Old style set-up on this shoot, happy with the feel on this, convincing sunlight look. Flash lighting. BTS images with too much steam, studio set-up, etc, all my own creation, props, art direction, photos, retouching…. More blog posts to follow to keep seeing new images.
If there is anything you want to see on my photography blog please contact and let me know.
I have some images to show, these are images of hair dryers and they are to be used on Remington packaging covers to show off the products to their full potential. All 3 images have very different lighting used which can be seen in the reflections on these shiny products.
It takes a lot of studio lighting skill and techniques to make the reflections look as good as these. Every photographer has their own way of working and controlling the reflections through lighting. I have as used some image stacking which is to make sure the whole product is in focus. If you don’t know then I will tell you that lots of photographers who get a shot in one photo may be leaving parts of the product out of focus, not that noticeable but could be an issue if the image is printed large. Than some technical details are more visible.
If you want to me to post about anything in particular then please let me know. I hope you enjoyed reading about my product photography.
I am showing a shot I did last month, in the brief it mentions that this coffee machine has a unique way of infusing the water into the coffee beans, one aspect which was required to capture was being able to see the underside of the water feed and the coffee beans from a single image. To capture the way the water comes from the water feed we needed to cut open the coffee machine, and to get the angle required in the brief I used a super wide angle lens and photographed the product at very close range. A super wide angle lens has a large range of what it can see concerning viewing angle from left to right, but also a wide viewing angle up and down, or vertical axis. This was the perfect lens for the job.
This final image image is a composite of 8 or 9 images each capturing different aspects, one image is of the water feed and coffee, one image is of the steam, and the other 6 or 7 images are different water steams, this is because water doesn’t always behave and go where you might want it to. All the images are put together using photoshop retouching. The final image looks great and the client was very impressed by what I had manged to capture for them.
This other example of technical photography is a good shot of a men’s foil shaver, it is a close-up shot showing the detail and the features clearly. The reason why this is a technical photograph is because even if you shot this close up on a camera setting set for maximum focus (F22) it would still not all be in focus, normally shots this close would lead to out of focus areas at the furthest part of the subject. To fix this issue and keep the whole product in focus I used a camera setting F11 which is even worse for the current issue of keep the shot in focus, I then took several shots all at different focus points, from the front the back. Lets say I took 4 photographs to get the whole product in focus, and I used 2 different light set-ups, that 8 shots in total all which need to be combined using photoshop retouching. The reason why I used F11 and not F22 is to get an overall sharper image, lets not mix up sharpness and focus….I hope I explain why a shot like this can be a technical problem for some photographers, but not for me, it just takes a bit of time, skill and experience.
I hope you liked my example of technical photography, if there is any other topics you wish me to show on my blog or a photography assignment you need a high end product photographer for please get in touch.
I am going to talk about photography that I have worked on for Restaurants and the way I work for best photographs that show the food in their best light. Get ready for the best tips to help you shoot better images for restaurants.
Start with the natural. One of the issues with photographing food in restaurants is the lighting. The lighting normally is set up to create a ambience for the customers who want a romantic meal. Most restaurants are dark with some window light, some side lights. Other restaurants don’t have any window light. I really like to include natural light when shooting food.
Balance the light. When I can I will use long exposure settings on the camera for food photography. This lets the daylight show on the food shots but being careful to balance the light with the flash. If the exposure is too long the daylight will appear too bright, the shot might look OK but some details of the food might disappear and become white areas with no detail. Best keep camera exposure to around 1/2 second and try using different power settings of the flash to get the correct exposure you are looking for.
Use a tripod. Nobody can hold a camera still enough for 1/2 sec, the image will appear to be slightly blurry. If you are doing long exposure shots the photographer will need to use a tripod.
Use a long lens. When I say long lens I am referring to the focal length, I would recommend using in-between 70-200 mm. It just so happens most lens manufacturers make this very type of Lens. I use a Nikkor 70-200 mm lens, an even better option would be using prime lenses. Prime lenses are the ones that don’t zoom, they have a fixed focal range, they usually produce a better image quality. The more noticeable difference is the quality of out-of-focus areas of the image, a good lens to use would be a 85 mm or 100 mm lens.
How shallow. Most food photography is taken at fairly close range as this helps the viewers to see the detail of the food. As a result, the background of the image will be blurred although this is not a bag thing it helps the look of the image. How much to blur the background or even the food is up to the photographer. It helps to add style to the image but if you blur the image too much the food itself may hardly be in focus and the clients can’t see the food clearly. The way the depth of field (blur) is controlled is by the F stops. I don’t recommend using an F stop as low as F/2.8 as I think a good balance is around F/8 to F/11. It does depend on how close you are to the food as the closer you are the more blur will appear. If you go too high with the F stop control, say F/16 or above, I think you are seeing too much of the background coming into focus.
ISO. Most photographers will know this but for better quality images the ISO should be as low as possible. My camera’s lowest ISO is ISO 100, some cameras can go lower than this. By using ISO 100 the image created will have little or no digital grain which usually looks bad. You can shoot on ISO 400 but I don’t recommend going higher than this.
Go Ultra wide. When shooting for restaurants, in my experience, the photographer is not only there to create images of the food but of the kitchen and dining area too. To make the interior look its best, I would use a ultra wide angle lens for this. It makes the room look bigger and it helps the look of the interior by adding a dynamic element.
Look for the unique. If there is anything unique about the restaurant make sure you get images of it. The restaurant industry is one of the most competitive industries there is aside from the photography industry…. Restaurants normally have something about them to help them stand out from the crowd. It could be features of the building, cocktail drinks that only they serve etc. I once captured a staff member because he got his accordion out and started playing for the customers.
If you follow these tips you will have some great results from photo-shoots at restaurants If these tips have helped please let me know and even share images with me so I can put them on my blog to show others.
I have been working on some food photography that I wanted to show. The shoot had a theme which was to use ingredients for Halloween, there are pumpkin seeds, pumpkin soup, pumpkin bread and other orange related food items. I worked with a food stylist which really helps the look of the final images, it is something I would recommend for food photography shoots. The images can be seen on Russell Hobbs social media channels.
One of the best bits about doing food photography is the texture of the food is really visible, and using shallow depth of field helps to focus the viewers attention to the food texture.
If there is a topic you would like me to cover in my photography blog then please let me know.
A few weeks ago I posted information and a sample image about some interior architecture photography I had done for a building company in Yorkshire. I have been working on the images and I have more work to show. I have been working hard on a selection of high quality photographs, lots of post-production work has really improved the look. When I showed the clients they said and I quote “Wow”. The interior design was very impressive, this always is going to help createa set of beauitful images.
For each shot I used a tripod, no external lighting was used. I bracketed the exposure which means I would under-expose the image by 2 stops, then I would take a shot with the correct exposure, then I would take a shot which is over-exposed by 2 stops. This enabled me to expose for the skylight which I would cut out and paste into the correctly exposed image, I also had the under images in-case I needed lighter areas, I would have the layers of each other in Photoshop, and used a layer mask, then paint either black or white to show the layer under or to hide the layer under.
Recently we were asked to photography a project which involved the contruction of a new lecture theatre at the University in Hull, we are based in Liverpool but we do have photography commissions around the country. The construction work was just being finished and was looking really impressive, the look of the building was going to be a factor in making some great photography.
We have bought some new photography equipment for our architecture photography services and this was our first opportunity to but it into use on a commercial project, we have a new Tamron lens for our Nikon cameras, it’s a 15-30mm F2.8 VR ultrawide angle lens. The lens has great reviews and is excepted as the best ultra-wide angle lens out of any of the camera brands, I wouldn’t wait to see how it was going to perfrom, and it didn’t let me down. The results from the lens speaks for itself, it helps to capture the entire room, sharp and contrasty images, very happy with the results.
The huge ceiling that had been put in the theatre has given the image a dramatic impact, the students who study there are fortunate to have such a facility in which to study, reminds my of my students days in Blackpool, the degree course had an international reputation but the facilities are noton this level.
We have recently been working on architecture photography and though we should share what we have been working on. This photography project is of a new building in in Hull called C4DI, it is a central hub where new tech comapnies and digital businesses can together in their own space and also work in communal spaces to meet and chat about their projects, it’s a great idea because people can bonuce ideas off each other and maybe even make new business contacts.
Like all the photography we do at Pack-Photo these photographs have had a few changes in post-production to improve the look of the image. It is one of our specialty areas, the skill is to be subtle, makes changes but don’t go too far because then it looks obvious that there have been changes made to the photograph.
Architecture photography is an area the Pack-Photo are moving into more and more, there is a lot of growth the in Northwest with new buildings being built all over, places like Liverpool and Manchester especially. I hope the readers of this blog are as excited as we are about the progress of the Northwest and the great architecture projects, and the fact that we have a service to help those areas.
Recently I was asked to do a photo-shoot for a business in Runcorn called Classic Screen. They are a company that makes srceen printing equipment, they are a small team of locals that have lots of knowledge about the screen printing industry. My job was to photograph the guys working at their job to show clients how the equipment is used, once those shots had been done then I was asked to photograph their products which are being sold on their website.
The building which the team work form is a converted church, it did make for interesting features for the photography. Also the building was a business which needed to continue making products as we did our photo-shoot, there was equipment and materials all around and this could of madeit more difficult to create images which look professional. The way to shoot this was to keep a consistant style of shooting with shallow depth of field, this is where the main subject is in focus and the background is out of focus. I used f4 mainly and I had my studio flash equipment set-up to control the light direction for each photograph.
The clients and the marketing company let me know that they are happy with the commercial photography that we produced for them, it is always good to have positive feedback from the clients. Let me know what you think about the commercial photography and if you want any topics tobe mentioned in our blog. Thanks for reading.
Last week we completed two commercial photography shoots for our new client ‘HRS’, they make security systems for airports and for construction sites, building sites etc. They have software products and also a hand scanner, finger print scanner amongst another products to help security at sites where numerous staff are coming in and out of the sites.
I was asked to take studio photography images of there products for our first shoot, I took the staff to the Liverpool photography studio that I use which is in a great area of Liverpool. The Baltic Triangle, it is the centre for most of Liverpool’s creative community and is a great place to work from. There is only 3 products to shoot but HRS asked for serval angles of each product, there was some challenging aspects to taking photographs of the hand scanner, the surface area where the hand is placed has a reflective surface which has a rainbox shine which at some angles is overwhelming. To solve this issue I used diffent lighting techniques and picked the best image to use. The final image was a combination of 3 photographs to make up one final image. It does require advanced post-production skills but this is something that we do on a daily basis as commercial photographers.
I hope you liked reading about our commercial photography work, please make requests if you want me to blog about any type of commercial photography and I will get back to you.
Today I want to show some of my new photographs. I was contacted by the client called ‘Exigere’ based in London. They have a new office and are currently expending, they needed corporate headshot photography of all the staff (30 in total) and images of the team working in the new office. I started the day by setting up the studio equipment, lights, camera, tripod in a office room which is where all the headshot were to take place. It wasn’t easy because the room was small, and it took a lottle bit of time to find the best angle for the corporate headshots.
The walls in the office were white which is a big help to any photographer, I could bounce the flash heads off the walls which creates a soft light which has alot of coverage, spreading light over the subject and across the room. My camera setting for this are F11, 1/125th sec, 100 ISO. Once all the photography equipment was setup I asked the staff to come in the office room a few at a time, this is so they can have a laugh with each other and take away some of the tension that people can have when they are asked to pose for a photographer. This process did take a long time because the staff do have a job to do.
Once all the staff had successfully had there corporate headshots taken care of I would use a telephoto lens to sit back and what the staff working at there desks, taking photographs of them from time to time. Again I was able to bouce lights off the walls, this photography commission was a long day, 8am until 6pm. The clients appricate the hardwork and are very happy with the results. The new website that has been built for them combined with the photography has really improved the look of there business. Exigere are happy which makes me happy.
I have been making more product photography images for Clients, this time I am showing a photography for one of my clients ‘Power Tech’, they are Liverpool based and they sell gym equipment. The shoot wasa challenge as the products are very big, too big to fit onto a normal white colorama background. I talked to the client before the shoot and came up with an idea about how to shoot this product on a white background. I used 2 white rolls of colorama side by side.
This way to shoot the products did take extra time in post-production, but it was worth it in the end. The clients are very happy with the photographs and I think we have brought out the best in their products. For this typeof photo-shoot Photoshop is my friend.
If you liked the topics from todays blog then leave a comment andlet me know what you would like included in this photography blog.
For this months update I am showing the latest industrial photography I have been working on. It was for a E-cigarette company in the Northwest called ‘Nictel’. Before the shoot took place I visited the factory and the team that worked on making the products, it was helpful to meet the people I would be working with and have some insight before the day of the photo-shoot.
On this shoot the client asked for stills photography and video, I will be showing my video work later once I have edited a nice showreel of my video production skills.
My aim is to make the factory process look as good as possible, whilst aiming for a photographic style which suits the client and my photography portfolio. The images look clean, graphic, polished style which works for the type of photography I produce. After I spent a day in the factory taking the photographs I can then start the post-production process, these images have about 1 hour each where I will make changes to the image in Photoshop.
Let me know what you think of the Industrial Photography, I will be glad to hear feedback from the readers of the blog.
I have lots of new photography work to show, I am starting off by showing some work I did for Sigvaris, they are a producer of medical stockings and need new images for their catalogue and for marketing use. They asked me to shoot for their brand, they needed a mixture of images totaling at 108 final studio images. I completed the images in a day and a half studio shoot, the post-production took about 7 days in total.
Sigavris wanted a more realistic look for the shoot, this meant they chose regular people, some in their 70’s to model the products rather than slim supermodels who are not the target market for there products. They have let me know that they are happy with the images provided and of the service overall offered by Pack-Photo. I have some examples to show you,if you like them please leave a comment.
I don’t normally show my personal photography but I does give clients an idea of my photography skills. I am showing a photograph I did when I was in York, It is a small castle on a small mound in the Center of York City, formerly used as a prison. It is a well known landmark and I thought I was definitely worth taking a stunning photo of it. I have done a lot of Photoshop retouching to it.
I have removed the handle which was leading up the stairs, I also removed the handle which follows the top of the castle. I have removed a few tourists out of the image and I have replaced the door which a image I have of a church door. I have tweaked the levels and contrast in Photoshop. It took a long time to do but it was really worth it. I will be putting it into a stock photography library if anyone wants to make use of my work.
If you are interested in seeing more of my architecture photography from York or from around the Northwest then send me a message and I will update the blog with more beautiful photographs like this one.
Today I will show you some commercial food photography, Liverpool is a great place for creatives to work, I have been reading articles and blogs about how highly Liverpool is rated in creatives circles. I Have the pleasure of being in the creative industries and I get to work with other creatives. This food photography shoot was one where a Liverpool Marketing company approached me to shoot for a local Liverpool restaurant.
The shoot consisted of photographing interior shots of the restaurant, I did a range of wide angled shots and some close up details. We then set up for the food photography, I had an idea of how the images should look. I did some test shots first to make sure everything was looking good. I decided to go for a shallow depth of field to focus on the food, the background goes out of focus but you can still tell what is there on some images.
The best image in my judgement was the image of the Sea bass on a vegetable soup, I love the texture of the cooked fish and the colours of the soup work so well. This is one of my best food photography images and I am very proud of it. Please let me know what you think of Pack-Photo’s photography, and if you require food photography for your business please get in touch and we will be happy to talk about your image needs.
Recently I have done a Preston Product Photography commission, Northwest England for anyone who doesn’t know where Preston is. I was asked to do some invisible mannequin photography of clothing which is to be used on an e-commerce website. It is a photography service that we offer and are happy to take on.
There is a trick to getting the invisible look, firstly you photography the clothes on a normal mannequin, then you turn the clothing inside out and photograph the the mannequin again. You take the two photographs into Photoshop, you use the entire photograph of the front normal mannequin image but you only use the neck line of the rear or inside out image, using high level retouching skills you combine the two photographs together. Simple…
If you have an e-commerce business and you need premium product photography than please get in touch and we can talk about your images needs, I hope you enjoyed reading about my photography services.
Thank you for taking an interest in my photography blog. This time I will be showing you a few photographs from a shoot I did last week. It was for a local Liverpool business called ‘Intratech’. They contacted my through a marketing company to produce a set of images to show off there products which is heat lamps for the car painting industry.
We did different type product images for them, some are white background images to clearly show the products for leaflets and websites. We also worked on some location photography images as well, showing the products in a real world situation. We set up the shoot in a car painters near where the clients business is based. I have done some tweaks to the final images in Photoshop, I do offer high level post-production services to all my clients.
The images turned out well, just how I wanted them to…and the clients are very happy and have already booked another product photography shoot with Pack-Photo. The paint booth worked out for the images because it was fairly clean for a busy car painters booth, and it has its own lighting which was just about bright enough for my cameras to work with.
If you need product photography please get in touch and we can chat about your image needs.
This week I am showing a drinks photography image that I did not long ago. As you can see it is an example of a before and after the Photoshop retouching. When you look close at the detail you can see how much work has gone into the post-production side of a photography shoot. This amount of work takes around 1.5 hours in Photoshop, but when you need 12 final images the time soon adds up. When seeing the before and after photographs it shows the skill level we have at Pack-Photo and the experience level needed to do high end product and drinks photography. If you like still life photography or you are in need of a photographer to create some premium still life images for your business then have a look around the Pack-Photo website and give me a call to talk about your image needs.
I have recently completed a photography commission to shoot the product and location photography for a new Liverpool Brand called ‘Hunt & Hustle’. It produces scissors designed for barbers, they look really nice and are set to make a big impact in the industry. We started the shoot by arriving at the location set which was a small barbers on Larks Lane, Liverpool. I set up my photography equipment, bouncing light off the ceiling, using f/8 to get slight depth of field. There was some technical trickery involved as the lights used in the barber shop had a strong orange cast. All flash lights are daylight balanced so the mixture of light sources would need to be addresses, I used a white balance which was mainly balanced towards the daylight, there was lighting coming in through the window as well.
The shoot was the first time a company has asked my to shoot video as well as photography. I wanted the opportunity to enhance my video production skills so I agreed to take on this role as well as the photography. Switching from video mode to photography mode was difficult. It is something which needs plenty of practice to perfect. After shooting for around 3 hours we packed up all the photography equipment and headed to the photography studio to carry on with the product photography side of the shoot.
The studio shots required the products to be shot on a white background, wood, grass/moss, water and stone. There was going to be a large amount of images taken because of all the different backgrounds being used. As we started the product shoot we discovered that the stone background was not right for the branding so we decided to leave those shots out, for the shots of the product on water we did experiment shooting the product in water and having it balanced on a small block which would be hidden by the camera. It worked, but when the water was still you couldn’t tell that it was water, it looked like a flat reflective sheet. When I made ripples in the water to make it visible to the camera the product got wet, it didn’t look right.
I had to think fast and knew that I could take shots of the scissors and then drop them onto a shot of the water which had ripples, I did the two shots separately, taking photographs of the product, then of the water as I added ripples and combine the two shots in Photoshop. The results speak for themselves, great images.
After the product photography shoot we went back to the barber shop and did more location photography, the break gave a chance the shop owner to keep some customers happy be carrying on providing his service. It was a long day but was totally worth it. Such a good job. A big thanks goes to Liverpool Marketing Company who commissioned me to shoot for them.
I hope you like hearing about me and the work that I do. Keep coming back to hear more about Pack-Photo and the business that is Commercial Photography.