Is there a complete kit for product photography?
I'm looking into getting into product photography just for my own hobby collection items (small things like lens etc). I see there are kits out there that include lamps and tents etc. But is there a kit that does both black and white backdrop? Most of these tents are white. Also, is there a kit that can help me make the reflection? I'm not sure I need the lamps as I already have a few expensive speedlights and diffusers?
My advice starts with buy a copy of "Light Science and Magic" and study it.
For small products you can use continuous lighting. Continuous lighting has the advantage that you can "see the light" so you know exactly what the highlights and shadows will look like before you press the shutter button.
CFL lighting is cooler and more energy efficient than incandescent lighting but unless you are willing to spend the money on high CRI CFL bulbs made specifically for photography you can get some bad color shifts caused by the lumpy/spiky spectrum from "home lighting" CFL bulbs.
I suggest you start with cheap bell reflector shop lamps from your local home improvement store and some 100W incandescent light bulbs. Set you camera WB for incandescent and you should be good colors. Get a WB card and use it to nail your WB perfectly.
To diffuse these lights build simple frames of PVC piping and fixtures and cover them with white Dacron fabric. You can also use stretcher frames for paintings or needlework that you get at art supply stores.
Buy some wood and white tileboard to make a sync wall shooting stage. Bend the tileboard into a smooth curve with a flat floor and wall. Objects placed on the floor will have a nice reflection so they don't appear to be suspended in space and the background can easily be lit to go pure white.
Place any color of fabric on top the tileboard for colored backgrounds & floor. If you want pure black use velveteen fabric and suspend the object above the floor with monofiliment fishing line.
You can get some good ideas on DIY photography sites like these.
Living and loving it in Bangkok, Thailand. Canon 7D - See the gear list for the rest.
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