For this particular product photography class Karl replicates a Clinique-style advertising shot and demonstrates the process of working to a brief. Guided by the brand’s fresh, clean style, Karl explains how to light and style a high-end advertising image. You’ll be able to watch, step-by-step, as Karl shares his shooting process and reveals some top tips for effective product photography.
In this first part of the shoot Karl outlines the challenges he expects to face throughout the shoot and starts work on his lighting setup, focusing initially on achieving the clean white background typical of Clinique advertising images and perfecting the gradient lighting on the silver caps of the bottles.
- Creating a Clinique style advertising image
- Getting a white background and base surface
- Graduated lighting on the silver caps with black edges
- Backlighting through the bottles with high contrast on the edges
- Using mood boards and reference pictures
- Carefully controlled background lighting
- Using scrims to create gradient lighting
- Reflectors and flags to add highlights and contrast
The apparent simplicity of Clinique’s clean, fresh advertising images are greatly misleading and I knew there would be a number of challenges to overcome throughout this shoot.
Before I started the shoot I collected a number of Clinique advertising images that I could refer to as these would guide me in my lighting and composition.
The first phase of the shoot involved creating the clean white background typically seen in Clinique shots. For this I used two lights to achieve a bright, even light that would reflect into my base surface and through the bottles.
From there the next stage was to introduce some side lighting. A key part to consider here was the silver caps on the bottles. For this I needed to create a gradient light but with high contrast on the edges, which I did by introducing black flags.
In the following stages of the shoot I start looking at increasing the contrast in the bottles, reflecting black into the logos, capturing the splash shot and photographing the smallest bottle separately.
The final image:
To learn more about product photography, read my top tips for product photography here. You’ll also find a selection of product photography classes on our website, though I’ve put together a selection of classes below which I think you may find useful.
If you have any questions about this shoot please post in the comments section below.