by Pamela Palmer

#28, October 4, 2004

Photographing Books
Effective Photos for Online Bookselling

What lures an online buyer to choose one book over another? Could be condition. Could be price. But often it's the photographs that make the difference. Skilled book photography takes auctions to a higher level, conveying a sense of value and mystique that captures the imagination. That's when buyers get a serious desire to own that book.

Effective book photography doesn't happen by chance. The good news, though, is improving your skills doesn't have to take long - and BookThink tells you how.

How to Photograph Books
Part I - An Introduction to Flashpoints

Start with flashpoints, those specific features of books that trigger an emotional response. In this first article in the book photography series, Craig Stark gets specific about the four intuitive elements driving buyers to your listings.

How to Photograph Books
Part II - What to Take Pictures Of

Before aiming the camera, stop to think. What features of this particular book will make the sale? The answer lies in knowing the keys to exterior and interior shot selection. A quick list makes picture choice easy.

How to Photograph Books
Part III - How to Take Pictures of Books

Photography don'ts clearly demonstrate how most auction photos fail with buyers. Learn how to take the typical auction photo to a new plane - and get it right.

How to Photograph Books
Part IV - Image Editing

Just-into-digital photos lack that certain something that makes them zing. The secret is in savvy - and honest - editing. All it takes is a little know-how and practice.

Book Cosmetology
Part I - Cleaning

Before removing the lens cap, consider a makeover if the book looks less that its best. Learn the gentle art of cleanings - and a few caveats.

Book Cosmetology
Part II - Mr. Clean's Magic Eraser

As a rule, cleaning products and techniques aren't book friendly because the materials used to make books are so vulnerable to damage by acid (a common cleaner component) or techniques that involve some species of mechanical assault. Fortunately, there are exceptions, and today's feature article on book cosmetology showcases an effective cleaning product that behaves something like sandpaper.

BookThink's Scanning Jig
The quick way to destroy a book's value is to squash it on a scanner. Flatten it too much, and the spine cracks, making values plummet. BookThink's Scanning Jig helps minimize the risk. Find out how to build it in this article.



How to Build An Effective
eBay Presentation
Part I: What Your Buyer Wants to Know from You: Photographic Content

In a recent BookThinker article I discussed some coming attractions at BookThink, one of which was an article on how to build an effective eBay auction template. After giving it more thought, it occurred to me that it might be more useful to readers if I expanded this into a series of articles that addressed not only the design or shell of a presentation but its content as well. Both are vitally important for communicating information to your buyers, and either can sometimes make or break a sale, not to mention affect final values hugely.

How to Photograph Thick Books
Alternate Uses for Bookends

A few issues back I mentioned that I would be publishing more letters to the editor. Well, I received a lengthy one several weeks ago that I truly intended to publish, but before I knew it, the writer had expanded it into a how-to article on photographing thick books. And a good one at that. In any case, this also appears in today's BookThinker, and I'm happy to introduce you to eBay bookseller Chuck Haney.



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Questions or comments?
Contact the editor, Craig Stark

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