Are you in e-commerce photography? Have you recently asked to shoot a macro product and have no idea about what it is and how it is done? Well, no need to panic we are here to help. Macro photography is not different from the other types of photography once you get the basics clear. In this article, we will get into the details of how a macro product photography is done with few easy steps.
Let’s get into the basics of macro product photography
There are many good options available for the macro photography but the most popular models come in focal lengths between 90-105mm, and have 1:1 magnification. Shorter focal lengths such as 50mm or 60mm are also available which have shorter walking distance this means you have to get very close to your subject. The lens with 150-200mm range is the most expensive. If you make use of an APS-C or Micro Four Thirds camera, you will get your subject magnified even more at 1x, as the sensor is smaller.
If you are shooting for very small products like a tiny bobby pin or button earrings the focal plane will be extremely narrow – a couple of millimetres or so. Thus, you will have to set your aperture to at least F16 to have a chance of having most of your product in focus. With a small aperture like that and need for high shutter speed, a flash is a must. Any kind of flash can be used for the macro photography, even the built-in pop-up flash of cheaper DSLRs work well. Also, when you are shooting at F2.8 or F4, and there is plenty of sunlight, there is no need to use flash.
If you are using any kind of flash in your macro photography, use of diffuser is must. A diffuser is nothing but any semi-transparent, white colored material which you can put between the flash and your product. The use of diffuser in macro photography makes the size of the light from the flash much larger, and thus the light in your photos will look less harsh, and the colors will come out better. A normal white paper, thermocol or vacuum cleaner filter can also be used as a diffuser.
When you are doing macro photography, you need to learn how to focus manually because autofocus is not fast enough to keep up with the jitters and shaking that comes with 1:1 magnification. Also for the macro product photography, you can make use of tripods. But if you want to shoot a product outdoors, then the use of tripods is not a good idea. As the motion in the surrounding can make the image blurry. The best method to achieve a great focus on an outdoor macro photography is to hold the camera with both hands, and preferably anchor your elbows against your sides or legs, to give even more stability. Then turn your focusing ring to approx. magnification you want to get. Then focus, not by touching the focusing ring, but by walking gently towards the subject, while trying to snap the photo exactly at the right moment.
The angle you shoot the product in is very important in terms of macro photography. The most common mistake that a newbie in macro photography make is to conveniently snap the photo from where you stand, at a 45-degree angle towards the products. This will make your photo look like boring just like the other newbie photographers. Experiment with the angles, try to uncommon angles such as shooting the products from the side, from the front, or from below. Make use of your flip out screen if you don’t want to get your clothes dirty by being on the ground.
As a newbie to the macro photography, you might think that “the bigger the product in the frame, the cooler the photo.” But the truth is that you can often find a more beautiful or interesting photo if you back off a little, and let the product look just as small as it actually is.
- SHARP OBJECTS
In the field of e-commerce, there might be a time when you would not be able to get the best picture and find solutions for the same on YouTube. You may find many videos that use hacks such as toothpaste, sharp knives or lighter flames to get a better picture. But, we recommend that you never put any of these objects in front of your expensive macro lens. Doing so is only useful to attract attention and encourage visitors to click on a link to a particular web page or click on the YouTube thumbnail.
These are the few easy tips that you can use for macro product photography and make your product look exceptional and incredible. Once you are clear with the basics, it will be easy for you to become a professional macro product photographer in the field of e-commerce.