IF the items I had were from my grandparents (such as a military uniform, wedding dress, festive attire, etc) I wouldn't be so eager to toss the clothing items. However, these items are 'that special'. They just help tell the story of who I was as a young person by showing off what I wore.
In preparing for these artifacts, I tried to lay them flat or put them on a hangar. They just never looked right. I did a little research about photographing T-Shirts on the internet and I kept coming across articles targeted at people wanting to sell their shirts on eBay or Etsy. Their number one hint for shirts is using a model. So, I decided to give it a try.
I set-up a PVC stand that my husband made and draped a LARGE piece of white muslin across the top and onto the floor. I felt like I had a 'real studio' (except I didn't have expensive lights). I placed my camera on a tripod and did a custom white balance adjustment. The following will show you my collection of items on myself and a surprise model at the end.
|Here's the first shirt.|
|This shirt brings back memories|
|Was the back of a shirt/costume interesting?|
|My jacket had A LOT of patches|
Do you want to know what activities I participated in high school? My letter-man jacket tells quite the story. Not to mention the untold story of my mother's sore fingers from putting all those patches on. I had so many letters that some of them were on the back side. My mother put patches for all the band and color guard competitions I attended down the sleeves. I also wore some of my solo & ensemble medals on the front of my jacket. Oh yeah, I was stylin'. Focus, Devon, focus.
You see? A letter-man jacket on a model shows the story of the person in the jacket. It comes to life on a model, while laid on a flat surface wouldn't have had the same effect. Yes I cropped off my head. Why? Because what I look like now doesn't matter. What matters is the jacket. So, I'm a headless wonder!
|Dance costumes anyone?|
|Get close up|
Are you ready for the surprise model? Here he is!
|Karate or sports uniforms?|
|Show case your personality|
So the best tips I have this week are to use a model for your personal and heritage clothing items. Photograph them in front of a white sheet. Set your camera to custom white balance. Put your camera on a tripod and have at it. Play around and enjoy making the stories behind the artifacts comes to life.
IF you are unable to put an item on a live person (for whatever reason), see if you have a seamstress friend who could let your borrow her dress form for a few days. Be sure you ask during their 'off-season' time. You might find other ways on-line to 'make a mannequin' as well. The point is, use some kind of model for your clothing items. It really does make all the difference.