Thursday, October 13, 2011

It’s all about the lighting

Well, at least in product photography it is.

I’ve often been told, when people look at my photography, that I have a natural eye for it. At first, I had to ask what exactly they meant by that. I seem to have a very appealing & creative way to compose my images. Wow, how cool is that? 

I take a lot of my pictures, with something in mind. Sometimes, I take them knowing I want to be able to put words on them somewhere. So, I make sure to leave space for that when I compose the image before I click that shutter. Other times it may be just a nice composed shot, no cropping or words needed. Or, I may want to make some shape out of the image later; whether that is a panoramic shot, or maybe a square shot.

At any rate, composition is a big deal in photography. But, so is lighting. Lighting can play a huge part in landscape shots, in close up shots of anything, & in people shots. But I want to talk about product shots today.

I have found over the years that I have been doing product shots, that for me, natural light works best & is the easiest to use. I know there are many ways to take pictures with artificial lighting. I never was great at doing any of that. I love how natural light gives things such a nice clean, clear & color correct look. And I didn’t need to buy any special equipment for working with natural light. All I need is a place to set up, near good light.

My Studio in the living room
Using natural can present challenges. There are a couple factors that need to come together to take good natural light pictures.
A bright or sunny day
Time to take pictures while the light is right
Seems simple enough. But what if you don’t live in an area that gets tons of sunshine? Or you work all day & need to wait until the weekend & the weekend is rainy? Or any other off the wall or real world reason.

Taken w/above setup
I am able to be home during the day, almost every day. So I can see when the light will hit my photo area best. And this changes as the suns path across the sky changes with the seasons. I want the bright light, but not the direct streaming sunlight. The direct light for most things I photograph, is too harsh & bright. The bright light before the sun streams in & onto the products is best.

Taken w/ above setup
Try working with this bright light next time you need to take product shots. I think you will be pleasantly surprised at your results.


Garden Gate Botanicals said...

Love this post! Very helpful! Thanks!

TexasEagle said...

Great tips! Very helpful information!

Portable Graffiti said...

LOVE LOVE your studio!

Raige Creations said...

yes, your studio looks great! I have a problem with the harsh direct seen in some of my photos. It is hard to find a spot with bright light without it being too hot, or harsh. And the room with the best light has the birds in it...not ideal. I usually just go outside. thanks for the tips tho.

Anonymous said...

Like the post, Your blog is very nice as well.

Nicole's Visions said...

Thanks for the wonderful comments everyone!