background · photography

About Wendell

After one of our designs is photographed, we are faced with the difficult task of choosing which photo to use for the pattern. Our fantastic photographer will usually give us a number of good shots and it’s up to us to decide which image showcases the knit or crocheted item best, using the amount of space we have on the page or screen. In that one picture, we want to convey as much about the project as we can. An ideal photograph should answer important questions about the project:

  • How does the item fit? Is it designed to be worn loose or snug?
  • How long is it? Is it a cropped design, or does it hit at the waist, hip, or even lower?
  • There should be at least a suggestion of the item’s construction. For a sweater, are the sleeves set-in or raglan?
  • What kinds of stitches are used? Is there a ribbed edging? Is there stockinette, lace, cables, colorwork, or texture?
  • What is the overall fabric like? Is it stiff and rigid, or soft and drapey?
  • What kind of trim details are there? Does it fasten with buttons, or hang open? Is there a zipper or drawstring?
  • Are there any other special features?

Sometimes, though, we end up with a photo that we absolutely love, but isn’t the most successful at answering the important questions. It’s those times that we feel torn – should we go with the most beautiful photograph, or the most accurate representation of the actual item? In the end, practicality wins out.

Those gorgeous but not as informative photographs usually find their way into things like our audio slideshows, advertisements, or this blog… This week’s free pattern in our KnitBits newsletter is an easy vest called Wendell. Here’s the photo chosen to most accurately show the pattern:

And here’s the image that had to take a backseat. It was a little too far away to show the vest’s details, but the curved shape of the tree trunk and the model’s windswept skirt made for a really great photo:

Norah and I have recently been sifting through the pictures from our Spring 2012 shoot, and going through this same decision-making process. It can be tough, but it’s always worth the effort!


4 thoughts on “About Wendell

  1. I know how tricky photographing knitwear can be – I’ve done it myself a few times, with mixed results! It definitely takes some practice…

  2. Love that photo with the tall tree – looks like a great tree for sitting under on a sunny day…

  3. This is exactly why those of us that take photos of FOs and designs take lots of shots. Much better to have too many to choose from than not enough!

    It is amazing to actually write down all the questions one expects a good design photo to answer. We all just internalize much of that expectation.

  4. I really appreciate this post. Since I often end up taking photos myself, I tend to forget some important detail. I’m going to keep your list with me from not on as a checklist. Great information – thank you!

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