Light Modifiers for Product Photography

Started Mar 3, 2010 | Discussions thread
KEVZPHOTOS
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Re: Light Modifiers for Product Photography
In reply to h317, Mar 5, 2010

I've done studio still-life and product shots for a long time...and I've always preferred 'continuous' cool (ie: fluorescent) lighting over the strobe/flash approach...simply because there's no 'trial n error' involved...(ie: what you see is what you get) plus it's a lot easier to have complete control over glare/reflections, etc...and you don't have dial in, meter, and balance the different light sources used. Even back in the early 70's we built our own continuous lighting banks with FL strip tubes, MDF speaker board and cloth for diffusers Those were the days...well, at least we had Pink Floyd too

Here's a few examples:
http://kvincentphotography.ca/fooddrink
http://kvincentphotography.ca/designerflorals
http://kvincentphotography.ca/still-life

You have a 30" soft-box tent (which will suffice for small to medium sized subjects)...so to go with that 3-4 lights will be needed. Left & right side, above and behind. Underneath/below is also good for getting that 'suspended' look - but I wouldn't bother with that until you have some experience with this.

Daylight 5000K - 5600K FL bulbs are the ticket, and approx 600W (Tungsten eqiv) is required for each source. Once you get this kind of setup in place...it will be good to go for a whole range of different sized subjects. All you will need to do is move the light lights closer/further all depending upon the result you are seeing.

It's that simple.

For backgrounds....just shoot against some quality art card of your desired colour. It's better than velvet or cloth because card doesn't hold so much lint-specks/dust/flick/hair, etc....and it doesn't have to be perfectly clean anyways...coz one simply "enhances" and "cleans up" the background in NX2, CS4 or whatever, using the standard layers-mask techniques.

Concentrate on getting 'the subject' as perfect as possible, coz you can always change/alter the background or add a gradient, reflection layer, FX, etc later on in Photoshop.,

This kinda stuff:
http://kvincentphotography.ca/still-life/h10c422c9#h10c422c9
http://kvincentphotography.ca/still-life/h10c422c9#h3150f35

Your pics on the site are clean and reasonably clear...however, they come across as somewhat flat/sterile. You need to create more depth and introduce compositional elements that generate multi-dimentional points of interest, etc.

Hope this helps...

KEV

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