As we all can recognize, product photography (“merch” photos, in trade lingo) is a mainstay of the advertising business. I made my living for many years putting consumer products in their best light — adventure gear and clothing for Mountain Equipment Co-op, toasters for Sears, lingerie for Eaton’s, tractors and snowblowers for Canadian Tire — but that job hasn’t been a central part of my repertoire for several years … unless you count illustrations for my websites.
And that’s exactly the task I’ve set myself in recent days. With a new, improved shop
on the horizon ( you can’t see it all at the moment, but you can now open! Stop by and sign up for news and/or spread the word on social media) I set up a makeshift studio in the dining room, seeing as the studio space is still jammed with unorganized and unopened boxes from the recent move.
The dining table became the base for tabletop shots of my greeting card inventory. The setup is nothing fancy. I used white seamless, supported by a Savage “Port-A-Stand”. The rear light, bounced back onto the seamless by a 32-inch Photoflex Multidisk reflector (white side), is a vintage 500w/s Elinchrom monobloc studio strobe, fitted with an empty grid holder, at ¼-power. Main light is a 250 w/s Elinchrom, also set to ¼-power, with a 12˝x16˝ Chimera “Mini” box. Small reflectors — one silver, one white — fill in shadows and light falloff on the front.
Studio camera is a Nikon D-800, with the 70-200 f2.8, supported on a Gitzo tripod with FLM 38-FT “Centerball” head. Metering is accomplished with a Sekonik Flashmate L-308-B, as seen above. Again, nothing special. Exposure was 1/160-sec @ f.16.
Now I have to edit the results to approximate colours and tone and clean up the background. There will be layers.
Anyway, I hope you’ll stop back to check out the new shop. As I say, I’ve been beavering away in the background here, since I returned from my excellent English adventure.