I know what you’re thinking. Isn’t NATURAL light the best light for product photos? Do I really have to buy professional lighting?
Natural lighting is beautiful and perfect for lifestyle photography and styled photos. You can create a consistent look with natural lighting for your website or social media.
But if you sell on e-commerce websites like Amazon, or your own website, you will also need white background photos. White background product photos give your product pages a uniform and non distracting look. They allow the customer to know exactly what they’ll be getting when they buy your product.
If you sell on Amazon then you HAVE to have white background product photos. I won’t get into too much details in this post but Amazon has very specific requirements for sellers photos.
None of this means you can’t also use beautiful styled or lifestyle images in your listings. The white background photos should be your main image along with a few different angles of the product.
So why use artificial light for these images?
For one thing – you likely have a decent amount of products with intentions of adding more in the future right? When you look at a product page on a website you want all images to have the same look and feel. That means consistent lighting, sizing and placement. It wouldn’t look professional if your new products don’t match the old products right?
Natural light changes throughout the day. It actually can change very quickly once you have that perfect lighting. If you have 50 product photos the first image will end up looking quite different from the last. You can spend hours in Light Room editing them to look consistent but wouldn’t you rather save time and have your photos already consistent in camera?
Another great reason is you can take your photos any time of the day or night. You don’t need to find a location with the perfect windows that let the light in at just the right time of the day. You can take your photos anywhere with lighting and a diffuser.
When you set up your studio for product photos you can be sure you are using exactly the same lighting and set up for consistent images. You’ll also want to take note of the product placement, tripod set up, camera settings and the light box or diffuser you’re using. This will give you control of the final images and allow you to duplicate the results for future products.
Your lighting doesn’t have to be expensive. There are many simple lighting kits available on Amazon that will work well for your e-commerce photos. You’ll also need something to help you diffuse the light. Your best option will probably be a simple light box which is just a white fabric box for placing your product into.
Simple product photos don’t have to be complicated but they do need to to showcase your product. You still want to make the best impression on your audience when they visit your product pages. Always be sure that your images present your product in a clear way that makes it easy for the customer to understand.