Learning Activity – Product Photography.

Learning Activities

1 – Draw up a list of the most important factors of a product photograph. Refer to shadows, lighting, quality, ISO and editing in your answer. Mention at least five things.

Shadows : Harsh shadows are to be avoided for the most part in a product photograph.By diffusing the lighting in your setup and moving the lights around trying to figure out what gives the least amount of shadows if any, as well as by diffusing the light you get softer shadows, meaning they are more gradient than a direct and very visible shadow.

Lighting : Depending on what you are photographing, lighting always plays a big role in a good product photo. You can shape the lighting by bouncing it of a white background as well as moving the lights around to complement the product being photographed. Bright lights can also create harsh shadows as forementioned, however by using sheets of thin white paper or plastic in front of the lights you can diffuse it and make it less direct.This method may have a more flattering effect on the surface of what you are photographing.

Quality : Quality is important when shooting images for a catalog. You create good quality in the photos by making sure you have good lighting and a decent setup and backdrop. Another way to vastly improve imagery is to make sure you are taking photos in RAW format. This gives you more options to tweak and improve the images in post production.

ISO : The ISO configuration of your camera when taking product photos should always be at ISO 100. This is to minimize graining and spots your images. You can easily do this by creating a good lighting setup instead of tweaking your ISO. In other styles of photo shooting the ISO can be tweaked a little with no big issue, however in product photography the rule is to stick to ISO 100.

Editing : In post production you get a closer look on the images from the product photo shoot, even if the image has good lighting and a backdrop, alot of the time you don’t see any issue with the imagery before you see it properly on a screen or in editing.Small composition and exposure tweaks may enhance the image and is an easy and good way to ensure the photos are of the correct quality. It is also a good idea to start cataloging product imagery depending on clients etc from the get go.
2 – Make your own DIY light tent.

I started bye creating an 90 degree angled white wall. On this i could add a thick white paper as a backdrop to create a infinity curve for my product imagery. I also have two decent office lamps with 1000 lumen light bulbs mounted in them. The lamps are arm mounted so this made the lighting easy to move around depending on what i was photographing. I also experimented with white sheets of paper to soften the lights as well as some semi see through plastic bags for diffusion.

I also added some sheets of white here and there when needed to bounce more light around.

The product photos i tand ok with this setup came out pretty nice, especially if compared with taking images with no backdrop or product photography setup.

We were asked to photograph Something silver, something fluffy, something hard and a liquid.

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