot your cards make sure you can see the texture in the photos. To do so you may need to play with the focus, take close up shots and adjust background colors.

3. Picking the Perfect Position

Nothing is more boring than shooting your cards flat on a table looking directly down on them. Try experimenting with different views, positions, heights, distances and so on so you can get a photo that looks dynamic. The more photos you take in different positions the better your chances will be of finding that perfect shot.

4. Focus on the Focus

Its extremely important to make sure your photo is in focus, because a blurred photo is painful to look at!. Play around with the focus and make sure the important part of the card is clearly in focus. Beautiful typography on your cards will be wasted if you cant capture it properly with the camera.

5. Lighting, Lighting, Lighting

A large part of photography has to do with proper lighting and this can often be very difficult to achieve. Try experimenting with both natural lighting such as outdoor lighting and artificial lighting by using photography lights that you can adjust. bad lighting can make your photos look faded, bland, unprofessional and really just do more harm than good. So make sure you spend plenty of time experimenting with lighting so you can achieve the exact look you are going for.

Examples of Beautifully Photographed Business Cards

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Cadence is You The Designer's senior blogger, and the most jack-of-all-trades of the staff. She's always trying out something different every day, some of which fuels her posts here on the blog. Let her know if you want us to post more about your favorite topic - she might know more than a thing or two about it!

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  • http://www.jonathanpatterson.com Jonathan Patterson

    Yeah, lighting is key. It’s so hard to do too. I’m no Photographer so whenever possible I use Photoshop to mimic photography effects.

  • sara

    i need to see the all beahuty art works.

  • http://blog.callumchapman.com/ Callum Chapman

    Great tips, thanks

  • Gino

    Yeah a lot can be done in Photoshop to spice up photographs which is a big bonus for designers who already know how to edit well in PS.

  • http://www.pro-filemarketing.com Maria

    Thanks for these great tips. I wish I saw this post 2 months ago.

  • http://www.solarisedesign.co.uk Robin

    Excellent little article, thanks – Reminds me I need to get some high quality cards printed up soon

  • http://atreyee.wordpress.com/ Atreyee

    Nice post and quite informative tips. Great work mate! Keep it up…

  • http://www.hisubash.com Aneslin

    wow, great tips.
    thansk.

    I like ur theme bro. its simply superb
    y dont u put a comment subscription check box ?

  • http://www.oneononetutorials.com Jeevan

    FridgeBox design is the one I like. Black on silver logo foiled.

  • http://www.website-design-oxfordshire.co.uk Oxford Web Design

    great tips, thanks

  • http://www.jragonvisuals.com Julie Wickstrom

    I love PhotoShop but there is no substitute for a dynamic well-lit photography to base your piece off of in the first place.

  • http://www.jragonvisuals.com Julie Wickstrom

    I love PhotoShop but there is no substitute for dynamic well-lit photography to base your piece off of in the first place.

  • http://empire-elements.co.uk Angela

    These are brilliant ideas and I think anyone who is interested in creating a innovative business card, should read this article.

    Best of Luck in your ventures.

  • http://www.brandymedia.co.uk Andy Griffiths

    Great idea about finding a suitable background that can show a contrast that works in favour of bringing out the graphics on the card. Lighting is definitely the key to photography and it is something that most amateurs really struggle with. Taking the time to really think about the right lighting can really make you photographs look straight from the studio.

  • http://inlovewithdaisies.blogspot.com Daisy

    Ohh cool! These are great suggestions! And I love the simplicity and elegance of the last one. I find it very professional!

  • http://www.kaplang.com Kaplang

    these are really useful tips, I have redesigned my business card twice now and still not happy with the printed result, so its back to the drawing board for me again :)

  • http://www.crearedesign.co.uk paul

    some nice shot there! fair doo’s, absolutely right about lighting and textures do feel nice to the touch! thanks for the post.

  • http://new-logo.co.uk/ Matt – New-Logo.co.uk

    I really like the first image the background really compliments the beautiful card. I think it is really hard to get a good photograph of printed work. I have tried a few times but getting the lighting right for the photo is quite difficult especially if you do not have the right equipment. I really like the focus on the first image as well how the background is slightly out of focus to emphasise the card in the foreground. Thank you for sharing.

  • http://www.keeble.uk.com/ Keeble

    Photographing design for portfolio sites is the future. It looks sooo much better that flat artwork on screen, and its the only way to show of special finishes and stock.

  • http://wisnu.masteriklaninternet.com/ purwokerto

    amazing tips,thanks for sharing this.

  • http://www.arenacreative.com/ arenacreative.com

    Macros are especially challenging, and way harder than they look. Great examples here! To get the full thing in focus make sure to use a tripod and stop down the lens to f22, for example. Don’t try to hand hold the shot at f22, it’s just not gonna work. Mini tripods work great for tabletop setups.

  • http://www.website-design-oxfordshire.co.uk Jo Oxford

    Thanks for the useful tip, will help a lot when I next update my business card portfolio.

  • http://www.kimberlyrobertsdesign.com Kimberly Roberts Design

    Thanks for sharing this. I hadn’t thought to photograph the physical printed piece for my portfolio.

  • http://nwds-ak.com Alaska Web Design

    Why do people photograph their business cards???

  • http://www.infobisnispurwokerto.com info bisnis

    its nice collection, great post bos, pram from Indonesia say Hello and wish you all best.