The product only tells part of the story, with an effective background complementing it to create stunning, evocative shots. As a result of the importance placed on backgrounds, we’ve put together some interesting, stylish and unusual options that every product photographer should consider.
We’ve broken it down into three distinct sections to make it easier to navigate for a packshot studio or photographer who wants to learn more. These sections are food, clothing and jewellery.
Whilst it is important for a packshot studio to take some shots on plain white backgrounds, particularly because of the requirements for e-commerce, coloured backgrounds offer so much more. They are a fantastic way to interact with the products themselves, either complementing it or contrasting. No matter the choice, they should always be used to tell the story or make the product stand out.
Metal and vinyl
We’ve grouped these materials together because they offer such a wide variety of backgrounds for you to use. Metal trays allow you to make the most of darker shades, often showing more weathered and worn looks from scratches and stains. Moving on to vinyl, this is a popular choice for food as there are so many varieties to choose from. Whether you go for marble designs or solid colours, they help a product photographer to get creative and depending on the type you choose, minimise issues such as reflection.
This should seem fairly obvious to a product photographer or packshot studio but when shooting clothing products, the most valuable background you can choose is a contextual one. One of the most important drivers for customers buying a product is being able to see it being used, as this helps them to imagine them wearing that particular item of clothing or outfit.
This type of background is a little more generic than the others on the list but when it comes to clothing product photos, it’s a great option. Consider taking photographs outside, in real-world scenarios using the world around you. This not only allows people to imagine themselves in the image and products but offers an unrivalled variety to choose from.
Every packshot studio will have a range of fabrics to hand, whether that is leather, silk etc and as a product photographer, it is important to keep a selection of types and colours. When working with jewellery, fabrics allow you to create different levels of depth, mood and emotion that hard surfaces cannot. One of the most popular is silk, thanks to its shape, texture and link to the romantic ideals of jewellery.
Wood and rocks
In an effort to consider all product and brand types, we’ve put wood and rocks on the list of key backgrounds to use. To start with, they are widely available and very cheap, even free if you know the right places to look. Natural products like this have unique shapes and textures that you can rarely recreate manually, working to tell the story in a very different way to other backgrounds.