Product Photography Projects
I had just spent 10 months after moving to The States and I was (and still am) unclear about many things in my life but one thing I was certain of is that I love photography and have built a decent skill level in it. I needed to somehow find a niche and start a side hustle in it.
So what do I start with? Who do I talk to? What new skills do I learn? How does stuff work around here? I had so many more questions and I was looking for the quickest little action step to take to generate some momentum and geek out about this hobby.
One of my favorite cousins is an entrepreneur and I respect him a lot for his tenacity and the stuff he has accomplished. I shared with him that I am kind of interested in Product Photography and he remembered it.
A few months later I watched this tutorial on CreativeLive and got super excited about trying it out. I asked my cousin and he gave me a few products to try out.
I took a stab at it right away on a matte black paper and got decent results.
But something was missing. I notice the black shadows below the scissor? I wanted that to be illuminated and reflected. I love how Don Giannatti used stuff lying around in the studio to achieve the results he was looking for. There was a certain DIY-ness to it that really resonated with me.
So I took out a piece of glass from one of the photo frames I had lying around and I just lay that on top of the matte black surface and voila. An image with the reflection of what I needed and exactly how I envisioned it to be... wait, not quite.
Notice the double reflections? This is the moment I learned that if we place objects too close to the glass surface you actually get two reflections, one from the bottom layer glass and the other from the upper layer of the glass. I researched more on this and found out that there is a special glass I'd need to buy but I didn't have the time and patience for that.
Upon further thinking, I figured that I could buy a really shiny black tile and avoid the double reflection and it worked like magic!
My cousin was super happy with the results and I thought I'd commit fully into this. Don, in the tutorial, recommended the Canon TS-E 90mm f/2.8 Tilt & Shift Manual Focus lens as being one of the best lenses for Product Photography.
Oh, this lens is awesome! I'd just learned about Tilt-Shift Photography and this was crazy. These lenses are also kind of rare and run low in stock at various stores. I made the investment and got my hands on one from Adorama.
As I was doing these experiments, I was offered to do a few product shots for the company I work in. I got some decent results but since I didn't have a decent business strategy in place, I lost the opportunity.
It was a lot of fun when I did it. What I learned from this is that product photography takes time and one needs good space to do it well. I somehow managed to get the above images in the small room that I lived in.
I might get back into this again :)