Photography Tips: Product Photography At Home

hello boys and girls out there in
photography land I go to call off my lovely friend here Jen Williams who is
the creator of the naked jam branch great source a
beautiful and Jams and preserves really really seriously high end
places you’re be exclusive aren’t you I am certainly but what I need is a
picture of my new customers label chewton glen to go on a pop up banner
the banner looks a bit like this I know it’s a bit
short notice because I only phoned you yesterday need to get this thing ordered will have
the chewton glen up here the picture the jar lovely foliage from the state jam and up a bit some box that that bit there we are missing got you so you can
just happened yes so as in pop up banner we’re talking a
one of those stand things to go to show see you want I know if you got several
different labels does it matter which any or you just choose i think which
is cheap it’s got to the chewton glen label well obviously
I mean the this different colors I noticed yea let’s a have a look at it or what we can do it create nice effect okay socket whatever we need to do to make it to make it look great yes if we do a few versions like cause Jonah
I might be bored but they may want to cut it out we don’t know so if I do sort of like a little jumble up stacky thing of jars
make you a couple of a little arty close up angle little soft focusty bits little soft focusty bitsyea that would be good but also as it’s new product for them and we’ve got you here perhaps we could use
french press behind us to make it a bit more complete
hellish mmm might not go might just to have some options yet yep sure okidok yep no it’s lovely it’s lovely alright so if we work
together we get something set up on here would do some stuff for that and
to make you look nice guys this is Jen’s own kitchen because we
couldn’t go to choose when to do it it’s a short notice so will just gonna I thought you’ll be interest to see how we work
around it make it happen your artistic I’m autistic so let’s do
it fast massive come on then alright Jen’s done a little bit arty farty gave an idea an so what we
gonna do shot we’re going for even though this is
kind of like you know it looks like a mess on the table but isn’t we got the jaw here in the foreground this
the shot we want to create jars here in the foreground we’ve got some little flowers there
because everything was in ingredients of this we’re not gonna go for a single
jar all on its own with nothing because he’s
just gonna be empty and nothing you know it like a this week at 2 for 1 at your local supermarket which isn’t the chewton glen hotel you know what we’re gonna do we have this jar really
really sharp so it stands out this is jar we’ve got the label but we got the
name then will also kinda coming back narrow field will not use any this
actually which is playing around with this stuff soft so gonna be jammy me kinda mmm smell sort of sizzle you know what i
mean sort of like smelling bubbling and cooking choosing Jen
when she was on James Martin on the BBC recently talking about a
hundred drip things you’re getting so excited I was
brilliant jammy stuff we have a little tiny ini bit of cake
it’s gonna be really really soft in the background so his how your execute it excuse me my dear I’ve got long lens using that 70-
200 on a crop sensor those of you who don’t worry about that
stuff am I want a shallow depth of the field don’t I? well I go 2.8 lens that’s very shallow that feel very very blurry background blurry background but it might be too
blurry so what we gonna do run through the shot from one at a time
still using a cable release with mirror lockup because I don’t want to risk any
camera shake if these are gonna blown up big we can’t
have softness in it and there’s no room to crop so its gonna be composing camera so It’s all line up i’m using the the window light from the door sorry here’s
a little thing on light for you see that little highlight their that
started creeping to the room we don’t want that on these jars because
it will ruin things when we do the one with the you know the
jars on the dresser we’re gonna make sure work fast enough so we don’t get like sneaking onto the jars it will horrible so we use in the window lights nice window
lights good light we don’t sunlight on there thats why it’s on the shady bit F2.8 aperture screening noises of lorna
reversing into a chair with the camera set it onto the camera f2.8 mirror lockup white balance isset it on Sunny we’re shooting raws sort it out later make sure my auto focus point is
right smack on the front of that jar we wanted to be sharp the shot all compose lock up the mirror take a shot now all I need to do read reports in the lovely Jennifer I just wanna increase the depth of field abit So im gonna take that who was that you rollover first instead of shooting
something else oh lorna I’m going from 2.8 to F4 because I just wanna run similar
experiments increasing that the field little it
little by little just in case the 2.8 is too much i wont known to look at it
on the computer im gona run around 5.6 and I want an 8 and I can see already in the back to the
camera is getting a bit to sharp let me run an 11 and then you guys can just look at these
and you can see the effect on this is a good thing about why you might want to use
all those middle apertures you know for subtle changes that last one is F 16 as we just run
through them quickly you can say look at depth the field is just getting deeper deeper deeper and deeper I prefer
the shallow ones definitely okay onto the dresser well stress the
shot you see Jen has kinda cleared some space because we’ve got some jars that looks a
little a little bit bare but we’re gonna do use a long lens shallow sort of you know depth of the field
so we’re just gonna sort of come through here we just want see the edge of this jars the edge of this jars which could
easily pass as a teapot we just got some some of these dresser is kind of you know what you laughing at kinda
dresser in this we got a little plant going on here the soft background yet well spotted you see it’s ok turning a label that label wasn’t facing quite the same
as the others I mean were gonna use depth of the field that sort of thing
will notice well spotted Jen okay now some it
happened between when we started and it’s another shot in
now the Sun has come out light changes all the time don’t forget
so that’s what 7 building blocks of photography about lookin at all this stuff and using a brain
now we got highlight running across here we
didn’t have that earlier when we were looking at this dresser that is a pain in the neck because you
cameras gonna either expose for that perfect this is all in shade
or its going expose for that that will be blown out white so will gonna get round it how we
gonna do it jen has got because she is Jen a role of what we got that where is it this
stuff what is it tablecloth oh it’s table cloth so what we wanna do is we want to block the light coming in
here we’ve don’t want that light there but we
don’t want to block the nice light sort of or blowing through behind here so we didn’t dress rehears this people let’s have a go Jen is going on a chair I’m for mushroom one midriff very
excited Lorna giggling behind the camera stop wobbling the camera Lorna Rose, right what do we got that’s pretty good meh that’s right that’s
right we don’t get any highlights on the jars that’s good because we got some nice little light wrapping around them and if you can see viewers in there we
got nice even light to see the difference between the shelf down here that one up there you see that little highlight that’s pops in
just there that would ruin our picture so let’s do it I’m using long lens I’m using a you don’t wanna know this it’s just under 200 millimetres on a crop sensor
what is that i dont know it doesn’t matter it’s the one that looks right okay depth of the field I just wanna shoo I just wanna get the edge of one of the label of with the chewton glen so my shots are all set up I have read pre done that i’m focusing very carefully
on the H of Chewton Glen just in there which so
the sort of hopefully come in nice and sharp nice
light nice composition remember this is gonna be blown up big
into a you know banner thing we can’t afford to
crop we don’t throw a any pixels every last pixels so in
camera composition really important shots all set up cable release mirror
lockup becauseI cant afford camera shake even
the slightest vibration even with heavy tripod so im looking the mirror let the camera sit still take the shot that’s looking good check the source a shot have a quick
look in the back zoom in make sure yeah and that’s good I’m gonna
try another aperture so im currently running at 4.5 im gonna try a 2.8 and just see what happens same shot I have a feeling they will look nice but I think the depth of field will be
little bit too small we want you to read the label clearly it’s not bad is not bad I’m gonna
probably go with the 4.8 one anyway right so that’s that sharp kinda
taken care of by mirror lockup by accident just take another one I was gonna do
slightly different angle so im gonna slope that way that way I wanna do a straight up and down version so just by tilting the camera
making sure it’s straight making sure the focus point is where i want it there a little beep good mirror up take pics you doing a great job there
Jen lighting assist Jane used to be what
you think it’s a manager yes for both stage manager for the
bolshoi Valley how cool is that right one more shot its gonna angle it in the other direction so got a
little set of sequences three shots so there we go so it’s some nice outright shots going on
there I think that worked subscribe to our
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photography videos well for more great photo tips workshops and training come and see us in our website

58 Replies to “Photography Tips: Product Photography At Home

  1. I love that you always put so much emphasis on how to get the light right! Right now I have kind of moved away from photography that involves a lot of preparation, but the light is what we work with so I can still learn something from you.
    At the moment I am more into the kind of photography that also involves cuddling exotic animals 😀

  2. Thanks for your video. I'm big fan of your channel and your explain.
    I always happy to find a new video.

  3. Mike,
    Another great video ! Keep them coming. I noticed you are very concerned about vibration in the shots and rightfully so, did you turn on or off the Vibration Control on the lens ? And off topic for this video but in the same scope, when photographing panning shots is it better to turn off VC on the lens also ? Thanks !

  4. Great video once again Mike, great to see the the way the images were made.
    Thanks for taking us along.

    Best Wishes 

  5. Mike as always your videos inspire me to be a better photographer and to get out and challenge my creativity. I may be a world away in the US state of Illinois I feel like you're in the room with me. You bring a human element and humor to each video I can't get enough of your knowledge and technics. Keep them coming and I'll keep watching

  6. Great video, Mike :D…I'm taking all of your tips on board 🙂 hopefully purchasing the Nikon D7200 soon 🙂

  7. Mike is so cool, great photographer, laid back and very chilled, i learn a lot from this guy, he ain't up his own ass like 90% of em.

  8. Another great video of help and tips, as always I find Mike very easy to listen too and learn from. I always look forward to his next video tutorial. Keep up the great work Mike.

  9. Did I hear you joke about being autistic? It's all right if you really are. I just want to be clear that you weren't making fun of people with autism.

  10. I must say your videos have taught me so much over the last couple of years I have been watching. You are a brill teacher!!!

  11. Great video mike!  I liked the demo of the effects of the F stop vs depth of field.  It was great to hear you preferred the shallow depth of field,  I found myself leaning towards the greater depth of field.  I thought that it helped the viewer tie in the jam to the cake much easier.  It is so nice to see how we all have our own view on the same image. Look forward to your next video.

  12. thanks mike, love these on-location tutorials 🙂 wasn't too keen on the shot of the jars sloping forward, looked they were about to fall over lol

  13. Great vid, and I learned from it… but really, as a guy as I am, Jen is a hottie. Lucky for her that I am 5,000 miles apart from her current location.

    Addendum 1: Watched the vid again. It struck me that I have learned over my use of a digital camera, something I would never have done when using film, is I take many variations of the same basic comp. Also, I have learned to always leave a small percentage to all sides.

    Addendum 2: Jen has quite a nice smile, but also a good focus/seriousness. Good for her.

  14. @Mike Browne Cant seen to find your page on facebook, any chance of posting a link to it?
    Also, what sort of post production would you do on a shoot like this?
    Been a watcher for a few years now and loved your interview with the photography show. Trying to save up to get on one of your courses. You are one of my inspirations in photography, the other being your friend Bella West.
    Anyway, please keep up with the videos, everything I know about photography I have learnt from you.

    Thank you Mike.

  15. Hi Mike – love all the videos.
    A reminder for shooting the next one is

    When using a tripod and the Nikon 70-200 VR /VRII version – remember to turn off the VR function – the camera and lens combo will serch for vibrations …but using a tripod and Mup – there are none.

    alle the best


  16. Thanks, Mike. Most of your videos simply make me want to grab my camera bag and go shooting straight away. Just like this one. And I love the images you took there.

  17. Mike you're one of a few professional photographers  that admits to using a crop sensor camera, most pros say oh when you go pro you must go full frame I think that is a bunch of bull.Keep up the great work and teaching us laymen the proper way to use our equipment and take better photos.Thanks Mike.

  18. Never stops amazing me Mike. You can take something as simple as jam and make an amazing picture of it. I wish I had half the artistic eye that you do…lol

    I havent touched my camera in over a month cause of an artistic block. And all the images I am thinking up, I cant get the locations, people, props, etc, together to do them. But now im looking at my cupboard a bit differently…lol

  19. I'm a big fan of Mike's photography tuition but I'm sorry. I'm now CLIMBING THE WALLS each time he says, "Going On". We've got some orange going on here. There's some sky going on there. Got some plants going on. Arghhh!!!  It's called a word whisker and no professional presenter should allow word whiskers to continue. (Not one who has been "presenting to camera since 2003" anyway;)
    Forgive my petty pedanting but I just can't take it any more…
    (Maybe it's an autism thing, I'm sorry if that's the case)

  20. I use a 70-200 on a crop and I'm fine with it. I don't understand why people have such a problem with stepping forward or backwards just a bit to compensate. Great video.

    Thanks from Chicago

  21. Hi Mike. Nice video as always. I'm not to much into tilted versions on the jars – it creates the illusion of everything falling down. 
    Thanks for your tips; i have learned so much from your videos!!!

  22. @Mike Browne Hello mike, Is there any real difference between nikon lens compared to tamron or any other 3rd party lens e.g sigma ?

  23. Your YouTube channel is just brilliant. I'm 28 and have just bought my first Dslr camera and want to get into photography more. The thought of all the work that goes into getting great images is a daunting thought along with having the courage to walk about busy areas taking photos, after watching many of your videos though Iv built up more courage and have a much bigger understanding on what makes a great picture. Iv got it out my head that it isn't my camera making the picture. It is I and the camera is just my tool. I practice everything you preach and it is working great for me

  24. Great video Mike! Love your style of presenting. It's great seeing the results of the different settings rather than trying to picture them in your mind. Keep up the great work!

  25. I ALWAYS get more info from this guy in 10 minutes than every other channel can give in hours. To the point, no fluff, clear to understand, great video and nice sense of humour. I bought his course from his website – worth at least five times what I paid. Great stuff. Wish he would do something on photographing t-shirts as trying to get great images is driving me round the bend (hint hint).

  26. Just wanted to let you know, now that i've been through about 90% of your video's, that they are really really great. I've been Youtubing a lot looking at all kinds of tutorials but i have never come across something like your channel.
    You're great listen to and i really get the feeling you are trying to learn us something whithout being a commercial pr*ck (pardon my french). It has been an absolute delight watching your channel. And i will be purchasing your seven building blocks course after the hollidays.
    hope to lots and lots more video's comming up to improve my photography skills

  27. Mike, thank you for saying, "I am shooting on a crop sensor, for those of you worrying about that sort of thing" because I always have felt that I needed a full-frame camera, as most photographers seem to push that. However your photos always look awesome, and it does not matter what camera you use. Again, it is the photographers talent that matters. I am now content with my Canon 550d and see no reason to upgrade. THANK YOU!!

  28. While I quite enjoyed this tutorial and learned a thing or two about the use of aperture from you and lighting from the stage manager of the Bolshoi Ballet, , I didn't quite understand why you tilted the shots in the second session (dresser) and why you let the belly of the jug interfere with the shot. Also, would this shot not have come out better in the landscape format from a little less angle, so that the viewer could clearly see the make of the product? Perhaps the labels on the jars could have faced the camera instead of straight front. Still learning, not criticizing.

  29. WOW !

    There are guys on youtube who show off their $100k+ fancy photo gear and studio, they are up tight but their results are poor and you learn almost nothing from them, while your natural, simple vids, your work with any tool you get are simply genius.

  30. Just my immediate reactions: I was missing some shots at the table, where all the jars and all the elder flowers are in the picture. The setup looked so promising, and we only got a corner of it. If the task was to create a vertical poster, then perhaps the setup should have been different. Maybe with the flowers below and the other jars above and behind the jar in focus.
    More importantly: Jars on a shelf HAVE to be absolutely 100% vertical! Top leaning out, and we won't look at the product name or anything, because we'll be busy worrying that they're going to fall or slide off the shelf! We have to be absolutely relaxed that the jars are safe! Even your "straight" shot is leaning – look at the left edge of the etiquette! To me that's much worse than a slanted horizon. Don't forget that we see the jars slightly from below, so the right side of the jars should be leaning back ever so slightly to appear vertical – it's a bit like shooting a tall building with walls that seem to be leaning inwards towards the top.

  31. your tutorials are great. Can you please suggest which lens would be appropriate for these kind of product shoots for Canon 80d (APSC dslr).

  32. Ahh mate!!! think on your feet. I like it. That is what I bloody well had to do very, very fast whilst shooting with nat in London. Loads of practice shutter dragging, but once the supermodel came into the picture I had to manually shoot with my tripod very fast. Top it off, that twenty minute shoot was just before a concert or musical. All in all I would say that was the fastest thinking speed my brain ever encountered:
    Model positioning, yelping out instructions in Spanish to her (just for fun), camera placement, iso, 3 SHUTTER SPEEDS in one: how to keep the blurred people in the frame+blurred vehicles+ and keep the model pin sharp. Three different shutter speeds, dragging two different elements and freezing the most important one. Felt as if I had to expose three times over! with light changing extremely fast as this was Oxford Street at night.
    On top of all that I had to look whilst still holding my cable release in my hand and make sure model was not going to get run over or hit by a vehicle…be kinda messy.

    Holy Cow! that was a brain frier, and Guinness worthy shoot. Model/friend kindly thought of me first, remembering I liked the Guinness in the UK very much more so than at home and kindly showed me where to get one after the musical.

    great vid Mike. sometimes the videos help my photography here and there. As I have wise-cracked in the past, I really learn best by gettin' out and doing! I freeze my can off to learn more; ten minute walk shooting hand held street photography or dressed like an arctic explorer with my tripod shooting 20 min exposures. I am a real addict, I need help mate!

  33. When I first was starting out in Photography this man taught me loads of technique. His videos are so informing and entertaining. Glad to see you're still going strong Mike!

  34. Mike

    Great stuff!!!! I am glad you used that long lens in the house for this shot, it really made me appreciate the depth of field process more.


  35. What made me laugh right at the beginning of the video is the Chicken perched on her head.
    Looks like it can happen to the best. lol

  36. Amazing…! Would help if the jars turned in so the name on labels would be readable fully (last shots) but none the less brilliant. Would you with the aperture priority set a limit to the ISO so you keep it under certain acceptable number while you let the SS the only variable? how do you tackle the settings?

  37. Hello sir frm last 2.5 yrs i have been watching your video repeatedly… Nd u hve been saying in all ur videos to look closely observe think if some is not right or if something is sticking out of ur subject head..

    Nd look i found a Hen sticking out of this ladies head in ur video itself…

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