What Equipment Do I Need for Product Photography?
It wasn’t too long ago when product photography was a bit beyond the “average” retailer’s price range. Back then, having products shot could set you back a considerable amount of money.
These days, some phones can produce top-quality images when you use the right angle or set up. Although these gadgets won’t come close to the best camera for product photography, they will make the venture more accessible. Plus, they give a huge pay-off despite costing next to nothing.
One thing’s for sure; blurry photos will never entice consumers. Today, we’ll look at the kind of gear needed for taking great product shots and the ways to use them to convince customers to give your products a shot.
What to Consider Before Getting Started
A few things to keep in mind before starting your product photography journey are:
Final Product’s Look
Is the product going to end up plastered on a billboard, thus requiring a camera with humongous megapixels? Or, will the image be posted on a website, meaning it doesn’t have to be any larger than a thousand pixels? Being clear on this beforehand let’s you use the bare minimum gear required for the venture and still produce high-quality photographs.
What Are You Shooting?
Aside from how you envision the final image to turn out, you should also consider what you’re photographing. In particular, you should look at whether the surface of the product is matte or reflective. That’s because one would entail a very different setup from the other.
If you’re thinking of shooting a ton of stuff, you might need an entire wagon to accommodate all your gear. On the contrary, if you’ll mostly be taking photos of clothing, you won’t need nearly as much equipment. You can always enhance your images afterward with the help of various product retouching techniques.
Product Photography Gear
For this particular piece, we’ll go over the set of items required for photographing a range of subjects. You want to make sure your starter kit contains the following pieces of equipment:
It could be a real camera or a camera phone; take your pick. These days, there’s very little difference between these two where beginner photography is concerned. With either device, as long as it’s of good quality, you should find it easy to capture a crisp shot of your product.
Nonetheless, with a smartphone camera, things become just that bit easier for a newbie. That’s because it doesn’t let you stress about technical settings like ISO or white balance. In case the settings really need adjustments, you should be able to figure it out quickly enough without getting a headache.
The more you get the hang of product photography, the more you’ll favor digital cameras over smartphones. These gadgets have more features than phones, giving you more control over your shots. Just make sure to do enough research; otherwise, you might end up cursing these features instead of lauding them.
Not even the fanciest camera in the world can take the shots you want if it’s not stable. Lack of stability leads to blurry shots, which is especially frustrating when it happens with an expensive camera.
No matter what camera you use, pair it with a tripod. This reliable, three-legged stand should hold your device steady while you shoot. You should particularly consider it when shooting with low ISO since this tends to create more blur from being paired with a low shutter speed. With your trusty tripod, you should be able to reduce both blur and pic graininess using low ISO.
As much as we would like to say the sun is sufficient, it really isn’t sometimes. While there’s no doubting how great it is as a light source, you don’t really have much control over it.
Even if you shoot during daylight, there might be several factors to contend with. For instance, there’s the clouds, which could prevent you from getting the right amount of light for your shoot. Lack of clouds and too much sunlight can be a problem, too.
Artificial lighting is safer and hands control back over to your side. With this kind of lighting, you can capture crisp shots more consistently.
A white backdrop brings more clarity to a subject’s tiniest details because of how it reflects light onto it. And because it’s a solid shade, you don’t need to put in much work retouching it, which should make the editing process a bit easier.
Time To Get Started!
Now that you know what gear pieces are needed to shoot product photos, nothing can stop you from starting your venture today. Oh, and don’t forget to pick out a really good editing software to ensure your final output is as eye-catching as possible.