How Do You Shoot a Product?

Table of Contents
    Add a header to begin generating the table of contents

    If a picture is worth a thousand words, then an eye-catching picture of a product is worth a thousand times as many visits to a website.

    Product photography can become an asset to the eCommerce website strategy you choose to implement. One survey found that among people who have access to the internet, 51% prefer to shop online, and it's likely that this subset of consumers will continue to expand.

    But this also means that 49 percent of people might still feel more comfortable purchasing certain things in a store, where they can see, touch, and try out the product before handing over their money.

    E-convenience commerce's isn't everything to every customer; being able to browse merchandise while sitting on the couch in the living room is just one of the many factors that contribute to the success of an online storefront.

    You need to provide your audience with photos of your products that are not only clear but also captivating if you want to reach the 51 percent of people who say they prefer shopping online. If you don't, these visitors aren't likely to have confidence in your products, which is confidence they could get by going into a store and trying the item on for themselves.

    However, taking photographs of products is not as easy as pointing and shooting. Even the most fundamental goods require the appropriate apparatus, lighting, and space in order to generate lovely images that can convince customers to make a purchase on the product page itself.

    Don't worry; the number of items on your shopping list is significantly lower than you may believe. There are some things that you already own! The following is a manageable list of tips and tools to get you started, along with actual examples of product photos that demonstrate how to put this advice into practise.

    Not only are product images a testament to the quality of your wares, but they also function as windows into your eCommerce store, thereby creating two things that are absolutely necessary:

    • Transparency & Trust
    • When consumers look at a product page, they are searching for evidence of the product's value and quality.
    • Their first impression is formed by the images, which creates a tipping point that determines whether or not they will continue browsing and ultimately make a purchase.
    • In this guide, we will teach you how to take pictures that:
    • Enhance the value that your customers bring to you over their lifetime.
    • We will also discuss how to streamline the process of creating photos in order to save you both time and money.
    • Keep in mind that in order to create polished and professional product photos, you do not require a large budget at all.

    What Is Product Photography?

    Product photography makes use of a variety of photographic techniques in order to present products in an appealing manner and encourage potential customers to purchase particular goods.

    Product photography is an essential component of both online and offline advertising, particularly when selling products directly to end users through mediums such as company websites, catalogues, brochures, magazine advertisements, and billboards.

    Now that we have that out of the way, let's look at the reasons why images are so vital.

    Why Photography Increases Conversions

    How Do You Shoot a Product?

    Visual information accounts for ninety percent of all information that is transmitted to our brain. Visual elements, not written copy, are what initially capture the attention of website visitors, regardless of how sophisticated the site may be.

    Photos play a significant role in the deliberation and choice-making process of consumers, and as a result, they ultimately determine conversion and retention rates.

    When it comes to making that all-important first impression, the quality of a product photo directly reflects the image of your brand.

    To make the most of their first impression, you should present images that are polished and professional and that evoke the maximum amount of engagement possible. Your photographs will be your most treasured wedding keepsake. Not sure where to start when it comes to looking for your wedding photographer of choice?

    Quality Visuals Enhance Every Buyer Touchpoint.

    Images are considered extremely important by 93% of consumers when making purchasing decisions. Your product's perceived value and quality are reflected in the photographs you choose to use.

    They address your audience specifically, making the content on your product page as well as the rest of your site more approachable.

    Consider the case of Naturally Curly's, for instance. They provide stunning images of common, everyday products, which often elevates the perceived coolness and appeal of the products.

    Have a look at the pictures of the product that are provided below. How trustworthy and well-kept do they appear to be? To reiterate, you do not need a large budget to create photos of your products that are polished and professional.

    Images Are a Key Element of Branding.

    Every decision that your company makes, including the following, should revolve around your brand.

    Your posts on various social media.
    All of your marketing efforts, including website updates

    And the images you use serve as the driving force behind your brand. They are the first to attract customers' attention, establish a sense of trust, and encourage further investigation from potential buyers.

    Everything in an image, from its quality to its subject matter to the colour scheme and saturation levels, should speak in a voice that is consistent and resonates with the audience you are trying to reach.

    Photos are one of the most important tools to use in the process of cultivating long-term relationships with one's clientele, which should be your primary focus.

    Product Photography Tips for Beginners

    There is a good chance that you do not have much time to study the art of photography because of all of the time and effort you put into optimising your Google Shopping data feed and writing Amazon product descriptions that convert well. Create lasting memories through your Yarra Valley wedding photography that will be cherished forever. 

    As a result, to get things started, I'll share with you five essential tips for getting started with product photography.

    Use Proper Lighting

    Let's begin with the lighting for the product photography. Without the right lighting, neither your product nor your background will look the way it does in real life.

    A white background that is not illuminated will not look white in the photograph; rather, it will look grey.

    Lighting for product photography can be done in either a studio or outdoors using either artificial or natural light.

    Which setup you choose to use will be determined in large part by the product you are photographing, the purpose of the photo, and the platform on which you are advertising it.

    Natural lighting is an excellent choice for taking product photographs that include people, clothing, and edible items. Photos that appear natural are also an excellent choice for sharing on social media platforms like Instagram.

    If you are taking the photographs inside, you will want to position your product so that it is facing a window in order to make the most of the natural light that is available to you.

    On the other hand, you should definitely take pictures of your products outside if you have the opportunity. The early morning and late afternoon hours, when the sun is still present but not as intense, are the best times to carry out this activity.

    Days with a few clouds in the sky are also preferable. If you take pictures of your shoe collection at noon, when the sun is at its highest point in the sky, you will notice that there is a lot of glare in the images.

    On the other hand, artificial product photography lighting is preferable if your product is primarily used indoors (for example, cookware), features small details (for example, artwork), or is being sold on Amazon and Google Shopping.

    You will be relieved to learn that overcoming your fear of light can be accomplished by simply building a basic studio setup and becoming familiar with a few fundamentals.

    It might be intimidating to use artificial lighting for product photography, but if you want to advertise on Amazon or Google Shopping, you have no choice but to do so.

    Use a Tripod

    Although tripods may seem like a piece of technical equipment that is unnecessary or nerdy, using one can make a significant improvement in the sharpness and quality of the photographs you take of your products. And neither are they necessarily difficult to use nor prohibitively expensive!

    Tripods are indispensable stands that prevent your camera from becoming shaken due to your shaky hand. By utilising a tripod, you can ensure a reduction in blur, which is essential if you want the photographs you take of your products to have a professional and high-quality appearance.

    There are many tripods available on the market in a variety of price ranges for every kind of camera that exists, so it doesn't matter if you have an expensive DSLR or a straightforward iPhone. You can get one for your camera by going to If you want your product photos to look better, it is unquestionably worthwhile to spend the additional minute or so setting up a tripod.

    Shoot for the Edit

    Have you ever stayed up late to write a paper and thought to yourself, "I can just edit this in the morning." even though you were only half awake? The next morning comes, and you realise that your initial draught was so sloppy that it will take you longer to edit it than it would have been to just throw it away and start over. You are forced to redo the entire assignment.

    This is what happens to photographers who are too lazy to edit their photos. You are mistaken if you believe that you can quickly throw together some shoddy product photographs and then use Photoshop to make them look professional.

    Even though editing photos is a skill that can have a significant bearing on the quality of a product photo, there is a limit to how far these edits can take the photo. Consider the process of editing as making minute adjustments to a work of art that is already stunning in its own right.

    This is a problem for you if you need to change the background or completely crop something out of the image. When photographing your product, you should strive to take the shots with the editing in mind.

    With this frame of mind, you will take pictures with the knowledge that you intend to make only minor edits to the picture in order to improve it without fundamentally altering it. Because of this, the end result will be much more satisfying to have.

    Take a Basic Photo Editing Class

    Even though editing should be kept to a minimum in the vast majority of situations, it is still an essential skill to have in your product photography toolkit. Making a few simple edits, such as adjusting the saturation or even masking small flaws within your product photograph, can have a significant impact on the final product. These types of edits can be done in Adobe Photoshop.

    The challenge with editing is that there are so many different things that can be done with it that it can be quite overwhelming if you attempt to do it on your own without having any kind of formal training in it.

    In order to avoid becoming completely flummoxed while attempting to edit your product photographs, you will want to acquire some foundational knowledge from professionals. This is especially important if you are going to be using a tool like Photoshop.

    Don't worry if you don't want to spend a lot of money on a course that teaches you how to edit photos if you don't want to! Get on YouTube right away. You can find a multitude of free tutorials on the internet that will teach you the fundamentals of the editing software that you select.

    Eighty-three percent of Instagram users agree, according to insights that were made public by Facebook in February 2019, that the platform makes it easier for them to learn about new goods and services. In addition, 79 percent of Instagram users said they looked up additional information about a product or service after seeing it on the platform.

    Advertisers for e-commerce platforms absolutely need to be on Instagram. Here are five additional suggestions for taking effective photographs of products.

    Take Inspiration from Brands You Love

    It is never a waste of time to search for motivation in the work of others. You probably already have in mind a few different brands that you particularly adore. Take a look at the product photography they've used and ask yourself how you could adapt a similar shot or technique to the products you sell.

    Take for instance the fact that you run a women's clothing store in your community. The best way to make sure those moments are preserved for posterity is with a professionally made wedding film. Get in touch with us at Wild Romantic Photography right away to talk about our wedding film videography services.

    You should go on Instagram, look up some of your favourite women's clothing brands, and think about what you like about the product photos those brands post. The product is brought out in focus by the use of a monochromatic colour scheme and a background with few distractions.

    Get to Know the Rule of Thirds

    Because of its usefulness, the rule of thirds is covered in numerous art classes as well as the majority of introductory photography courses.

    This rule instructs you to imagine your canvas as being divided into nine equal parts, as shown in the following illustration:

    The purpose of the "rule of thirds" was to provide artists with a tool that would assist them in developing compositions that were well-balanced.

    It is also helpful to determine where the focus of your work should be placed, specifically on your product. Your objective is to position your product in such a way that it follows the lines and, ideally, it should be located at the point where two of the lines intersect.

    According to a number of studies, when people look at pictures, their eyes naturally gravitate to one of the intersection points rather than the centre of the frame. [Citation needed] Instead of fighting against this naturally occuring way of perceiving an image, applying the rule of thirds actually works with it.

    Use Simple Props

    Do not try to do too much with the photography props for the product you are photographing! Keep in mind that the subject of each photograph of the product should be the product itself.

    Having said that, braces aren't always a bad thing, and they can actually help make things look better for your audience. The question now is, how do you choose which props to use? When it comes to braces, err on the side of caution: keep them straightforward, in line with the colour scheme, and pertinent to the action taking place or the product you are selling.

    Take Multiple Shots from Varying Angles

    If you have a relatively large line of products that you need to photograph, the temptation to only shoot one or two of each product before moving on to the next may be strong. However, this will not help with shooting the footage for the edit in any way.

    Providing your customers with an accurate depiction of your product can be accomplished by shooting it multiple times from a variety of vantage points. In addition to this, doing so will assist in providing you with options when it comes time to edit, so you won't be left wondering, "Should we redo this one entirely?"

    The versatility of product photography lies in the fact that multiple shots can be taken, from which the most effective one can then be selected.

    Put Your Product in Context

    Your potential customers need to be able to picture themselves making use of the product you offer. If a potential customer looks at the photos of your product on your website and has trouble visualising how the item would benefit her, why would she buy it?

    Before someone with a limited amount of discretionary income makes a purchase, they typically need to be convinced that the item will enhance their day-to-day life in some way before making the purchase.

    When you take certain products out of their natural environment, it can be difficult to imagine how you might use them. For instance, a person who is looking for a couch to furnish his new apartment is probably not going to buy one that is advertised as simply sitting against a white background because they can't picture themselves using it.

    Don't Be Afraid to Use Your Smartphone Camera.

    This is the part of the article in which I am supposed to persuade you to purchase a high-end camera that has a resolution of 50 megapixels (MP) and a screw-on lens that is 100 millimetres in diameter. On the other hand, I won't be doing that.

    If you already own a camera that fits this description, make sure you use it to its full potential. On the other hand, taking pictures of many different kinds of products with a smartphone is perfectly fine.

    It was difficult to capture critical visual elements of products where detail was important because some of the earliest smartphones had cameras that operated on less than 4 megapixels.

    However, more recent smartphones like the iPhone 7, Google Pixel, and Samsung Galaxy S4 have lenses with resolutions of 12MP and 13MP, as well as a variety of "temperature" settings that allow you to optimise your photographs for the various types of light in which you may take them.

    Shoot from a Tripod for Photo Consistency

    Before I begin to explain tripods, I feel obligated to begin with a cardinal rule, which is that you should never try to aim your phone's lens towards the subject by propping it up against something stable.

    It is just far too easy for this makeshift setup to shift around while you are shooting, which will result in inconsistencies in the appearance of your photographs. Be sure that the positioning of your camera does not shift during the course of the shoot if it is resting, for example, on a stack of books.

    When you only need a few product photos for your eCommerce website, it won't hurt anything if you hold the camera yourself and take the pictures. However, as your company expands and you take pictures of an increasing number of products, it may become challenging to maintain a consistent orientation of the products in each photo if you are shooting handheld.

    You're going to need a tripod if you want to maintain uniformity across all of your products. And, to our great fortune, the cost of purchasing one is no longer the massive, business-scale expenditure it was in the past.

    When taking pictures with your smartphone, you'll need one of the following accessories in addition to one of the following types of tripods:

    Traditional vs. Flexible Mobile Grip

    The adapter wraps around the sides of your smartphone and has threads that allow it to be screwed into either type of tripod. This enables you to control the camera both when the screen of the phone is facing away from you and when it is facing towards you.

    As soon as you have determined which mount you will require, place it in front of your product, and think about placing three pieces of tape on the ground to mark where you would like each leg of your tripod to remain throughout the duration of the shoot.

    Natural Light Vs. Artificial Light: Choose One

    How Do You Shoot a Product?

    Never undervalue the impact that different kinds of light can have on the quality of the photographs you take of your products. Buyers should keep in mind that the best way to examine an item is in person, because this allows them to see everything they need to see before making a purchase. When all that website visitors have to go on is a photo, having the right lighting arrangement helps you reveal those crucial product features that are decision-making factors.

    It's possible that a single lighting arrangement won't work for all of the products; a lighting configuration that enhances the appearance of some products might make others look less appealing. You have the option of using either natural or artificial light as your primary source of illumination:

    Natural Light

    Simply put, when people talk about natural light, they mean sunlight. Because the sun casts a more extensive and gentler range of light than, for example, a lamp shining directly on the product, this type of lighting is also referred to as "soft light." Product photos for online retailers benefit greatly from being taken in natural light if,

    The product was either photographed outside or is designed to be used outside.
    A person may use the product, wear it on their body, or strike another with it (people tend to look better in natural light).
    You are putting more of an emphasis on the product's surroundings as opposed to the product's individual characteristics.

    Artificial Light

    Candles, fire, and most commonly light bulbs are examples of artificial sources of illumination. This type of light is also known as "hard light" due to the fact that it creates a softer surface that is both smaller and more focused. Products that have physical details that need to be highlighted in order to impress an online shopper can benefit from this particular kind of light.

    Stick to using just one kind of light for each photograph, whether it be natural or artificial. This is the recommended practise.

    Adding natural light to an image that was lit artificially can make a product that is supposed to look sharp appear softer, and adding artificial light to a photo that was lit naturally can make a product that is supposed to appear soft appear sharper. You don't want anything to stand in your way, do you?

    Fill or Bounce Your Light to Soften Shadows

    You will need to lessen the shadows of any potential hard light casts on the opposite end of a product, and this will be the case whether you use natural light or artificial light. There are three different approaches to take here:

    Fill Light

    Add an additional source of light that is not as powerful as your primary source of illumination.

    This additional light is referred to as your fill light, and it is used as a counterbalance to soften the natural shadow produced behind an object by your leading light. To accomplish this, position your fill light in the opposite direction of your leading light, so that your product is illuminated by both of the lights.

    Flashbulb Bounce Card

    Bounce cards, also known as reflector cards, are small cards that "reflect" or "bounce" the leading light back onto the surface beneath your product, thereby reducing the number of shadows cast by the product.

    The light from the camera's flash can be diffused using certain bounce cards that attach to the flashbulb of a professional camera lens. This card directs a softer light onto the subject from above your set, rather than directly at it, allowing you to avoid casting long shadows behind the thing you're trying to photograph.

    Standalone Bounce Card

    When taking photos with a smartphone, you cannot use a flashbulb bounce card because you do not have access to a physical flash to which the card can be attached. Make sure that your standalone bounce card is facing in the opposite direction of your primary light source instead.

    This bounce card can effectively replace your fill light if you are just starting out with product photography. Fill light softens the harsh light that is produced by the camera flash or lamp that is directed towards the front of your product.

    Your goal, regardless of the type of light counter you choose to use, should be to minimise shadows while simultaneously drawing attention to the aspects of your product that give website visitors a reason to find it valuable. When shot in just the right way, you'll notice a significant difference:

    Use a Sweep or Portrait Mode to Emphasize the Product

    There is no one correct way to position your product, lights, or bounce cards; rather, the optimal placement of these elements can shift drastically depending on the background.

    However, you should not select a location based on what will be the simplest to create. The way in which you want potential customers to perceive your product after viewing it online should be reflected in Grounds.

    Think about whether you'd prefer a white background or one that's more dynamic and reflective of the real world first. Each one can be accomplished in a straightforward manner.

    White Background: Sweep

    When working with white backgrounds, setting up a table against white drywall is not the only option available. Even the camera on a smartphone can detect unsightly marks on a white wall that are invisible to the naked eye but are picked up by a camera. Make use of a sweep if you want your background to be completely white and free of any marks or corners.

    A sweep is a large sheet of bendable paper that acts as a surface beneath your product and then curves up to form a white wall behind the product. Its bottom acts as the surface beneath your product.

    The curve of the sweep cannot be seen by the camera, which highlights important product details and enables the item to receive a website visitor's undivided attention. The following is a side-by-side comparison that demonstrates why a sweep is important:

    Real-World Background: Portrait Mode

    When photographing products that have a specific use or are being modelled by a person, dynamic, real-world backgrounds are very appealing. You saw an example of this earlier in this guide with the picture of the briefcase, which was shot against such a background.

    However, it is simple for a real-world background to take the attention away from the subject of the photograph, which results in it being unclear which item in the picture you are trying to sell.

    Portrait mode is a picturesque setting that is available on most professional cameras and also on many new smartphones. It allows you to give your product depth and emphasis by using this setting. This adjustment softens the background, which enables the context of the product to be understood without drawing attention away from the product itself.

    Shoot a Variety of Images

    The final piece of advice I have for you concerning eCommerce photography is to take more than one picture of each product. You should take a variety of photos on your website to simulate the in-store experience that your customers have, which includes looking at, holding, using, and even trying on different items of merchandise.

    You should take pictures of the item of clothing both by itself, with it spread out on a white surface, and also on a mannequin whose colour is different from the colour of the product you are photographing. For example, if you are shooting clothing, you should do this.

    Then, for additional photos, have the garments modelled on a person. This will enable you to take pictures of the product from a variety of poses and perspectives because the model will be moving around.

    Don't feel like you have to rush out and buy every piece of advice and piece of equipment all at once.

    Applying these product photography tips in stages will allow you to determine which aspects of your shop's appearance contribute most to its overall appeal. As your photography skills improve, you should reconsider your strategy.

    Should I Invest in Professional Product Photography?

    Let's say you have the money for it, of course.

    When it comes to merchandising and marketing your online brand, some of the most important things you can do are take photos of your products both on their own and while they are being used. Your product photography needs to do the trick because customers cannot touch or see your product in person before making a purchase.

    FAQs About Shooting A Product