A Perfect Outdoor Product Shoot: Things You Should Know
Outdoor product photography is an art form, and it’s also a difficult one to master if you are a beginner. Shooting products outdoors comes with its own set of challenges. And they are often amplified when you’re working with camera equipment that isn’t the most high-end.
Creating images that are crisp, clear, and have professional lighting is no easy feat — but it will pay off in the long run for your brand.
if you have done your product research and setting off to do outdoor product shoot soon, this article will give you everything you need to know. How to capture your products effectively and keeping as much detail as possible in every photo.
From tips on locations to advice on lighting, we’ve got everything you need right here!
How To Conduct A Perfect Outdoor Product Shoot
1# Location, Location, Location:
Besides choosing a perfect camera for the shoot, you need to pick up the right location for your outdoor product shoot. You can’t just set up your products wherever you want and expect them to look good. Instead, you’ll want to find a location that allows you to do everything you need to do with ease.
As you’re searching for the right spot, consider the following things: –
- distance to the sun,
- the amount of shade,
- the amount of reflection.
While the sun will be your main light source, you want to ensure that it’s not too close to your products so that it doesn’t create shadows. You also don’t want it to be too far away because then your products will look too dark.
Ideally, you want to look for an area that has a decent amount of shade from nearby trees or buildings. This will allow you to keep the sun’s brightness without it being too bright. If there are any nearby surfaces that have a high chance of reflecting the sun’s light, you’ll want to avoid setting up there.
2# Establishing Props and Backdrops:
When you’ve picked the perfect location for your product shoot, it’s time to start adding props and backdrops. While you can always try to find a place in nature that has the right color and texture, it’s best to create your own backdrop so that its color is consistent throughout each photo. While you might have a gorgeous sunset in the distance, that color may be different in every photo — and that’s not the consistency that highlights your products well.
You can create a backdrop with a variety of things — like a large piece of black fabric or a roll of paper. You can even use a wall if you’re shooting indoors!
The important thing is that you have one consistent surface so that every photo looks the same.
3# Use Natural Light Whenever Possible:
The best light for your outdoor product shoot will be natural light — sunlight, to be exact. While you can use artificial light as well, it’s almost impossible to create the same brightness as natural light. When you’re photographing products outside, you want to be sure that the sun is hitting them from the side. This will give your products a beautiful glow without having the sunlight be too bright.
The best time of day to photograph products outdoors is around 12 p.m. If you go earlier than that, the sun will be too low and create shadows on your products.
If you go later than that, the sun will be too high and won’t hit your products at all. The perfect time for this is 12 p.m. to get the right amount of sun exposure with minimal shadows and maximum glow on your products.
4# Solidify Your Lighting Plan:
Once you’ve found the right location and established your props and backdrops, it’s time to solidify your lighting plan. This is arguably the most important part of your outdoor product shoot and can make or break your photos. You’ll want to set up your main source of light — usually the sun.
Then, add a fill light from the side to brighten up any shadows that the sun may have created. If you notice that your products are getting too dark, you can also add a reflector that will bounce the sun’s light back towards them (make sure it’s not silver, or it may reflect the light back into your camera and create a glare). When using natural light, you’ll want to make sure that you’re not overexposing the photos. Keep an eye on your camera’s exposure settings, and make adjustments as needed.
If you notice that your images are coming out too bright and losing detail, try adding a neutral density filter to your lens so that less light gets in.
5# Stay Steady With a Tripod:
One of the easiest ways to ruin an otherwise perfect product shoot is by not keeping your camera steady. If you’re photographing products outside, it may be difficult to keep your camera steady without a tripod.
If you don’t have one, don’t worry! You can usually buy a tripod online or rent one. If you don’t have time to pick one up before your shoot, there are ways to make do without one — like resting your camera on a nearby surface or asking someone to hold it for you while you take the shots. Whatever you do, don’t take the photos handheld.
You want your camera to be completely still so that it captures all of the details of the product, and a tripod will help you do just that.
6# Add Color With Filters:
If you want to add a pop of color to your outdoor product shoot, try picking up some colored filters. Colored filters can help you add a new layer of vibrancy and creativity to your images. They’re super affordable, and you can find a ton of different colors online. There are tons of ways to use colored filters for your product shoots.
You can use them to bring a pop of color to your backgrounds, create a colored glow around your products, or even just change the color of the sun. One of the easiest ways to use colored filters for your product shoot is to stick them on the end of your lens. Make sure to choose a filter with the same diameter as your lens so that it fits snugly at the end. Using colored filters on your lens will allow you to change the color of the sun and the light that hits your products.
If you want to change the color of the sun, make sure to position the filter so that it’s closest to the sun.
Capturing products outside is a difficult task, but it’s one that pays off in the end. You want your customers to see the products in the same way they see them in real life when they’re browsing your store.
Outdoor product shoots are the best way to capture all of the details of your products so that customers get a true sense of what they are buying. That’s why it’s important to pick the right location, create the right props and backdrops, use natural light whenever possible, and solidify your lighting plan.
With the help of these tips, you can successfully pull off a perfect outdoor product shoot and create images that are crisp, clear, and have professional lighting that highlights your products.