12 June 2008

Frequently Asked Questions

First, I want to say thank you for reading this blog and for all of your comments. It's been nearly a year ago that I started blogging and I feel it's grown leaps and bounds since then. I can't even tell you how many posts I did before I got a single comment. It's been wonderful and most unexpected to "meet" so many people that I consider my friends even though we've never met face to face. I thought I'd take a moment to answer some of your questions that have come up lately in the comments. Maybe from time to time I can include a FAQ section in the blog so if you have any other questions, please let me know. Thanks again! Love ya! - SJ

What kind of camera do you use?

I use a simple digital snapshot camera, a Canon Powershot SD1000. It’s small and light and fits in my pocket or purse with no problem. I do love vintage cameras and between my boyfriend and me, we have collected quite a few: a Holga, a Polaroid Land camera, another Polaroid instant camera as well as several others. But, for everyday shots, the digital is my best friend.

How do you get your photos to look like that?

While I love the look that you achieve with these vintage cameras, I find the cost of film and developing to be prohibitive. Plus, with most of these (besides Polaroids) it takes too long to get the photos back; especially for the purpose of using them on the blog. Look, here’s what I wore two weeks ago before I sent my film to be developed! ;) Also, there’s the added consideration that the chemicals used for developing film, even Polaroids, are highly toxic and terrible for the environment.

So the short answer is I’ve learned to use Photoshop to achieve the look of a vintage photograph without all the cost – to me and the environment.

Who takes your photos?

Most of the photos on the blog are taken by me, myself and I using my digital snapshot camera and a tripod. Sometimes, my lovely boyfriend lends his eye and snaps a few shots for me. Anytime he helps, I credit him under the photos. You can see more of his photos here and here. If you don’t see him credited it’s safe to assume that I took the photos. It would be nice to have your own personal photographer follow you around at all times but it turns out that all you really need is a camera, a tripod and no sense of embarrassment. Trust me. Set that tripod up in public and start taking photos of yourself and you’ll get some seriously strange looks.

How do I start my own Ebay store?

I’m sure everyone that has started an Ebay store has taken a different path. My path started nearly a year ago when I posted twelve items. I had no idea if anyone would even see my auctions or if any of the pieces would sell. Luckily people did indeed discover the auctions, the pieces did sell and I’ve been going ever since.

I did a lot of online research, learned some basic HTML, asked my graphic designer boyfriend for help and dove in head first.

Is it a lot of work?

Yes. But it’s also a lot of fun. I mean, I vintage shop for a living. I feel lucky everyday for that fact alone. But it’s not all about the shopping. There’s also taking photos of each piece, writing the descriptions and taking measurements (for some reason this is my least favorite part), keeping up with all the correspondence from your buyers, preparing packages for mailing including all customs forms for overseas shipments and trips to the post office. It can become quite time consuming. These are just a few things to consider if you want to start your own store. If you do, good luck!

16 comments:

annabananna said...

thanks for all the infos :)

absolut_feli said...

I have been a lurker of your blog for a while now and I have always wondered how you achieve that "vintagy" look on your photos.

Thank you for sharing. I also like how all you need is a simple camera and it does the trick. :*)

The Stylish Wanderer said...

I use picnik.com to make it look vintage, its a lot easier than photobucket and its faster too

Cammila said...

I've been meaning to comment for a while that I love the vintage look of your photos. Film photography isn't conducive to blogging, but it's still a shame that Polaroid is discontinuing their film.

T.S.D said...

Thanks a lot for answering questions that've been in my mind esp. the vintage effects on the photos!

AsianCajuns said...

Thanks so much for this post! I always think your photos look like works of art--- this has inspired me to put my photoshopping muscle to work and not be so worried about posing in public ;)

Alice Point said...

This post is really interesting. It gives me a few advices:)

Alice:)

Hailey @ stylesymmetry.com said...

I used to sell on ebay a bit and agree ti is a lot of work! I should really get back into it. I'd love to make it a 'real' job. :-)

Ash1314 said...

"funny looks"...haha...I get that and I actually HAVE people taking pics of me...mostly my neihbors...they must think im full of it or something...who knows...lol....thank gosh for the BF and little bro! I don't even have a tripod :s...great post! I always love to get to know my fave blogers just a little more...p.s. IM LINKING YOU! I find I always come back to your blog to read it =)

michelle said...

Congratulations on your year anniversary of blogging! :D

Rhiannon said...

I had no idea you took all those outdoor photos yourself!! I've been trying to do more outside too and it's hard!! I get embarrassed too easily . . . now I think I'm going to try to get brave enough by imagining you with your tripod on the city streets!

AlicePleasance said...

I'm about to buy the same camera :-) I have to buy a tripod too and as rhiannon wrote above, I'll try to be brave enough to use it in public...!

Natalie said...

Hi, would you mind sharing how you achieve a vintage look in photo using Photoshop?

Sally Jane said...

Thanks for all the comments!

I'm glad it's encouraged some of you to take more photos outdoors. When you start getting the strange looks just smile and wave and pretend you're practicing for when you're old and crazy! :)

Natalie: I hope you can understand that since I've worked to come up with a look for my photos that is unique and signature to my blog, I'm not ready to share the exact formula. Sorry! There are a million things you can do to a photo in Photoshop and if you play around with it maybe you can come up with a look all your own. :)

skinnyGLASSESgirl said...

HA plus now it's a sellers market since the buyers can no longer leave negative feedback. I'm angry with that. I've been selling vintage for years on ebay. I hate the measuring part also.. grr

Sasha said...

I Just found your Blog randomly and just wanted to say -as a photographer and lover of vintage fashion- this is a brilliant blog. I love your mini 'photo-editorials' great locations and vintage feeling! - I'll be back