Product Photography: visualizing your vision!
Over the years, I have clients and colleagues ask me how I manage to make product photos look so good and lively. Hence, this piece is a little insight into the processes or methods I employed. I’m not particularly delving into the technical stuff. In fact, it is particularly targeted at potential clients and photography enthusiasts, lest they appreciate the work of a professional photographer better.
For an experienced photographer, the LIGHTING is all there is to it. Nevertheless, here’s how.
Neatness: this might seem obvious enough, but many photographers don’t do justice to cleanliness. These are the little things that differentiate the amateur from the pro. Product photography involves shooting small items which will appear larger on screen. Every dust particle, matter, or fingerprints will be seen too. Although this can be taken care off during post production, I prefer and think it is better to account for them initially. Spotting all these later is not easy, they often get missed.
Background: keeping it simple: product photography. Simple is best. I like to use a continuous background. Preferably white, black, gray or mirrored surfaces. It gives me a simple and professional look and meets standards used by most major e-commerce and high-end commercial photography clients.
Lighting: getting this part correctly sets me 50% on my way to achieving my targets. Real studio strobes are an industry standard that works for almost everyone. I’m particularly stoked about soft lighting, so diffusers, umbrellas, and lighting gears are some of my usual. Understanding shadows are paramount if you want to achieve images exactly as you desire. Hence, I incorporate multiple light sources to eliminate them if desired and to give the item shape and texture.
Camera: I use the best possible camera for the job. It is really important and the equipment a professional is expected to invest more on. General product photography doesn’t involve any movement, so every photo must be “tack” sharp. I have been able to determine the distance between the subject and the camera to achieve more natural shots.
Post production: the more that can be done in front of the camera or “in the lens” the better. This part of the process is as important and takes as much attention to detail as everything that came before it. Speed and accuracy are vital.