Lifestyle Product Photography
Lifestyle Product Photography is a great way to make money using your photography skills. Many businesses need it and if you can do it well, there is money to be made! Lifestyle product photography is different than just regular product shots because it shows the product in use. This is the way a lot of companies want to showcase their product since it shows their product in action. This is what we’ll be discussing today. Showing the product in an environment also gives context to what the product does and how to use it. So it’s a win-win for everyone!
Get a Product
Today we’re going to be looking at the BlackRapid Retro strap. They just released the second version of their famous strap which you can pick up here. If you are an owner of an original Retro strap, you can trade it in for an upgrade here!
Now that we’ve got our product, we can start shooting with our talent.
#1: Show Your Talent How to Use the Product
This first one is a shocker, but so important! If your talent isn’t using the product correctly, those photos won’t be approved by your client. Make sure you have a working understanding of the product and show the talent how to properly use the product. That way they don’t look foolish, and you get some good product shots to show off.
Have your talent practice a little bit so they don’t look as awkward when holding or using the product. All of these little steps will help make your photos better.
#2: Wide, Tight and Interesting
Next, get tight shots of the product itself. These would show the special features of the product like a zipper, compartment, or the material it’s made out of.
Finally, get interesting angles with the talent using the product. This includes high and low angles, different perspectives and using the product in action.
#3: Get Comfortable with Your Talent
It’s important to have a good relationship with your talent on set. This will help them feel more comfortable and relaxed which will give you better results. When you build this relationship, your talent will also be more comfortable with you telling them what to do and hopefully, they’re more cooperative.
I like working with couples because there’s already chemistry between the two and you don’t have to simulate that. They are also usually more comfortable in each other’s personal space and won’t put up a fight if you ask them to get cozy.
#4: Choose the Right Gear
I like to stick with a 70-200 mm f/2.8 lens for most of the product lifestyle shoots I do. Why? Because it gives me great separation from the background and I can still get a sharp image at f/4 while still maintaining a shallow depth of field.
I also shoot in high-speed burst mode, which allows me to take about eight pictures a second. This helps me to capture that ‘moment’ in time when something happens. It’s better to have 50 of the same shot, but have a copy somewhere, rather than missing the moment.
Using a 24-70mm also helps in the situations where you’ll need extra space or need to get wide shots.
If we’re out running and gunning, I’ll bring with me my Vanguard Alta Rise Backpack, and put my extra batteries, lenses, etc in. If I’m in LA, I’ll bring a wagon with me.
#5: Dress the Part
Wear clothes that are appropriate for the occasion. Most of the time you won’t be in a fancy restaurant trying to shoot product. A lot of times I need to get on the ground in order to get the shot I want. So wear clothes that you don’t mind getting dirty.
#6: Shoot with Text in Mind
Since you’re going to be using these photos for products, you also want to keep in mind that some copy might need to be added. To compensate for this, shoot a few shots with the open sky so the text has somewhere to go. You don’t want it too wide where we lose the talent in the image, but wide enough to fill at least half of the image with your talent/product.
- You can’t shoot enough!
- Get comfortable with your talent
- Get epic shots
- Get tight shots
- Get shots to be used with type