In six simple steps I will go over with you how to save time and money on product photography and enhance the look of your photography.
1. Camera – It is always important to use a nice camera. Since digital cameras have come down in price over the years you can acquire a nice digital single lens reflex camera at a very reasonable price that will do the job. Using a DSLR camera was usually the norm when taking product photographs but with the change in the smartphones today, it has totally changed the game. Since the iphone 6 has an 8 megapixel sensor that can give you professional looking shots, with proper setup and lighting you may be surprised. Before spending a lot of money on a DSLR it may be worth taking a close look at what your smartphone can do.
2. Lighting – Good lights are very important when photographing products. A good light kit should include at least two lights, tripods and diffusers that are attachable.
3. Tripod – Photographing a product will require taking a longer exposure. Trying to do this hand held will only give you a blurry image that will not be acceptable. Make sure and purchase a good tripod that will fit your camera specifications.
4. Setting Up Your Product Shot – many product shots are done using a continuous background in a white or light gray color. It is easy to set up and will give you a professional look to your photograph. All you need is a roll of craft paper, metal clamps and a sturdy table. Take the paper and attach it to the wall. Roll it down from the wall to the table creating a smooth curve in the back. Put your product on the paper where it comes in contact with your table. Now is the time to adjust you lighting to create the look you are after.
5. What Aperture should be used? If you are using a DSLR camera it will have an aperture setting that you can manually set. Using a wide aperture will give your product shot a narrow depth of field that will make your photo look more professional. A good setting to try would be F1.8 or F/2. Your camera will need to be set to manual to make this adjustment.
6. Watch Out For Shadows. Try to avoid any over saturated backlighting and other setups that can create shadows on the product. It is always best to keep the lights on the same side of the product as your camera.