Not Your Everyday Banana

by Bart Arondson

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40

Thanks for all the feedback. Mixing and matching what other answers that were given, I got this. Mixing it all together a bit, here is a very very quick snapshop of what I'm going to do. Please note that I did this in 5 min, didn't take out all the gear...and only did the neck part for demonstration. STEP 1: Take a simple picture picture of your item on ...


19

The more space you have the easier this is - firstly you can throw more light at the background to even our creases is your material of choice without it bouncing back onto your subject, and secondly the longer lens you use, the smaller your background can be, to the point where if you're using a telephoto your background only has to be just bigger than your ...


18

The important thing is to use a bounce flash (indirect flash) to avoid reflections, which is what makes the most photos look so unprofessional and ugly. There are some good explanations and tutorial on how to use a bounce-flash correctly, which would be way too much here: Lighting tip - 4 ways to bounce a flash Homemade Bounce Flash instructions In ...


16

Mike Stimpson (balakov on Flickr) is an absolute maestro of Lego photography, and best of all he maintains a separate account - Balakov's Setups - where he shares his behind-the-scenes shots, showing his full lighting setup and more. Here are a couple of examples:


15

Mirrors reflect, there's nothing you can do about that (except spray the mirror with something but clients are unlikely to go for that). All you can do is position the mirror and camera so that what's reflected is as unobjectionable as possible. A good idea would probably be to position the mirror to reflect a plain wall or ceiling. If you get further away ...


15

The glare effect on the monitor itself is a digitized effect, it is not real. Technically speaking, it is near impossible to get a clear photograph of a computer screen with the image it is displaying like you can see in that Apple example. What is generally done is a photograph of the screen(s) are taken while they are off, and the images that are ...


15

I would start with this question "How to properly do shadowless product photos". Once you have that down, the only real differences for this type of photography is the mannequin that you are going to add in. You have two options, you can add in a mannequin, and shoot multiple shots with pieces of the mannequin missing and not missing(ie neck). Then you would ...


15

The coin reflects light. With a light shining straight on it, much of it may be reflected straight back at the camera: The first thing to do is move the light to the side and put a dark object where it used to be. The dark object is now reflected in the coin, but that's not noticeable: There are still many specular highlights on the relief and ...


15

Put a white sheet between you and the trophy - some distance from the trophy, but basically "all around". Cut a rectangular hole in it that is about the size of the trophy. Use a long lens, and shoot the trophy through the hole. Now most of what is reflected will be "white sheet", with just a small hole in the middle where you were standing. If you further ...


13

Don't use auto white balance - choose a color temperature that looks well and stick to it (or use a gray card if the color accuracy is important) Close all the windows - the daylight color changes based on weather, if possible use only flashes and photographic color balanced lights, if you must use normal indoor lights try not to change light bulbs, if you ...


12

I'm sure someone will chime in with a 2 page rundown on how to do this. But the basic idea is to get a lightbox, light tent, or a pop-up light tent. You can read a tutorial on how to make one yourself here at digital photography school. Once you have a lightbox and properly setup lighting, Photoshopping out the remaining few shadows is quite easy for anyone ...


12

There are some articles online specifically oriented towards taking photographs of LEGO creations. Indeed, the reflectivity of the plastic imposes some additional difficulties which you have to be aware of (especially black flat surfaces). Here are a few tutorials and other general articles: Three Stages to Better Photos of LEGO Creations LEGO photography ...


12

I'd recommend reading the book Light: Science and Magic by Hunter, Fuqua, and Biver. It has a whole chapter dedicated to lighting glass. From memory, it says that with glass it's lighting the edges correctly that is important in coveying the qualities of glass. (No connection to the book by the way, other than being a satisfied reader).


11

Also on Digital Photography School, Alex Koloskov walks through creating attractive product photos. And in his blog he shows how to achieve almost the same results with $55 light setup. His blog in general is very educative, as he's professional product photographer who regularly shares the setups used to get the results he got.


11

For clear ice cubes: Use filtered water, not straight from the tap. Boil it and let it cool down. Boil it a second time and let it cool down. (this double boil gets rid of dissolved air in the water, which is a big source of haze) You may need to slow down the freezing by putting your ice mold inside a bigger tray filled with water - fast freezing from the ...


10

There are a few things that could be done to get better photographs to start with (and some things you can fix afterwards, but would be better fixed when the shots are taken): photograph from directly above dead center to avoid the perspective distortion you see in these photos (with the top edge narrower than the bottom edge). This can be corrected in ...


10

You WILL have reflections - the question is: what would you like to see there? Seriously. Because 1. You will have to put that there or 2. Do that in post-processing. Both is painful, #2 is a bit less money-wasting, but more time-wasting. :-) You could use a polarizer to remove reflections, if that helps. Makes the object look dull though... Also, you can ...


9

I think you really need more light. Don't be afraid to pump up the wattage there, you can use shutter speed and aperture to effect the exposure. My setup is fairly similar: But the lights on the side are very bright and the softbox on top is even more so (it's a Westcott cheapie continuous light). That light is bright enough to really take the shadows ...


9

In the immortal words of the late National Geographic photo editor Bob Gilka, "Kid, if you want to be a better photographer, you're going to have to stand in front of more interesting stuff." That said, welcome to the sometimes not-so-wonderful world of the commercial/industrial photographer. As often as not, making a dramatic, exciting picture of something ...


8

There are many improvements that could be made here. Firstly, you need to use a much longer exposure, and a lower ISO setting. Get a tripod, even a cheap one, and use mirror lockup. Could do with stopping down a bit further for depth of field. Post processing You might be able to get away with your current shots, with some post processing. Here I've taken ...


8

You can't change the laws of physics. One of them is that, in terms of reflections, the angle of incidence equals the angle of reflection. If your camera's optical axis is 90° with respect to a reflective surface, you're going to see a reflection of the camera. The only way to change this is to either: 1) Change the angle away from 90° enough that the ...


8

First of all, it's important to realize that, when you photograph a reflective object, you're actually photographing the surrounding scenery as it reflects off the object. This means that it's not enough to just set the object in a lightbox and maybe point some spot lights at it, at least unless you want to make the reflections rather simple and dull. ...


7

The book Light Science and Magic is just about the best resource on product photography for beginners. It's about lighting in general but it's written by a product photographer and most of the material and importantly the examples relates to indoor small product photography (there's a bit on portraits later on). It's very easy to read yet in covers the vast ...


7

As Rob said, a tilt-shift lens is ideal. I talked to a product photographer who specifically mentioned it's use. Basically, you position the camera on a tripod just to the left or right of the mirror so it's out of the reflection. With a normal lens it will be obvious that it's taken at an angle but by using the shift function of the lens you're able to ...


7

The short answer is: it's pretty difficult. You can't just shoot it on a mannekin then clone out the mannekin because that won't reveal the interior surfaces (e.g. the bit where it says FOX in your left image). It looks like the only way to do it (short of using a very cleverly lit, non-reflective, transparent mannekin) is to get down and dirty in Photoshop. ...


7

First, make sure your camera is set to highest resolution and quality supported, the galaxy S2 has a 8 mega pixels camera but it can also be set to take lower resolution pictures, down to 640x480 (0.3 mega pixels) and at that low resolution the pictures are really mostly unusable. I believe what you call "dotted" is noise, the way to reduce noise is to have ...


7

I think the main problem is your packaging, as Stan mentions in his comment. The packaging is wrinkled such that, no matter where you place your lights, you are going to have some surfaces reflecting onto the camera. If you try to move your lights closer, to make the light softer, you'll have light bouncing off those things at literally every possible ...



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