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Sourcing unique props that make your images more memorable

Are you serious about churning out some eye catching and memorable images? Of course you are! Then you need to have some unique props at the ready and you need to know where to look to find them. We’re talking low cost options that will see you filling your prop box to the brim. For years I have been a frequent visitor of op shops to source props. There are almost always some unique and visually appealing props just waiting to be discovered. On my most recent outing I thought I would take some snaps to show you the shopping in action. To demonstrate the execution of the vision I’ll also show you these items styled in images.

Once you have a good feel for what will work as a prop, you can search your average op shop within 10 minutes. Within a few seconds of arriving at my first stop I had spotted this little mirror that I knew would fit perfectly into multiple settings.

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I could see it slotting in well with fashion and beauty photo shoots and the size and shape meant it would be ideal for flat lays. The colours were fairly neutral, meaning it would fit in with a range of colour palettes. For $2 it was definitely a keeper!

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A couple of tables over, amongst various dinnerware, a little pink plate caught my eye. Small plates or bowls are ideal for providing layering options within styled images. This one was an interesting shape, textured, and a colour that i knew photographed well. Its matte surface also meant minimal reflection in photos (as opposed to the shiny plates in the background).

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Within a couple of days of getting it home, it had already featured in this image. The little white bag beneath it was also picked up for next to nothing in the same shopping trip.

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While browsing at the next shop I spied a stack of something interesting. I was on the lookout for props that would fit into bathroom styling and thought this item might have potential.

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On closer inspection I could see that its normal purpose was protecting bench tops from hot pots. However, the colour, shape and size meant that it would be very suitable for styling in a range of settings. At $5, it was a bit more than I would usually spend but I knew it would be great for the styling work I was about to do so it was coming home with me.

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The idea behind this prop wasn’t necessarily about the function but more about the feel that it gave to an overall theme. In the image below, it’s partially included in the frame so the audience can create their own interpretation of it. If I was to analyse it in this setting, perhaps I would see it as a soap tray in a beautiful bathroom.

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I’d love to know what amazing props you’ve picked up from op shops that you’ve visited. It really is the most cost effective way to find unique items, so get out there and give it a go if you haven’t already.

Selena HardmanComment