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Behind the Scenes: White Backdrops for Product Photography

Hello Thursday, April 5th! May I ask how you got here so quickly? Well this week is zooming by for me. I still have so much to accomplish before the weekend when I get to see my brother, go out and take pictures with him and his girlfriend, and have a big Easter feast. I'm really looking forward to the family time but oh, so much has to get done beforehand. Feeling slightly overwhelmed this morning but hopefully after crossing off some big things on the to-do list today, I'll feel better.

Today I want to share a Behind the Scenes post and let you in on a few of my tips for using white backdrops in product photography. This is the setup I used for my Ombré Pennant Flags DIY last week. 

Sometimes I like shooting products on textured surfaces, like this weathered bench you see above, and other times I like simple, white surfaces. Choosing your backdrop and surfaces is up to you and a lot of it has to do with your own style and the mood you are trying to capture in the pictures. You also want to take into account what compliments the product best. Your product should stand out and be the focus. Sometimes with textures, your product can get lost in all the visual detail which is something you should watch out for.

For these product shots, I placed two white foamcore boards outside and photographed my product on them. The boards are texture free so all of the focus was on the bright colors of my flags...which is exactly what I wanted to accomplish. Not only are the boards functioning as backdrops but since they are white, light is bouncing off of them, eliminating shadows and making the entire scene brighter. I 100% recommend working in natural light like I did here. Pictures always look better (in my opinion). I shot this when there was a lot of ambient light. It was in the later afternoon so the sun wasn't direct (which causes harsh shadows) but there was still a lot of available light. A few hours before sunset is always a good time to take pictures. It is known as the "golden hours."

Again I'll stress the worth-it investment of a few pieces of foamcore. I use mine all the time and it is an easy and cheap way to improve your pictures. Sometimes I just prop them up on the sides to use as light reflectors, like I did here, and other times I use them as backdrops like I did for this project. They are handy and flexible tools. Better product photography doesn't necessarily have to break the bank. A few simple changes can make a big difference.

Do you take product photos for your blog or your handmade business? What are your favorite techniques for better pictures?  

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Reader Comments (1)

I'm really enjoying your behind the scenes posts! I use foam core like this when I take my blog pictures too, and it works wonderfully. Thanks for sharing such great tips!

April 9, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKimberly Jones

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