As a product photographer, your immediate response to this question would probably be a confident yes! However, it is always a question worth asking as we believe every photographer and packshot studio should take the time to reflect and improve. Take a moment to look back at some of your photographs and think about whether you get distracted or annoyed by something minor in the background.
You’ve been asked to provide your services as a product photographer and decided on the chosen subject, whether a range of products or a specific product. Now what you should do is start to look around and behind the subject itself.
Is there an interesting building, tree or river that is in the background but slightly obscured by the subject? Would it look even better if you moved your position to show off more of the background? These are questions we should always ask because as a packshot studio, you want to be telling a story for every product and the background and the props within it may just give the image that extra quality to help it stand out.
Let’s say you’ve been asked to photograph a model wearing a client’s latest range of clothing in an outdoor location. As a product photographer, you may sometimes take a photograph where the subject looks great but there is something that doesn’t feel quite right and it may be as simple as the perspective or angle is ever so slightly off.
A slight change of vantage point may help fix the perspective, but suddenly you have something else in the background that is causing distraction from the story you wish to tell. So perhaps another slight move to the left or right will resolve this. It is all about small adjustments until you find that perfect shot.
One of the biggest reasons for any product photographer or packshot studio to consider this question is to save time when it comes to editing your images. We appreciate that the editing software out there right now has so many fantastic features, that you can resolve some of the issues mentioned above.
However, by thinking about your background with a little more care, you can stop these errors from happening in the first place and save a lot of time when you get to the editing phase of your project, as well as a lot of stress if you’re not as strong at editing.
Paying more attention to the background and your surroundings in product photography is not about changing your approach or losing sight of the most important thing, the subject. It is about getting into the mindset that even small changes to the composition of your shot, the perspective from which you take the photo can really transform your photographs to a new level. This idea works for both landscape and portrait photographs, for all kinds of product photography and that is why we feel it is an important question for us to answer.