In 1998, Amazon revolutionized how we spend our money by delivering products to customers’ homes without requiring them to go to the store. Online shopping is now more popular than ever and is crucial if you want to run a business that sells products.
The product image can have a big impact on the sales of a product. If customers don’t fully understand what they’re buying by looking at the image on the screen, they will likely not order the product. This has made proper product photography more important than ever.
What is Product Photography all about?
Product photography means taking pictures of products for use in advertisements or on eCommerce websites selling that product. It also ensures that the store guidelines are followed with consistent quality to meet the standards of platforms such as Amazon or Walmart.
This is how all physical products such as laptops, home appliances, clothing, toys, makeup, etc., are photographed before being used for print or digital media advertisement.
Product photography is most helpful in selling items online, but it is also vital for catalogs, magazines, billboards, and newspapers. The images are also used in television commercials or printed materials that are associated with the product.
Clear photos also help showcase different features of any given device, whether a laptop or a camera. For example, photos at different angles can highlight a part, such as a button layout or the ports. The photos might also be used as marketing material by the company that has made the product or other sellers.
Product photography also saves money, reducing the number of employees needed for sales and for putting together furniture displays. Instead of needing people on hand to display what’s in stock, you only need a good product image online so customers can browse and shop at their convenience.
What makes a good Product Photograph?
The first requirement for what makes a product photograph good is what’s called consistency. Shop owners want customers to recognize their products when they see them online, which means that the photographs must appear what it looks like in person.
Pictures of individual products are captured with consistent backgrounds, angles, and lighting for online presentation. Quality and consistency are essential as it makes it easy for customers to see what they’re buying.
In addition, it allows an eCommerce platform such as Amazon to ensure that the quality standards are met across all product images. For example, you will often notice that all product images have a white background, an essential requirement by many eCommerce platforms.
Second, good lighting is essential to product photography. As mentioned earlier, every product is photographed with a specific background and consistent lighting. After all, you would not want your product to appear too bright or dark in any given photograph.
While all products are photographed before being put up on sale, what if someone has already bought the product? That would leave no reason for customers to stay on your page or visit your site.
To address that, you can include “background branding,” which features your shop name and logo on the background of the product image. The branding lets customers know where they can buy what you are selling. Note that eCommerce platforms often do not allow for logos to be added to the main product image.
To conclude, if customers aren’t clear on what they’re buying by looking at the image, the store might have a hard time making a sale. After all, would you order something online if the product image is blurry?
What are the different types of Product Photography?
There are many different types of product photography, including lifestyle, close-up shots, and flat lay. Lifestyle Photography shows a real life use for a product.
Close-Up Shots show details or features on a specific object in focus while the background is blurred out . Flat Lays include props, lighting, and no backdrop.
Can product photography be done using smartphone cameras?
Some examples of smartphones that provide an easy-to-use product photography option are the Apple iPhone, Samsung Galaxy S series or the Google Pixel series.
The lighting capabilities on these phones may also be less than ideal however, so ensure that you have a proper lighting set up in the room.
How is Product Photography different from other types of photography?
There are many different types of photography, including portraits, landscapes, and events. The main difference between product photography and other types of photography is that the photo’s subject is an inanimate object, not a person or event.
Is Food Photography and Product Photography same?
No, food photography and product photography are not the same thing. Food photography focuses on capturing the beauty of food while product photography is mainly about displaying a specific object in an image. Sometimes it’s used to show close up details such as scratches or damages but mostly it’s just used to display the product itself.
Food and object photography have key categories that businesses may need to have photos for on their website or advertisements. These may include things like recipes, ingredients, instructions for making dishes, and restaurant interiors for food photography.
Product photography may include photos of items in use so customers can better understand how these products look in real world situations.
You might see other types of product photography are lifestyle shots where products are used to create an image related to their surroundings or environment.
Who does Product Photography?
Product photographers work in a studio, outside, or both. They can work alone or under the supervision of a photography director and might also work as part of a team with other photographers and videographers.
They would need to ensure that the product is well lit and make adjustments depending on other factors such as time of day or weather conditions.
Product photographers use professional camera equipment such as DSLRs, ideally full-frame DSLRs, monopods, lenses, and lighting. In addition, they also use Photoshop or other image editing software in case retouching is necessary.
A product photographer’s responsibilities often include:
• Planning the execution of projects with art directors and clients; working closely with others on the team both in person and via telecommunication.
• Lighting models or products in ways that best highlight their features.
• Using digital technology to touch up images if needed.
• Initiating, organizing, and conducting photoshoots.
• Composing shots in the camera before editing them in post-production.
• Ensuring that project deadlines are met on time and within budget.
Product photographers may also make use of models and other people. This can include makeup artists, stylists, art directors who decide what will be shown in shots depending on client specifications, set designers who design backdrops for images, and stylists who create backgrounds.
How to get Paid for Product Photography Services?
Product photography is a lot of work. The subject should always be in perfect condition. There should never be any damage or defects.
The product needs to look good from every angle, and it must be taken in an exciting setting while remaining visible enough for customers to see what they are buying.
Unfortunately, businesses have found an easy way around this inconvenience by finding talented product photographers to take the pictures for them.
This means that these skilled professionals can demand a high price to get their work done, even though it is actually very simple. If you are interested in how you can get paid for doing this service then read on.
Getting involved in photographing someone else’s products is actually very simple. Every day there are countless photos taken of products for magazines, catalogs and advertising purposes.
Businesses are always looking for professionals who can make their products look appealing in every possible way. If you have good technical knowledge about photography then this will be an easy job to get started with.
How Does it Work?
If businesses can get professionals to take their photos, they can keep the shots in-house. This means that quality product photography is being outsourced regularly, creating jobs for people in a position like yours.
Getting involved in photographing products for others will not be hard to photograph products for others since you already know what you are doing and businesses are willing to pay handsomely for your services.
What Do I Need?
Getting started with providing product photography is very simple because you already have everything that you need to get the process started. You mainly just need a camera of some kind, but this can be something as cheap as an iPhone if you are on a budget.
Other than this it would be useful to have a tripod and maybe even an camera light kit. These things are not essential but they will help you get the best results from your shots as lighting is important.
Here’s a video guide explaining how to get started with the gear mentioned above:
What’s in it for Me?
It is actually very easy to start getting paid for doing product photography, especially since there is such a high demand for this service.
You may not get rich off your efforts but there is definitely a lot of money to be made through this line of work and it will only continue to grow.
You can also do many different types of product photography, from large items like motor vehicles, boats and aeroplanes, down to smaller things like jewellery or makeup kits.
Once you have established yourself as someone who knows what they are doing, you could even look at starting up your own business and offering these services to others on a contract basis.
This means that you only need to take the photos and send them over for businesses to use; there is no need for product photography experience or even knowledge of how to market the final images.
What are the best markets for Product Photography services?
With so many marketers needing quality images fast, it can be difficult for any single professional photography service provider to stay afloat.
For this reason, many are electing to specialize in certain markets, ensuring that they remain competitive while tailoring their services toward the unique needs of any given vertical.
By understanding where demand is highest for product photography services, professionals can make informed decisions about which niches will provide sustainable profits over time.
The US and Canada stand out as two of the most attractive international markets for those who sell high-quality product photography services online and offline.
The UK, Italy, and Spain represent some of the most attractive European markets for product photography services. On the other hand, China and France present opportunities for service providers interested in attracting clients from outside Europe but who do not want to expand into North America.
How to Market for Product Photography Services
Once you have become skilled at product photography, it is time to start thinking about how you will make money from this.
Obviously offering your services on a regional basis is one way of working, but you need to think bigger than this if you really want things to work out.
The internet is your best friend in this situation because there are many different businesses online that could benefit from your services, but might not even be aware of it.
The trick here is to become a freelance photographer and start marketing yourself through the web. This means creating an impressive portfolio to show off your work and then finding outlets to market your services to.
Another good idea in this situation is to look at the different types of product and see if there are any that you can take photographs of in your own home.
For example, someone may want a set of product photography services for their jewellery business, but they do not have the money to pay for it upfront.
In this case you can offer to take the photos in your own home and then use the images for marketing purposes. If you are lucky, they may even pay you later on when they start making sales.
So there you have it, a crash course on how to get started with product photography services! With any luck you will be able to make some money through your efforts, but it all depends on how much effort you are willing to put in.
Mathew Daly, is a 32-year old photographer from Boston. Mathew has been intrigued by photography from an early age ever since he was given his first camera. He started wandering his neighborhood to capture the beauty in the most mundane of things. He loves to write about cameras and helps buyers make an informed choice.