5 Product Photography Tips for a Serious Photographer Like You
Have you ever tried dining in a restaurant where the menu is in full text? All things you saw were words and figures, no photo? If you did, I’m sure that you found it difficult to select your order, especially if you are not familiar with the food and beverages listed on the menu.
This is only one of the problems that product photography wanted to address.
The Role of Product Photography in Business
In 2011, eBay has US$ 11.651 billion revenue and US$ 3.229 billion net income while Amazon.com has US$ 48.07 billion revenue and US$ 631 million net income. eBay.com is an online auction and shopping website while Amazon.com is the world’s largest online retailer.
On these two websites, there are multiple of product models available for one type of item. Say for example, you are trying to search for a ‘product photography lighting’ on eBay; there are about 20 items will come out on the search result.
Searching the same item ( product photography lighting) on Amazon.com, you can see 16 products on the first page out of 2,437 results. Imagine how that large figure affects your choice.
On the search result page, the first thing that captures the eye is the photo.
In this case, the best product photo has the highest chance to be clicked. If the it is supported with reasonable price and good description, the item will have the chance to be purchased.
This means that to have product photo is not enough. It should be GOOD photo that shouts, “Buy me!”
What else good product photography can offer? Let us put it in a list.
- It captures attention.
- It builds a good impression for the product.
- It suggests better quality.
- It overpowers the necessity of explanation.
- It develops strong brand.
- It delivers a lasting message.
- It sells products.
Product photographs are being used online and offline sell products. No arguments on that. Come in different styles and presentation, they are found if different marketing materials like brochure, poster, flier, quotation, catalogue, banner, restaurant menu, website and more.
Product Photography Tips
Since you now know the importance and usage of product photography, let me share with you some tips to produce good product photographs.
1. Minimize or eliminate distractions.
Identify and remove any distractions that may be found in the background.
Like for example when shooting a car in a street setting, identify any distractive elements like other cars and dogs then determine how these destructions will be removed from the final picture.
SEE ALSO: 7 Key Elements of Product Photography
Special attention however has to be given to other objects in the background that may form appropriate and add impact to the product.
2. Zoom in to frame the unique features of the product.
It is not in all cases that all parts of the vehicle are seen in the picture. Decide on a particular area of the vehicle that you would wish to focus on. Better yet, ask the person whom hired you or your client which part of the product does her or she need to have a close-up shot.
This is possibly the product’s area of strength that makes it stand out from the rest.
This unique strength could be the patented part, an ergonomic knob, only one of its kind design and other innovation.
3. Use props and models to boost the USP – not to divert attention.
Props and models are great rivals of the product when it comes to getting the attention of the viewer. They can make or break the salability of the product.
One of your goals as product photographer is to know the Unique Selling Proposition (USP) of the product and use props and models to showcase this advantage into visual representation, the photo.
Some of the techniques being used to achieve this purpose are:
- Putting the props out-of-focus,
- Using less props (2 or 3 items),
- Directing models’ eyes to the product,
- Putting product at the eye-level of the model (for close-up shots),
- Using subdued colors for costume in case of non-fashion products, and
- Subdued make-up for fashion items.
Going back to our first example, the car, other elements like people, pets and other items can be included in the area of focus to ensure the subtle message is conveyed. A child sitting comfortably on one of the seats can be a great way to convey a message about the comfort and safety of the car.
4. Achieve a perfect white for a seamless white background shot.
This is very important for photos that will be used for websites and 360° rotational product images.
The white balance setting of your camera and the background play an important role on this part, but if you find it so difficult to achieve a perfect white, which is I think impossible to achieve using mere camera setting, you have touch the photo on an image editing application like Photoshop.
5. Do not start unless everything is ready.
I am sure that you that the first step in undertaking any photography session requires the presence of the principal object. Yes, because you cannot start a car photography session without the car itself.
Identifying the type of product and acquiring it is a vital first step. If the item is mall then you can just shoot in on a tabletop, but if it is big like a car or a cabinet, you must find a location which is appropriate for it.
The appropriate equipment and accessories are also important to achieve better photos – like macro lens for jewelry and tent for reflective products like stainless steel ware.
Other Recommended Posts:
- How To Shoot Cylindrical Products in Better and Attractive Ways
- Stainless Steel Photography – How to Shoot Highly Reflective Wares
- Glass and Crystal Photography Lighting Tips and Ideas