How to take professional looking product pictures?

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by zak88lx, May 4, 2005.

  1. zak88lx

    zak88lx TPF Noob!

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    Hello,

    I'm trying to take pictures of the audio/video equipment in my home
    (VCR, DVD player, A/V Receiver, TV, etc.)

    My goal is to take large high-res pictures of each item so that I can refer to the pictures instead of having to physically look at the back of each unit.

    The look I'm trying to achieve is similar to an advertisement or catalog picture with an all white background and high detail.

    I have provided a link showing an example of what I hope to achieve:Sample Photo

    I'm currently using an Olympus D-550 Zoom with 3.0 megapixels and a tripod.
    I have tried taking many pictures but the end result is quite dissapointing.

    Any tips or suggestions would really be appreciated.

    Thanks,
    Zak
     
  2. Rob

    Rob TPF Noob!

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    Switch the camera into spot focus mode first of all to ensure that you're going to focus on the plane of the back. You may need to go into macro mode if the object is less then 1.5m away.

    Make sure there is plenty of natural light - ideally shoot with a window behind you.

    Use a tripod and the remote shutter release.

    Set the DOF as high as you can - f22.

    Use the lens zoomed out as far as it will go.

    Then you should be fine!

    Rob
     
  3. mentos_007

    mentos_007 The Freshmaker!

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    this pictures looks posprocessed... somebody just masked the whole background and pasted the object on a white background.

    remember not to use on-built flash or a bulb light
     
  4. KevinR

    KevinR TPF Noob!

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    If I where to set something up at a home to shoot on a budget, this what I would do.

    1. Get a background, like a big poster board or something.
    2. Get a few 500w work lights froma home improvement store. Cost around 12-15 bucks apiece.
    3. Set up on a table with your background up.
    4. Set lights around 3ft away from subject aiming them on either side crossing the light at the point of the subject.
    5. Set up your camera on the tripod and shoot.

    This should give enough light to get rid of shadows and really make the details stand out. This generally is my makeshift still life set-up on a budget.
     
  5. Contra|Brett|

    Contra|Brett| TPF Noob!

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    I agree with KevinR, but instead of being close, put your camera on a tripod, and put it as far back as you can whil'st zooming is as far as the camera can go. This will give you a flatter picture.
     
  6. zak88lx

    zak88lx TPF Noob!

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    Thanks for all the great replies!

    I plan on attempting Kevin's setup tonight but I have a couple of questions.

    1.) What ISO should I be using, my choices are:
    (Auto, 100, 200, 300 & 400)

    2.) What camera mode should I use, my choices are:
    (Auto, Self Portrait, Portrait, Night Scene, Landscape, Landscape+Portrait & Macro mode)

    Thanks,
    Zak
     
  7. Digital Matt

    Digital Matt alter ego: Analog Matt

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    Use ISO 100 for the least amount of noice. If you use landcape mode, it will probably try and give you the most depth of field, ensuring that everything is clearly focused and readable.
     
  8. zak88lx

    zak88lx TPF Noob!

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    I just finished setting up my white backdrop and tried some test photos using a walkman as a model.
    I'm taking TIF photos at 1984 x 1488 pixels which are approx 9MB each.
    I'm using 100 for ISO, landscape mode and full zoom with two 500 watt halogens for lighting.
    The pictures actually turned out much better then I expected, I'm going to try for more light next time.

    Here's a smaller sample in jpg format.
    [​IMG]

    I have a few settings on my camera which I'm not familiar with:

    "WB" (auto, sun, clouds, bulb, flourescent)
    "S" (normal, soft, hard)
    "C" (normal, high, low)

    What should I have these set to?

    Thanks again,
    Zak
     
  9. maxbennett

    maxbennett TPF Noob!

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    WB=White balance - this is one thing on a point-and-shoot that I'd leave on auto.
    S=Shadows? I have no idea.
    C=Not even a clue.
     
  10. triggerhappy

    triggerhappy TPF Noob!

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    S = sharpening.
    C = Probably contrast
    - No right or wrong answers with these ones. Just play around and see what works best.

    I noticed a definate line in your background. You can reduce this by bending the card and so giving yourself a curve rather then a corner.
     

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