In Today’s Day and Age, Social Media has become an integral part of everybody’s daily life. People use social media all through the day as the first thing they do while waking up and the last thing they go before sleep is to use their phone.
Hence as a Brand, it is very important to create a presence on the Internet and build Brand Awareness amongst the general public.
To gain a presence on Social Media, Brands should focus on advertising their product/service by capturing creative photographs.
On the other hand, high-quality product photographs are ideal for e-commerce advertisements. Customers are always looking for an easy way to gain information about a product and it is said that 93% of them consider images to be an essential decision making factor while purchasing.
Hence, using this opportunity to give evidence about the quality and value of your brand should be a smart move.
But how do you put your brand out there?
The obvious answer to this is by having a professional product photoshoot.
But Product Photoshoots are easier said than done. A lot of factors come into picture like camera equipment, background, composition, lighting, and editing to get that perfect shot.
These factors vary from one product to another making product photography art in itself. But do not worry, this isn’t rocket science and we’ve got you sorted.
Go through our simple six product photography tips and techniques which will help you develop into a professional photographer. So let’s get started!
1. Choose the Right Camera
The most essential element to any Product Photoshoot is a Camera. There are dozens of Brands and tons of acronyms that might not even make sense. But to make things simple for you, look for the following settings in a camera for product photography.
- Choose the correct White Balance, preferably the same as the kelvin temperature of your lights.
- Do not go for a Wide-angle Lens. It will distort the product i.e., stretch the product, and makes it look wider.
- Always know the right Aperture for the right shot. Using a wide aperture like f2.8 or f4.5 will narrow down your depth of field which would leave parts of your product out of focus. While using a small aperture like f8 or f11 will give your image a wider depth of field, keeping the whole product crisp and in-focus.
- Most DSLR cameras have a dial with modes for Macro, Portrait, and Action Shots. Use these modes to your advantage while shooting
- However, if you have a smartphone with a great camera, you don’t need to worry about investing in a DSLR camera in case you’re just getting started.
2. A Plain White Background is the best background!
Have you ever asked yourself the objective of a product photoshoot?
What is it that you really want people to observe from your shots?
Isn’t it obvious that you want to grab the attention completely onto your product?
If you want to ensure that your product is the star of your photoshoot then having a plain white background is the right way to go. This will allow the product to shine amidst a clear and crisp background.
Though other light colors like pink, light blue, and yellow can be manageable, a color as simple as white will put all the attention only on your product which is the main objective of a photoshoot.
Using a bright color like red, orange, the violet will completely distract the attention of the product while also losing the shape of your product with the background.
Though boasting a plain background isn’t necessary if your objective is to upload the images on Social Media platforms and Websites, it is mandatory in case the product is to be advertised on e-commerce sites like Flipkart and Amazon.
It is a highly recommended practice in the industry which also enables the product to attain a professional look.
3. Lighting Setup
It is said that A White Background without a light source does not appear white in the photo, it looks grey.
Light is a major factor that defines the quality of an image. Setting up the right light source can be crucial in determining whether a visitor to your website buys your product or not. A lighting arrangement that displays all the crucial decision making details to the visitor, is deemed to be the perfect one.
There are basically two lighting techniques for a product photoshoot, one is natural light and the other is an Artificial Light.
– Natural Light:
Natural Light is nothing but sunlight. It is the easiest light source to obtain if you have a budget constraint and is absolutely free of cost.
Sunlight is also known to be a ‘soft light’ because the range of light is softer and larger when compared to the light of a lamp falling directly on the product.
Remember to keep your product near a large window so that the maximum amount of light falls on the product.
The best time to shoot using natural light is early in the morning and late in the afternoon before sunset for a simple reason being the sunlight is not very harsh during this time of the day.
Natural light also creates a natural shadow of the product which plays an important role in providing a sense of space while creating the shape of the product.
– Artificial Light:
If a product is to be used for Flipkart and Amazon Ads, then using artificial lights for the photoshoot is preferable. The Set up is made of two softbox lights generally placed on either side of the product.
The key light is the main source of light on the product and place the other light can be placed as the fill light or the backlight.
In case the light source is too harsh, you can always place a cloth or a white paper to diffuse the light. In addition to this, learn about the ISO, f/stop, shutter speed settings, and how to set the color balance on the camera.
4. Rule of Thirds and keep the product in context:
The Composition of an image decides whether the attention of the viewer is set on the product or not.
Hence following the rule of thirds can help you compose your shots better. It is a very simple technique of imagining your canvas into nine equal segments, like the below example.
Ideally, the object in focus should be placed on the line joining the two intersections on any side of the image.
It will help in creating a well-balanced composition in each piece on the canvas. The Human Eye is said to naturally observe one of the intersection points more than the center of the image and hence, following the rule is very vital.
Prospective Customers should be able to visualize themselves using the product which they view online and only then will they invest in the product.
Therefore it is very important that it is shown in such a way that makes the customer believe a product can change their life for good.
These lifestyle shots need a human element using the product in the shot which makes them perfect for marketing in platforms like social media, blog posts, and emails.
5. Shoot for the Edit:
Always aim to do minimal editing in Photoshop instead of throwing together a few hasty photographs and expecting photoshop to work its magic.
While editing software can make a notable impact on a photograph, relying completely on this software can only take you so far. They are meant to enhance and give small touch-ups to a photograph that is already beautiful.
If you are hoping to change the image completely by cropping things out or changing the backdrop of the photograph then your skills will only become sloppy.
By shooting for the edit, your skills will not only get enhanced but the time spent on the editing desk will also reduce drastically.
6. Take inspiration from videos:
Even though it is recommended to keep editing to a minimum, it’s a skill that can never be neglected.
Adding a touch of brightness, contrast, and saturation will yield a finished product while masking a few flaws can enhance the photograph.
Although having formal training in editing software like Photoshop can give you a headstart, there are plenty of tutorials online which will teach you everything from the basics without having to spend a penny.
In case you are starting off, you ought to have some basic knowledge about this software because there are tons of things that can be done while using them that you can end up overdoing it sometimes.
So simple head to YouTube and take Inspiration!