Is product photography possible w\ portrait studio equipment?

Discussion in 'Commercial/Product photography' started by Ygrazi, Dec 22, 2009.

  1. Ygrazi

    Ygrazi TPF Noob!

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    I was recently asked to do a job taking pictures of watches. Until now I only did portrait photography. Would I be able to take these pictures with my current equipment? I have a softbox, umbrellas, absb800, and a nikon speedlight.
    Do I need different equipment?
    Oh and I have a Nikon D200 and 50mm lens.
     
  2. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    I don't see why not.
     
  3. Overread

    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member Supporting Member

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    A lightbox would be a good addition to your setup:
    Strobist: How To: DIY $10 Macro Photo Studio

    That would give you a good way to control the lighting in the shot. As for the lens side it depends what sort of shots you want to get - have a try with a watch and the 50mm and see where you get. If you find that you need to get seriously closer (ie that you are cropping a lot away from the shot) you might consider extension tubes/macro diopters or a proper macro lens to let you focus closer.
     
  4. Ygrazi

    Ygrazi TPF Noob!

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    Where would I position the light box? I imagine I'd use it instead of the softbox?
    Also how do I achieve the look of the watch standing on its own?
     
  5. Overread

    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Follow the link I gave - it will explain all you need to know about the lightbox :)
    As for the watch standing on its own more tricky you could use some fine cables in the lightbox or a base the same colour as the background. I suspect some cleanup in editing would be needed, but so long as the main effect works it should not be too difficult
     
  6. Ygrazi

    Ygrazi TPF Noob!

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    Woops I clicked the link after I posted. It seems so easy! Thank you.
     
  7. kundalini

    kundalini Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Here's a method by Scot Kelby. It requires some photoshop skills.

    The Digital Photography Book, Volume 3 - Video Downloads | Kelby Training


    Scroll down mid-way to Special Wire for Hanging Products (video). Also have a look at the one above it Enhancing Highlights and Shadows in Post (video).
     
  8. grafiks

    grafiks TPF Noob!

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    Nice link. Thanks for sharing. :thumbup:
     
  9. LearnMyShot

    LearnMyShot TPF Noob!

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    Yes, lighting equipment is very versatile. But when shooting products you need to look at the reflective quality of what you're shooting and light it appropriately. In other words, you cannot shoot a crystal object very well using a direct hard light, but that may work well on a fabric. I choose the type of lighting depending on what the object is. So look at each object as a separate lighting challenge and choose the type of lighting set up that is best for that object.
     
  10. IgsEMT

    IgsEMT No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Very Nice
     
  11. LearnMyShot

    LearnMyShot TPF Noob!

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    It's me again. One last important thing to know. You must remove the crystal of each watch so you can light the faces properly and without reflection on the glass. Just go to a jeweler and have them remove the crystals. In the final photo no one will know.
    If you do this you're halfway home!
     
  12. Battou

    Battou No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I've always worked without a flash. Sure it takes longer in the exposure department but it saves a lot of time and effort having pieces removed from the watch. Another part about it is that this habit will prove useful when shooting glass ware.

    Maybe later I'll do up a quick watch shot if my brother still has the watch I am thinking of.

    I do have examples of some non watch shots taken and properly visible through transparent material without a flash for anyone who wants to see them, one of them was taken with my portrait lens.
     
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2010

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