Monday, October 12, 2009

DIY: Product Photography Table

Have you ever wanted to try out product photography? Have you ever wondered how they did the lighting or if there was a cheap and easy way to try it for yourself? Well, I did. My girlfriend wanted to create a sort of online store and I needed to shoot the products she was planning to sell. I was able to do it and I would say quite successfully.

Over the weekend I search the internet for a way to build my own table for product photography; yes DIY. What I found was that a lot used PVC pipes for their frame. However, I wanted to try it out first. I wanted to find a cheaper and a less permanent solution. So what did I use? I used a netted laundry bag which I bought for Php40 and a meter of white cloth which costs Php26/meter. The cloth, by the way, is Alpha Gena. I'm just not too sure if that's spelled right. I also bought a 22-watt energy saving light; it would be better if you'd get a stronger bulb. I already have a 10-watt light that I will use as a fill light. And lastly, a black cartolina which serves as the floor and the backdrop. To better illustrate what I did, check out the sketch bellow. I will detail what I did in the paragraphy following the image.

So what I did is I cut out the side where it is colored red and I stitched a cutout white cloth on the green sides. Do note that the right side of the basket is also covered with white cloth but is not shown in the image; that is, if you're facing the red colored side. I placed the light source on the left and right side of the basket. Again, assuming that the red side is the front. The white cloth that covers the left and right sides will serve to diffuse the light. Without diffusing the light, you would get a harsh shadow and a very stron reflection especially if you're working on a shiny surface. Check out the image below for the actual image:

Yes I know, there's still a lot of work to be done. But. this is just a rough test. So, I used the 22-watt light on the left and then the 10-watt light on the right to fill in on the shadows. Check out the images below for some of the results:

If there'd come a need for me to shoot more for this type of photography, my plan would be to get a stronger flood light as the main light and I'll probably use the 22-watt bulb as the fill. Also, I may even try of using the PVC pipe solution which should be a lot sturdier that what I currently have.

I'm not an expert. Like you, I'm just learning photography and I share what I learn with you. Do you have any suggestions to make this setup or the results better? Or, do you have some questions? Feel free to use comment.