Smartphones like iPhones and Android phones has already got so powerful and can produce the quality outputs for which you would need at least a digital camera few years back. Today we are going to discuss how we can use iPhone S4/S5/S6 or later for product photography also apply ghost mannequin photography. Well, a DSLR camera should be the perfect candidate for this. But if we do not have a DSLR camera available readily for our work, we can shoot with our smartphones confidently. IPhones or other smartphones has a plus point. We always carry it with us. These are easily portable devices.
Where Is This Kind of Product Photography Applicable?
IPhone product photography is good enough for e-commerce websites. Online product sale through the web stores are growing rapidly. As a result, a load of product images are required for online display of the products. Sometimes, you may not find a professional photographer for your product photography. In that situation, the iPhone in your pocket can come to save you. With the improvements of camera technology of the recent smartphones, it is possible to do product photography with your smartphone for virtually any media except for the too large pictures for banners and billboards.
Things You Need
- An iPhone
You already got an iPhone or Android or other smartphone which has high quality camera. IPhone 4/S, 5S, 6S or higher will do excellent for your product photos.
- Tripod for iPhone
You need to buy the tripod for your phone. Tripod will help to omit blurriness caused by the shake of your hands while shooting. Most of the high end phones have stabilizer facility. But tripod will make sure that you are taking unshaken, crisp, and clear pictures. Do some web search to select a tripod within your budget?
We will use a white background most of the time. Most of the products stand out on a light colored background like white or light grey. We can easily make the background with white seamless paper.
- A table or high top furniture
To work with ease you can set all the setup on a table or a higher surface. Place the total setup near the door or window if you opt for the natural light source.
Lighting is a very crucial factor for any type of photography. It is the heart of photography. For lighting we have 3 options. One is to use the natural light source i.e. the sunlight. Place the product near the door or window. Morning and afternoon is the best time to utilize the sunlight. 2nd option is to use normal household lights like table lamps etc. in an innovative way. Like you can use some white cardboards to reflect the light toward the product or object. Same cardboards can be used to block the distracting lights coming toward the phone. 3rd option is to use photography studio lighting setup. Needless to say that natural lighting is free. Household lights are the cheapest. If you go for the photography studio lighting option, you will need some initial setup cost. Depending on your budget, choose a lighting setup. If you do some research on lighting for photography, you will be able to produce bright and shiny images with any kind of lighting setup I mentioned here. The best shortcut is to start shooting right now and analyze the outputs for different gear positioning and setup, and phone app setup. When you will get some experience with some experimentation, you will start to become a pro for photographing with smartphones.
- Camera+ app
It will be better to download Camera+ app. It will give us more control over the way we like our products to be photographed. We will be able to easily set the photography variables like aperture, shutter speed and ISO manually. We can set the focus to any area of the composition by tapping on the phone screen. We will be able to shoot on the desired exposure to suit our need.
A lens for phone
If we are not tight in budget, we can buy a lens for the phone camera. This will provide us more freedom. We can place our camera (phone) to a suitable place and shoot utilizing the optical zoom of the lens. If our product is small like the jewelry etc. we can use a narrow angle lens, so that the product will not look distorted in the photo.
Setting up Everything
- Set Your Phone To Airplane Mode
This will help to avoid unwanted interruptions.
- Auto-lock Feature Should Be Set To Never
This will prevent the phone from going to standby mode.
- Set Your Light Sources Appropriately
If you are not using natural light source, to get professional output with smooth shadows, you need to use two light sources. For a simple lighting setup, place the light sources at around 45 degree angle to the object. One at the left side, the other at the right side. Fill light should be a lower power light than the key light.
Now it’s Time to Shoot
Everything is set up now for starting to shoot. First take few sample shots to adjust the lighting and other setups. Fine tune the Camera+ app settings, also. If you are getting the pictures as per your expectation. Your settings are okay. So why wait… keep clicking… After shooting if you need some image editing or image manipulations, do it using Photoshop. If you cannot manage to find time for photo editing, you can take help from a reputed image manipulation service providing company. Experts of a good graphic design company can make your product image to shine on the website. An attractive image will increase the sell of your product.