The Basics of Product Photography

Written by  on March 10, 2013 

Have you ever wonder why the pictures of products look much better than their actual look? The professional photographers might have been really good or there is lots of Photoshop-ing involved. The truth is; aside from the camera used, according to experts, it is all about the lighting.

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Cleanliness is also important when taking photographs as even the fragment of dust or fingerprints can be easily magnified on the screen. Aside from cleaning the items with fuzzy microfiber towels to absorb dust before digitally altering it, photographers also use nitrile exam gloves to prevent leaving their fingerprints. Background for the products is also essential, so some use heavy white paper or big flexible sheets of thin cardboard.

When it comes to lighting, battery-powered flash do not cut it. Professional photographers use studio strobes, which is cheaper, works better, and easier to set up and use, and three umbrellas. If you do not have the money for this, you can build your own lighting using incandescent 500-watt work lights. The umbrellas, meanwhile, are use to diffuse light. A third light can also be used to light the top of the product.

When shooting photos of products, it is important to invest on a high-quality camera. There are lots of digital SLRs today from reputable makers. You can use a point-and shoot digital camera with longer lens and zoom it to telephoto, so you can get close up photos. Look for one with specifications of 105mm manual focus macro, a depth of field of around f/22~32 that is setup at 250 or 500 W/s for things to look natural even when it is magnified.

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Photo by: Wanta

Product photography looks good when photographed from afar, so use a long lens, trigger the strobes from an on-camera flash, set a white-card white balance, and then process everything digitally.

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