Looking around and focusing on the idea that works, that is the starting point for a successful shoot. We are Studio Concept and we help cosmetic brands through still life photography to arrive.
Location exploration and planning
Looking around is the first useful step and serves to create the basic idea that will underpin the entire advertising campaign. Often the solutions are right in front of your eyes and all you need to do is find them. Observation can capture an old coloured rag or perhaps some basil leaves and who knows what other object that might come in handy. He who seeks creates.
Observing the environments also helps to assess the scene, the still life in advertising campaigns cannot follow the simple canons of the commercial one for the classic e-shop. Each shot must tell a story but, at the same time, has the potential to enhance the role of the products in the chosen setting. Inspiration can only come from places, a balance between product and setting is needed.
Exploiting natural light
It is perhaps one of the most well-known tricks, but exploiting natural light is one of the most effective moves for still life photographers. A large window with a good exposure is pure manna from heaven when arranging a set for a cosmetic line. The colours gain from this for a flawless rendering.
How to do it? The answer is still in the observation: just decide on the location for the shoot, organise the shooting location and check how the light changes several times during the day. If you really lack a window, a very close effect can come from light filtering through a diffuser. It takes the right experience but the result is pleasing.
Essential equipment for still life photography
Still life can also rely on very spartan equipment. Indeed, very often still life photographers are confronted with the need to create using the most disparate objects. However, it is necessary to have the technical equipment to ensure professional-level shots.
- Camera. Equal image resolution is the priority, the camera does not have to be fast. A full frame would be the best.
- Lens. A sharp image is the goal, fixed focal length lenses reduce distortions and provide excellent apertures.
- Tripod. If it is heavy and sturdy, the camera does not tend to shake. The fixed camera is a valuable aid in still life.
- Light source. The window is unsurpassed but it is also possible to play with light using other light sources.
- Reflector with diffuser. Models with a removable cover are preferred; the diffuser allows light control.
Contact us for more information on our services
Management of props
Still life is that photographic genre that constantly remains suspended between the essential and the border of confusion. The still life set, especially in the presentation of an advertising campaign, could get dirty with a composition that veers towards “too much”. Balance and a few little rules are the best allies of a work that can get there.
The golden section and spiral but also the rule of probability and the rule of thirds are just some of the patterns to follow in still life shots. The important thing is not to let the object lose its centrality, you need to enhance its shapes and recall its colours but without encroaching on its centrality in the scene. A crowded still life can be eye-catching but attention must be paid to the context.
Attention to detail
The use of cotton gloves is one of the rules when handling products during scene preparation. True, dust is one of the worst allies but the number one enemy are fingerprints and small imperfections. Advertising campaigns are prepared using samples, they need to look perfect.
Captivating textures let the product interact with natural elements: sometimes simple drops of water are used, other times full-immersion shots are taken, ice is another valuable prop. Here the work can become even more painstaking: the packaging must be as perfect as the props.
Edit your photos with post-production
Choosing a good post-processing software allows artfully done retouching for real. It is good to remember that the best shots are the ones that are already good to begin with, the retouching should allow for the elimination of shooting aids and perhaps the cleaning of the slightest speck of dust. Playing too much on exposure and contrast could affect the correct colour balance.
The purpose of a still life advertising campaign is precisely to make the real image of the cosmetic appealing, the public must observe a product that adheres to the reality they will find in the point of sale. This is where the ethics and professionalism of the photographer come into play as still life is about creating art but without departing from reality.
Creating an effective still life for an advertising campaign is a meticulous and thoughtful art. It requires careful planning, keen observation and artistic sensitivity to capture the authentic essence of cosmetic products, ensuring that they shine in their best possible light. With Studio Concept, you can navigate through this complex process with the confidence and guidance of experienced professionals, ensuring that every detail, from location to post-production, is taken care of to perfection. Let us transform your vision into powerful, persuasive images that will define and elevate your online advertising campaign.