Doing a product photoshoot? Then it is time to prepare your products, and I’m here to help. The best way to prepare your products for a photoshoot is to follow this guide.
Importance of product preparation for a successful photoshoot
Ever wondered why your images don’t look the way you imagined?
Chances are your products and background needed a little preparation before their photoshoot!
Visuals sell. Like it or not, stunning images can make or break your branding.
A few smudges here, a fingerprint there, and voilà! Your products can go from hero to zero.
So now that you know; let’s get your products ready for their close-ups.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
First, Let’s Grab Some Product…
It helps to know which products to grab.
My first tip is to write down every product you want to have photos.
Use that list as a checklist to assemble everything you will need.
I also recommend you grab a few extras in case your photographer needs them.
At minimum you should provide two of each product.
Assessing Your Products
Evaluating the condition and quality of your products
Now, let’s start by playing detective.
Get out your magnifying glass and scrutinize those products like Sherlock Holmes on a branding mission.
Is that a scratch? A dent? Or a smudge?
Evaluating the condition and quality of your products is like a first date – you’re getting to know them, warts and all.
Identifying any imperfections or flaws that need attention
Perfection is in the eye of the beholder.
But nobody likes a blurry logo or a chipped corner screaming for attention in product images.
Spotting those imperfections early means you can give them the TLC they deserve.
Prioritizing product selection for the photoshoot
Not all products are created equal.
Some are destined for stardom, others for supporting roles.
In photos, problems becomes the center of attention.
Don’t hesitate to find a better representative from your stock.
Little flaws aren’t noticed when buying a product, but they are when photographed!
Cleaning and Prepping Your Products
Thoroughly cleaning to removing dust, fingerprints, and smudges
It’s time to roll up your sleeves and play product beautician.
Dust? Gone. Fingerprints? Vanished. Smudges? Cleaned.
With a touch of care, those products will be ready for their close-ups.
Choosing appropriate cleaning techniques for different materials
Not all products enjoy the same spa treatment.
Leather needs love. Metal demands might. Glass? Gentle, please.
Let’s talk about some specific items to give you an example.
To be sure your apparel is ready:
• Using a model? Make sure prepped items that are in the model’s size.
• No model? Bring the smallest size available so it is easier to style it within the frame.
• Check every item to make sure the product and its backup have no stains, tears or defects.
• Steam/Iron. You don’t want a wrinkle or crease in sight. You may want to hire a stylist to handle this so the shoot can keep moving.
• Lint roll before the camera starts clicking. This quick once-over will collect any stray threads, hairs, or dust.
To make sure your jewels sparkle:
• Have Duplicates, you never know when you might lose a stone or an earring!
• Use A Loupe to inspect for missing stones or other defects because the camera will pick them up.
• Polish the jewelry so it looks shiny and beautiful
• Check your boxes or packaging. They should be as camera-ready as the jewelry it holds.
• Handle with lint-free gloves after you’ve cleaned your boxes/packaging & jewelry. Avoid fingerprints.
Food and Beverage
Let’s make sure your food & beverage products look delicious:
• Food and beverage items can be the hardest to work with. Always have several versions of each product item.
• Need To Prep Food? For your products to look as delicious as they taste, hire a food prep and a stylist. It isn’t cheap but you will make the best use of the time involved in the photoshoot. Plus the images will come out of the collaboration better than you could have hoped.
• Using Raw Ingredients? Get extras of everything. Especially if they need to be cut. These should be sourced as close to the shoot as possible so everything is fresh.
Considerations for Product Packaging and Labels
Reviewing and optimizing product packaging for visual impact
The packaging is more than a protective shell; it’s an important representative of your brand.
Ensuring labels and branding are clear and legible
Make sure your labels are straight, clear, legible, and wearing their Sunday best.
Removing or minimizing distracting stickers or price tags
Price tags and stickers are evil in world of professional product photography.
Remove them. Minimize them. And clean off the adhesive too!
Let your product’s true beauty shine through, unmarred by sticky distractions.
Pristine Products = Money Saved on Editing
Here’s a little secret:
The cleaner and more pristine your products are, the less retouching your photographer will have to do.
And less retouching means what?
You guessed it: Saving money on additional editing fees!
Think of it as a 2-for-1 deal. You get gorgeous, ready-for-the-spotlight products, and your wallet gets to breathe a sigh of relief.
Prepping surfaces and eliminating distractions for a clean presentation
This is a DIY tip. If you are taking your own commercial photos, prepping surfaces is like setting the stage for a Broadway show.
I can’t tell you how many times I look at amateur images and see problems.
It may be chipped paint, dirt or dings on the wall in the background.
Another common mistake is something in the image that doesn’t belong there.
So check before you shoot.
Everything needs to be in place, or your products might throw a tantrum!
Styling and Props
Planning the desired aesthetic and styling for your products
Ever seen a product so well-styled it looks like it walked out of a fashion magazine?
Planning the styling is like being a fashion designer for your brand.
You want chic? Casual? Vintage?
Whatever your heart desires, make it shine.
Selecting props that enhance the product’s visual appeal and story
Props are the unsung heroes of a great photoshoot.
Think of them as the backup singers to your product’s Beyoncé.
Here’s a starter pack for prop ideas:
Books and Magazines: Add a touch of intellect.
Plants and Flowers: For that fresh, organic feel.
Textured Fabrics: Silk, denim, or wool? Choose your vibe.
Kitchen Utensils: If you’re shooting food, these can be appetizing additions.
Vintage Accessories: For a hint of nostalgia.
The options are endless. Time to unleash your inner artist.
Balancing simplicity and relevance in prop selection
Now, before you raid a prop store like a kid in a candy shop, let’s pause.
Too much of a good thing can turn into visual chaos.
Balance is key.
Think of your props as the supporting cast – there to enhance, not overshadow.
Remember, it’s still your product’s show!
Need Inspiration? Hit the Pinterest Boards!
From boho-chic to sleek and modern, you’ll find a world of ideas to suit your product’s style on Pinterest.
Gather ideas, pin them, and share them with your product photographer.
A picture is worth a thousand words, but a well-curated Pinterest board is pure communication gold.
Handling Reflective and Shiny Surfaces
Reflective and shiny surfaces can be stunning, but they can also throw a curveball into the mix.
Here’s how to play it safe:
Dealing with challenges of photographing reflective or shiny products
Got a product that likes to shine and reflect everything in its vicinity? That’s great for a disco party, but not so much for a photoshoot.
Make sure your photographer knows if your products are reflective or have shiny surfaces.
By giving them a heads-up, they’ll brush up on their photography ninja skills.
How Photographers Handle Reflective and Shiny Surfaces
Now, you might be wondering, how do photographers deal with these mirror-like marvels?
Minimizing Unwanted Reflections: They’ll adjust angles, lighting, and avoid appearing in the reflection.
Using Proper Lighting Techniques: A photographer’s toolkit includes softboxes, diffusers, and reflectors to control glare and reflections like a pro.
They Use Masks: Masking off the product is another way to provide a beautiful, blemish free reflection.
So if your products are unique, and their reflective nature is a part of their charm … let your photographer know in advance, so they can turn challenges into beautiful visual art.
Showcasing Product Details
Your product’s details and textures make your product unique.
Want detail shots?
Here’s how to showcase them like a proud parent:
The Magnifying Glass Is Your Friend
The devil really is in the details.
Grab a magnifying glass or loupe, and examine your product like a detective on a mission.
Examine the details and textures.
Are they crisp and exactly what you want to show?
If not, it’s tweak time.
Ensuring your photographer knows what to focus on
Make sure your shot list requests any detail or texture shots.
That way, nothing gets lost in translation.
When you share your insights … watch the magic happen.
How Photographers Capture the Fine Details
Curious about how photographers make those details pop? Here’s a sneak peek:
Utilizing Macro Photography Techniques: It’s like giving your product a close-up interview on the red carpet.
Ensuring Clarity and Sharpness: Precision focusing, lighting mastery, and some secret photographer’s sauce help capture every nook and cranny.
Your photographer’s skillset will ensure those intricate details become the star of the show.
Pack And Ship Your Items Carefully
You’ve spent a lot of time on making sure your products are perfect.
If you are shipping the product to your photographer, you’ll want them to arrive in the same condition.
Wrap each item in tissue and then surround it with bubble wrap so it won’t get damaged or scratched in transit.
Don’t over do on tape for the bubble wrap, you want it to hold, but be easy for the photographer to open.
Pack the box carefully so items won’t get crushed.
Then add styrofoam peanuts (the biodegradable kind) to keep things in place.
Protect Your Shipment
Be sure to add insurance and tracking for this delivery.
If anything happens, you will want those!
Careful packaging & shipping means that your products will look their absolute best for their glamour shot.
Product Arrangement and Composition
Product arrangement and composition can be like hosting a party.
You want things to look great and at the same time, you need the layout to be inviting and functional.
Here’s your visual marketing guide to party planning, photoshoot style:
Planning the arrangement and composition of multiple products
You don’t have to be Michelangelo to sketch out a basic composition.
A simple doodle or rough images taken with your smartphone will help.
They are enough to give your photographer a glimpse of what you have in mind.
Balancing visual hierarchy and spacing for a pleasing composition
Think of your products as the cast of a hit play.
Who are the lead actors, and who are the supporting characters?
Balance is key. You don’t want one product hogging the spotlight like an overeager karaoke singer.
Experimenting with different angles and perspectives for variety
Variety is the spice of life, and it’s also the zest in a promotional campaign.
Play around with different arrangements, but stay open to your photographer’s input.
Speaking of which…
Collaborating with the Photographer
Ever heard the phrase “Two heads are better than one”?
In the world of photoshoots, it’s more like, “A marketing director, solo entrepreneur, and photographer combined create pure magic.”
Open communication and discussing the desired outcomes
You and your photographer are on the same team.
Share your catalog images, branding goals, and desired outcomes.
The more they know, the better they can bring your vision to life.
Sharing visual references and mood boards for clarity
Words can be tricky. Images, not so much.
Share a Pinterest board or visual references with your photographer.
It’s like giving them a roadmap to your creative brain.
Welcoming the photographer’s expertise and seeking their input
Your photographer knows a thing or two about making products look good.
Welcome their expertise, seek their input, and watch your photoshoot go from good to “Oh wow!”
Teamwork Makes the Dream Work
And there you have it! By:
• collaborating closely with your photographer, and
• planning your composition,
you’re setting the stage for a photoshoot that tells your product’s story.
Bringing Your Product Photoshoot Vision to Life: Final Thoughts
There you have it.
The process you need to prepare your products for a photoshoot!
Inspect every nook and cranny of your products and packaging.
Sketch out your compositions ideas.
And working hand-in-hand with a skilled professional product photographer.
Because visuals sell, that’s why.
Your products are not items; they’re stars waiting for their moment in the spotlight.
And this guide is your ticket to the front row.
Soon you will dazzle the world with your new marketing photos.
Ready to Take the Next Step?
Still have questions or a burning desire to discuss your upcoming product photoshoot? I’ve got you covered.
Fill out the form below and arrange a free, no-obligation discovery call.
Your products have waited long enough.
Let’s turn them into superstars!
Related Articles To Help In Your Photoshoot Preparations.
Now that you know how to prepare your products for a photoshoot, here are two more articles that can help you get ready for you upcoming shoot.
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