Shooting products against a pure white (255,255,255) background, can be achieved using the pen tool in Photoshop, but what if you want to find an alternative way to create the same stunning images, but without the hassle of spending so much time in post-production? Dustin Dolby from Workphlo, has created an insightful online tutorial which shows just how simple it can be to create this effect, with minimal gear and maximum time saved. With the help of a couple of speed lights, strategically placed white and black card and a kit lens, Dustin is able to demonstrate just how easy is can be to control and shape lighting, to achieve the desired effect.
When photographing a whole project of catalogue work, time can become your number one enemy. The often manageable task of “cleaning” images with a pen tool can become increasingly monotonous when you are dealing with a whole product pack of shots in post-production. With the help of some very well-placed black card and shooting with speed lights into an umbrella and through a diffusion panel (with a soft box in front), the sharp edges can be maximized. This is in stark contrast to the often blurry and unnatural looking edges which can result when using the pen tool. The use of white and black card can help to create solid shadows and manipulate the lighting to ensure the best result possible.
Retaining edge detail is one very important aspect when attempting to shoot a catalogue product against a white background. Dustin’s tutorial demonstrates the many different effects which can be achieved by adding and removing card and how it can transform a mediocre shot, instantly to a high end one which clients will love.