Shoot: Textiles - Baby Clothes


Tabletop Photography Fundamentals


Lesson Info

Shoot: Textiles - Baby Clothes

So if in italian bob will come up and I noticed that there is also maybe another wardrobe situation happening this is beau tie's migrating growing popping up in odd places and bob seems to have found a found a bowtie I lost mine somewhere and s so here's the thing way have this these baby for baby clothing that came in that was really adorable baby clothing and one of the things that I saw also when I came in the other day was this this picnic table lee you know, outside fancy looking problem so I had an idea in my head that said I want to see these baby clothes pinned to a clothes line hanging in front of that picket fence so thie idea is that we're going to use as much natural light as we can and then john has set up a stroke that will trigger and kind of maybe create a little bit of sunlight up in the corner. So the thie clothing here that we have which is this I think this one was thiss one was meant for jim this's for baby, this is for a baby jimmy's abi anna apple and this was my...

favorite piece this was really good this is really great and I think this will be the one that I'd like like you see in the center of the frame and then we also have this little one here and we have some other textiles that will work with afterwards, but I think we'll try to execute this shot first john is well briefed on exactly kind of what we want to try to accomplish and if we get this done and we're really happy with the shots, I want to put this into action because what when clothing is hanging on clothing is hanging on a line outside being able to add the element of wind and try to get them to at least be drifting into the side would be a really cool shot to get so I'm not really giving you anything hard to try or anything, but I think you're up for the challenge, so I think we're about ready and you can we don't need the table for this first shot you basically we need uh we have clothes line clothes, pins we have our fence and we have our our clothing so I would try toe get started you have any questions before we even get started? Not yet not yet okay, send so I will leave it to you at this point to get started and I will interject waiting I'm doing like my dad when I'm cleaning up before any everybody's finished so a cz we start here while they get the initial project set up do we have any questions to kind of get us going this is just a follow up from the last segment yeah it's from tell me more how careful do you have to be to make sure that the supporting props don't define the use or feel of the jewelry? And then I have a follow up after that? I think that definitely has to do with focus and lighting because if you are lighting directing your viewer to look at your subject directly, all of those elements should be framed in a way that kind of direct the eye to the object that you need to be seen objects I mean, we had that situation right where a profit was overpowering the and it's about identifying that property over, you know, it was a little bit too busy it was a little bit too powerful for the object that we were trying to show with it, so we had to eliminate it and do something else. So I think you have to use both of those things both your technical elements and your and your instincts as a stylist. So I wanted to know personally what's the most unique or strangest property of every is oh ah unique or strange problem? Well, I mean, I've put things in photographs that don't necessarily have anything to do with it, but it was just because of their color or their shape, so I mean, like I was using thes really goofy looking kind of glasses like kid's glasses in a very sophisticated kind of table shot, but they were so far out of frame and the way the light was coming through them that if you'd known what they were, you would have been like that's really weird, but they actually added something because of the way we use the selective focus, right? Right? So one of let you guys know for and also for bob in antalya, we did get anna's issues while shooting the baby ones ease on because it is very difficult shooting non model product shots, since the items are flat and additional issues are photographing white garments, the bib and the and the t on the high contrast items with the black in the skull are those some things that were going to be addressing? Absolutely because we're going to be suspending them from a line number one. So now we're not dealing with a flat object anymore, and we're going to use the black in the centre and being framed by the two white objects, so that should help with the balance were also shooting against an object that is going to give some contrast to either of those things because it's, not it's, neither white nor black, so and then we're going to try to get a little fancy with the fan. And if we could make that shot happened, I think that I think anna would be pretty happy with that. Great. All right, so so where we had all my vision is coming to life. What is happening here? This is looking really cool. Lens hood, lens hood for this one. It's here somewhere. Uh oh. It's inside another one. Okay, so so, bob, where are we? Bob? Tell me. Tell me what we were here we got on. Well, I mean, you basically gave us everything we needed to know. Okay, so all right, we basically put it together, having a problem in that they don't fit this. This needs to be wider. Okay? I'm not. I don't necessarily have a problem with them coming out of frame meaning. If we have one completely info in frame and then the other to kind of just drifting in from the sides. Look, I would be totally comfortable with that. What was the decision to choose the twine versus the versus the pink line? I just thought pink would take away from the product itself. Okay. It might be too bright. I mean, I could be wrong, change it out. I like it when I saw it because of the fact that this is a natural fiber and then we have that really kind of same natural feeling color with this and then we're obviously going for a natural look in that we're hanging our clothing outdoors here, right? We're not we're not um we're not putting them in the dryer and while using us twenty eight to seventy lens and we're shooting daylight and we're going to probably augment with that strobe light so are our settings are going to be important here so once were once we're there we're gonna use a little do you need a pocket wizard john winning over there they have one just one back there okay, people in the same so again we use the pocket wizards to pop the strove and then try toe we're gonna be meat oring carefully for the exposure with daylight coming in here so we do have a little bit of daylight in the room we're going to try to do it that way first so so john are you export what we exposing for first don't know yet o okay, just making sure the camera's working I was just testing the tether working today, okay? So I'm gonna go toe ugh I saw that somebody had a question like right off the bat before that was exactly what I was from what bob said I was wondering obviously the backgrounds not big enough so would you just have thie too white products sort of there is a reference point that it is a clothes line and we have other things here, right? Because I mean in this scenario you know we're going for a particular field and it's not about displaying each individual object together I mean, you know by itself so if we can kind of have a little bit of overlap or and we can kind of arrange them in different ways we may find that way get the field that we like right now we're going for the exposure for just the windows here, okay? Probably a little hot there maybe we can go to fiftieth of a second or a thirtieth of a second okay, all right I s o two hundred at four and a half, which should be fine here especially that were kind of shooting out of flat out once we get an image that we're comfortable with, it would be really great if way if we can crop into one because then we would really get the feel for what we're trying to do if that whole front black ones is in a horizontal crop that would be really nice so so far it's showing up way now that I'm just taking that when I haven't changed anything, I'm gonna zoom in a little bit we're seventy so with ok, any questions you have that looks too I can answer while they're getting that set up. Yes, this came from recipe renovator. Can you talk about his relationship with shooting with a stylist versus you yourself? Acting as the stylist that's ah that's a good question. There are times when you step onto a set and you're working with the stylist of your own choice and there are times when you go on to a set and it's someone else's choice. But regardless of the of the situation, the photographer is the director of the photo shoot, so the stylist is there to make your vision happen. So if there's things that are on set that you want or don't want to, you want to change or tweak that's that's, it has to come from the photographer stylist is doing the job for you so that's definitely the relationship that has to be established of brunt and that's sometimes ah, tricky. Now you have to navigate that, but I would say that being collaborative and positive with the other person is always the best way to go. Great. Thank you. Okay, so talk me through this what do you what do you guys were attempting right now? After you've got set up going, we're trying to crop it in camera in camera, okay, cool this may blow out totally because we haven't tried it with the stroke before so we could bring down the power of the stroke yeah so the goal is to try to create with the stroke of the idea that there's a kind of sunshiny day some directionality to the light lebron is screaming at us this is a room that big it's a little tricky to try to get that kind of directionality howard yes the effort studio on ly about nine feet okay yeah they're not all that tall so my camera stand is about seven feet and when it's that full extension where my and I'm on a ladder my head's pretty close to the real nice I'm not used to these these cereals cameras what do you want a amateur cameras what do you shoot nikon yes oh no we have a way tio cannon that there's another challenge okay I've got it on the cross that's good really debate right now we're getting there let's see that's kind of interesting definitely hotter on that one side can you see it john from where you are because there's a little angle on the screen which side it's hotter on your side you're saying that's what it looks like well I mean I don't think it really matters which side of tahoe because as long as you get the idea we wantto bring exactly bob's bringing that black card that might certainly do the trick what you doing over there bringing that down to a quarter power quarter power okay this is a nice white room with a high ceiling so it's going bad the light you can see the light bouncing all over so it's we're going maybe need to what bob is doing right now is exactly what I was thinking that maybe shading offside some of it would give ah little bit more look it's kind of hard to tell unless we put them up side by side from before we shot the strobe I don't know how much of that is the stroke but how much is the ambien we're trying to mix them here yes shutters twenty five seconds twenty fifth of a second so it's because we're using light shutter speed is appropriate to adjust and can you talk a little bit about that? Because I remember when I was learning photography that was kind of tricky spot for me that that the shutter speed controls the ambient light right? The shutter speed is going to control the ambient light so the thing about it is to talk about the inverse to talk about why strobe is controlled by the aperture because the wavelength of the light the fact is how fast it goes basically if you look at the way strobe light works it's sort of like a curve so when it's at the peak tow how tow when it shuts itself off that's a certain amount of time cameras only sink it two hundred most of them only thinking about two hundredth of a second and everything beyond that it only goes by how fast the light turns on and off so think about running into a room turning the light on turn and turning it back off that's the distance of how between when the light turns on one turns off that's dictating so it's like a pinhole camera right it's damn picture is the same the lights that you know and then the light is timed or I don't know that's probably not the right analogy, but the reality is that it's about how fast that the light can get from here to here and it's a lot faster than the way the camera khun click the shutter so that dictates the way it works so here because we're using mixed light the shutter will control the daylight in the room while the aperture will help modify that as well. Great sixtieth of a second on the screen go down two thirds to one hundredth of a second okay on see if it opens it up a little bit like timing down so well I mean, I think that it's definitely become it's more influenced by the stroke, but it is by the daylight in here because of the color temperature does that the feel the same way can we move the sun at all? Uh, well, I mean, I was really, really good. Oven mittens, wait so to control the strobe I could go down to five point six from four point five. Yeah, let's see, get him better and see, I think right now it's about achieving that balance between the two lights so I think that you have ah so does trying to go for there was sunlight kind of behind you could see behind the fence it's coming through and then ambient light filling the front. Sure, I don't know if it works or not something to try you won't open the shades a little bit more to live it's more like I think we go the opposite, if anything okay, yeah. Try to rely on that's what? I try to control the stroll of some. That might be a good idea bringing that one down. Bring it down. Bring it down. Well, let's, try it up like that. Okay, so we just let a little bit more daylight in the room to see if we can get a better color balance and see if we can get that back part of the fence that kind of shine through. So so I think if you if they're if the stroke was firing right behind here, you think that might achieve it a little bit more directly would be more like a sunset they later in the day coming through, we can try that. Yeah, I think we don't need a second bar putting the food on it and making it more directional down. We'll always trying to go for this pinpointed sunlight that kind of bounces off the corner of your problem is with the white walls, I think it's just like a big battle, I think I think we have a lot of photographers in the room that's yeah, and I think we're getting a lot of all, but I think obviously you're I was thinking what bob was thinking in that the fact that what john was, what john wants is this kind of almost like rays like common kind of comic coming across but there's really a very difficult to have a directional kind of approach with that strobe being that this was all like a giant light box. This is like being in the light tent here because everything is painted white, so it's like a just a basically a giant version of what we did on on that little scale before. So the experimentation see, we only we knew going into this that we probably would only need one set up because the lighting in this really achieved that feel that we're looking for outdoors and a kind of a mixed light feeling is going to be a little bit harder to achieve so john and I sat around last night at dinner we were discussing this shot and it was something that you know that's kind of that nice collaborative fun photographer talk how do you think we can do this how do you think we could do that? So do you have any questions while we're experimenting a little bit yeah we do have a question from pam hawkins she wouldn't know how much time you spend researching a company that wants you to shoot something for them for instance with this company you should know the product line but is the baby clothes maker natural on lee company? The hot pink line could be non organic and they might not have liked that they would have preferred the twine or thomas you know it's an interesting question because I contemplated that myself and I think that until you're actually posed with something that you morally haven't issue with like at this to this point I have not come across a client that I have research that I was questioned there morals are they went ran contrary to my personal feelings I haven't really had that problem I think that it's a hard to limit yourself in that regard has a professional if you're working and you making a living I think unless something is so egregious and so counter to the way you live your life because if I'm a food photographer who's a vegetarian, does that mean I won't shoot me so on dh that's a you know a pretty basic example that could happen very easily so I think that you have to be mindful that you know what your personal preferences are and how you live your life and how you run your business and if there's not something that's completely counter and egregious in your eyes and I wouldn't shoot I mean I wouldn't shoot for big, you know, for big what do you call it? I don't want to say the name of a company, so I'm tryingto way get big whatever, right? Because I have a problem with it and I, you know, god taught to dance around those things, isn't it? I'm like I'm dancing right great dancing around trying not to, not to be really controversial, but the reality is there are cos I wouldn't work for you but that some of that really egregious and then and how much research teo kind of on them not exactly the flip side, but how how much research would you do into that company and building the relationship with them to make sure you're not offending their brand or I wouldn't worry about that because if they sought me out and they did their legwork than they know what, they kind of know what I'm about so great I try not to keep personal feelings, politics and those kinds of things in my business unless again it's something that is just completely off the off the reservation okay, great thanks did we make any headway in the three minutes it took me that that question try it with some color behind everyone's ignoring me again so take another shot and let's see what? Try it again okay wave put people in the zone and now they forgot that they are watching and people are watching them well that's getting that's getting the bright sunny look behind I think that's pretty close well you're the art director yu tell us well I would like it to be a little brighter in the front I think maybe if we brought up a little bit more of the daylight so go to your shutter speed. Yeah, okay why don't you try showing us try shutter speed first or or not? Okay, it really helps to do one thing at a time, right? Only change one element one variable oh, you want in your position position let's see what happens? Maybe we had a happy accident it's terrible. Okay, let's, try it let's do it one more time ready on dh okay, I think the light and I like to think the light balances much better I think that that brightness in the background is coming through. Can we try to get a cropped image of this from above the clothes pins based on the center centerpiece of clothing and below, eh? So that we can crop right into it and see what a completed image would look like in this connect in this situation. It's really interesting talking to no one. I'm curious how much traveling do you do for your product? Photography will clients sometime insists that you come to their facility and do the shooting there sometimes. But the reality is that because I have my own studio, the majority of the work I do is back home in new york. So it's, you know, sometimes people will send things to the studio and just like what? The packaging stuff that you had him and you got your big package that would be a very familiar kind of thing. A package arrives through a messenger. We do what we have to do. We pack it back up and send it home back to its home in the back. Very nice. So do we get we got crop still was still it's a little too square for me? I think it's probably because on the bottom we have you see how this kind of we have this, which is what jon was adding to get that effect but also now I would crop kind of right right in here and then through the t shirt through the t shirt yeah, I wouldn't worry so much about that because I don't want to see that but way achieved a highlight in here right on the edge I think that's what that is unless it's a white thread e I don't know you know I think it's highly that's a highlight so okay, well we'll get a crop eventually but I think that what would you leave that highlight there which you move would you move the shut over a bit? Oh no I was I think I would leave the highlight we meant to do that yeah, well I mean it's maybe that maybe so much we set it up to see what we would get and we like the result I mean, I think sometimes that happens that way so we'll all stare at the screen until the actual crop happens way so yeah that's definitely more in line with what I was thinking how we wanted to tell me how do you feel about the lighting that you achieved? Is it what is it closer to what you wanted or is it did you want to still work on a little bit and that doesn't really work on television if you don't like it if we could change it all out? I mean I was just thinking mohr to really make it look like the sun was in the back. Okay? And I have a lot more directionality in right this light coming in here. Ok, ok. To me, it's still a little bit too flat to flat. Okay, so here's, the thing from art directing standpoint, I think we have something that's workable. I totally I agree with you that it would be great to continue to work this and get the lighting perfected to the way that you would feel comfortable doing it. And I would definitely encourage you to do the same dude, that is continue to do that lighting until you get it exactly the way you want it. So I I I think you should do that, but I want to hear from natalya as well. Like what? What are you feeling about this and about the process you're going through? How you you know what? You learning as you go here or yeah, um, just because of the white t shirts, I I think that was a little seemed a little problematic because they were blown out. Okay, so just managing to get them not so blown out. So media ring for the highlight in this situation. Probably your best bet, because that's going to be what like we talked about earlier is that if your whites are blown out then that information on a digital file is lost. The blacks of something you can bring back very easily in post production scenario. So I would try to meet her for the whites, make sure we're tiny bit underexposed and then be able to kind of work that image and have maximum flexibility with that. So so I say, let's, try to get that that shot that you want to do and see how we could make that work do you want me to do you want me to hold the cart on one? Try doing another exposure for the breaks. This is teetering on the brakes there just to see how much we're at five, six now, goto, maybe you won twenty fifth of a second. Okay, so questions as we go. Yeah, you know, we had one handful questions asking about that. You're tethering workflow. What have a monitor do you like to use? Do you rely on the monitors? You calibrate them? Do you rely on what you're seeing on your camera when I shoot when I shoot ted that I shoot directly to my macbook pro and I might katmai? Screen is calibrated to the way I like it so it matches the way I like to look at it on the back of the camera great, so I choose tethered into light room and there's, we're going to actually start to experiment with capture one when we go back ok that's another option because there are certain, like I said earlier about tethering, this seems like every tether program has one piece missing and they're all different, so the one that I need most is the one where it automatically orients itself after you shoot and light room didn't do that for me, you have to manually switch it. Well, I don't know why it doesn't mind doesn't when I'm shooting ico it orient sword automatically, you know, maybe I got the wrong setting on because it's, you know what they want most, the center of it all really automatically worrying that I need that that's what I thought so got into the question. Yeah, definitely, especially for calibration because you're really you'll shoot, but you'll you'll check your monitor before the back of the camera even well, sure, because, you know, I'm calm figure I'm confident that what I have on the monitor is very similar to what I have in the back of the camera, but if you meet her properly, you no way there was life before digital yeah, you know, let's talk a little bit about you know don't talk about it come on, I want to talk a little bit about that because you shot film. Yeah, right you're beginning of my career did there was a change over yeah, and now we can just take a test shot. We're using polaroids back in the day tell us a little bit about how that really has changed your workflow well, let's let's check in o b l n yeah, please yeah, something exciting is happening. The shadow is actually kind of that adds to the idea of directionality sure, yeah, I like it. I think that that's kind of nice I think also, you know, the idea of the mixed light and the temperature is something that could be correctable it's it's correctable and because you would want that light to be a little bit whiter, but I don't think we're going to get that with that strobe light, so unless you want to break th em eyes out again, we're getsem gels on it. But I like what we're getting here. I mean, I think are you satisfied that you have a light directionality? Okay, good. And then just talk me through what you did differently from the last shot I just move the light maur this way so that it was angled towards the back of the clothes okay, so that's how we picks up the fence wasn't walking in the sense that you mean okay the one thing we lost though in that is that now we don't have the light that comes through the fence at all but if that that's the idea that the light is hitting the front of the fence that if there wasn't anyone back there holding up okay well all held up the green card if you want to try it can you hold it up this way so that we don't see the edges of the green? Ok ok that's fine. I like my life I really dig your obsessiveness, bob I'm sorry change a bit too. All right, well, I'm going to get out of here then you pull it back and get it all wrong. I get some of that like take a back seat here you're gonna get my fingers in this one, but okay, let's see that's a slight improvement. Well, we see it at the bottom. We couldn't catch light at the top. Okay, try one more this in here. Let's try it. Without that chord, I just want it blows out the background, but okay, but I'm walking the background now don't fight boys, okay, so we're well well and once you crop it in can we crop that one? I'm interested in that one, I think that's. I think that's got a lot of cool elements, you guys, an agreement that that is achieving a lot of the same. I like the white that's coming through the slats. I do, too. I like that a lot. I do like the shadow. Still, I don't, I don't know, absolutely. I kind of feel like I'm in the backyard, so I mean, do you feel that way? Do you feel like you've gotten what you like here? Allright, turn on the fan, I want to see them very blown in every respect here way didn't use that won on this last one. So bob, take the camera that might blow them right off the line, right? That's gonna have to be gentle, gentle breeze, alotta one. If there's, if there's various speeds, I think it'll probably wait. You're not an art director, a window dresser, right way didn't use that one. Is that messing with our sound a lot, or you think, waken hero, are you ready, let's? See if we can actually get that motion and see if it looks that way, kind of adding a little something to it, it's flattening out that third, that third shirt. Ok, after four. All right, I don't know if you don't think john made it. I don't think john made it to the top of the frame. All right, that's, cool, let's, try one where we put the, uh, the fan to make some kind of card, maybe if we could get them to come start coming sideways. This's, otis, I think you got one. I think you caught it way might have got one.

Class Description

You don’t need a studio to take professional-grade product and still life photographs! All you need is a simple tabletop lighting setup. In this course, award-winning food photographer Andrew Scrivani will show you how to create and tailor your own table top lighting setup — on any budget. Whether you’re a beginning photographer looking to master lighting or a professional photographer eager to expand your services, this course will give you a candid, comprehensive playbook for tabletop lighting.

Tabletop photography transforms a single surface into a small-scale studio. Andrew, a regular contributor to The New York Times, will show you how to create and then optimize your lighting setup for your needs — using everything from the latest gear to household items. Andrew will cover metering and bounce cards, working with strobes and soft boxes, LED lighting, and tips for shooting glassware and other tricky products.

By the end of this course, you will know how to set up and adjust your very own tabletop studio — and how to use that small-scale studio to expand your services, improve your photography, and market your business.


a Creativelive Student

I was pleased to see real life situations and set ups, their work arounds and the little fiddly things all commercial/product photographers go through to produce a viable shot. Unlike some of the other reviews, the "oops, it didn't work, let's try this instead" was totally real world and believable. So many times on other teaching venues, the shot is already set up and perfected before the instruction begins. It was extremely helpful to watch the processes that were involved in producing the correct captures. I was impressed with the humor and teaching style as well, especially for the time constraints in a classroom setting. The student set-ups and critiques were valuable and spot on without being negative in any way. All-in-all this was one of the best classes I've viewed at Creative Live. I just wish I could have had three more days and to have been there in person for the one-on-one instruction.

Aly Cupcakezz

I really liked how things were experimented. Instead of just giving do x, y, z. It shows you how to correct issues as they come up, and how to enhance your photography This gives you a guided idea of all the things you can play with to perfect your product photography image. You really learn how to fix the image problems as they appear in front of you. A very realistic way to create your own personal lighting setup for your product photos for your own studio space. Excellent fundamentals class for new photographers or small businesses attempting to do their own product photography. Thank you!

Sunil Sinha

very nice table top