Product Photography Lighting - These effects desired

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by kundalini, Jun 22, 2009.

  1. kundalini

    kundalini Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    I have a friend that throws clay and is beginning her website. She obviously wants a photo gallery of her wares on display. She has seen the following websites and prefers the fade-to-black effect. I have shot a few before in a DIY lightbox and while I don't have a problems with an all white or all black background lighting, these are perplexing me. I envision a three light setup, with one overhead (possibly snooted) and two diffused on either side ~45° from camera.

    I have 1x SB600 and 2x SB800's, shoot through and reflected umbrellas and a 5-in-1 reflector, which I expect to use as a diffuser. I can work with TTL or manual settings.

    Here are a couple of links she provided as examples.
    Ben Owen Pottery - Home
    Julie Olson ::: Studio Potter ::: Functional Salt-Glazed

    I'm not real keen of the shadows at the base of the products and would like to avoid them while still retaining the soft lighting and gradual fade.

    Thanks for your help.
     
  2. c.cloudwalker

    c.cloudwalker TPF Noob!

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    It has been a while since I have worked with lights so I may be wrong but, here goes.

    In the Ben Owen photos, it looks like a two light set up to me with probably a reflector on the right. The first light (strip light?) is to the left of the camera almost straight off the side of the pots and slightly higher than the pots. The second seems to be almost right on top of the pots, still a little bit in front though.

    In Julie's photos, I believe you are right, it is a 3 light set up with one at the camera and the other two about the same distance away and probably a bit closer to the pottery. In some of the photos, more light seems to come from the right and, in others, more light seems to come from the left. And in yet some others it seems like they are all set the same. As in Ben's photos the lights are higher than the pots so as to show the top nicely enough.

    But then again, when looking at some of the other photos of Julie's work, it seems they were lit differently... Different photographers? or at some point the photographer bought an extra light?

    I think that no matter what you do, you are not going to get rid of hot spots on a shiny finish.

    Hope that helps.
     
  3. Don Kondra

    Don Kondra Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    First thing I would suggest is a graduated backdrop

    Then you can decide whether you want to use a light tent or diffuse the light some other way.

    Cheers, Don
     
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2009
  4. kundalini

    kundalini Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Thanks for the link Don. It's a bit rich, but it is a possibility if the "client" is willing to cough up the cost.... I mean it can be reused for a long time. I spoke with a guy there and he was quite informative.

    I'll keep looking atm.

    Anyone else?
     
  5. Don Kondra

    Don Kondra Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Okay, I suppose another option is to place the object far enough forward of the background and the light will naturally fall off... and/or it wouldn't take much work to airbrush it in...

    The top of this image is airbrushed..

    [​IMG]

    Cheers, Don
     
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2009
  6. JerryPH

    JerryPH No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    OU-OU-ME-ME please! :lmao:


    No graduated backstop is needed... if it is one colour (basically any colour will do, but medium grey will work nicely), all you need to do is control light drop off.

    All that you are trying to do is control the depth of field of light. Now, before someone jumps on me, yes, light has a depth of field and yes, it is controllable and no, you do not need 15 lights to do this... more like one, *maybe* two flashes are all that is needed.

    For info and ideas, check out my blog entry on how to do this. :) The principal concepts are that, yes light falls off, but you can make light fall off VERY fast. Get the keylight very close and have room in back for light to fade out. If done right, you will not need more than a few feet behind the pots. I've done it on a table top with one flash in my blog example.

    Oh... we want to see pics afterwards, please? :)
     
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2009
  7. kundalini

    kundalini Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    I guess that also means I should actually finish reading Light Science and Magic..... oh that's dry, but I'll just have to whet my whistle. :lol:

    We're planning to get together this coming weekend.
     
  8. JerryPH

    JerryPH No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Actually, LSM did not discuss this, strobist did... I just took it a notch higher for my needs and some minor blog material... lol
     
  9. musicaleCA

    musicaleCA TPF Noob!

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    *hands JerryPH a cookie* You're just full of useful information, aren't you? :greenpbl:
     
  10. JerryPH

    JerryPH No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Oh, I just get lucky once or twice a year... lol
     

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