Halloween Photoshoot – How many lights are needed for product photography?


So, just finished a fairly complicated two shoot. One was an invisible man shoot. One was a Halloween pumpkin shoot. The Halloween pumpkin one actually required eight lights. I know a lot of you always like gripe a little bit about
the amount of lights but sometimes it’s absolutely necessary. I mean let’s just give you… This was the light shining through
the pumpkin to create the orange glow. We cut a hole in the back. We gelled it, orange gel and diffusion inside. These two lights on this scrim roll were for the pumpkin
itself and also for the products in the pumpkin. This was an edge light on the back of the pumpkin. This blue gel light was for a blue glow on the edge of
the pumpkin and another one from this little fresnel. And then this top light was to create a
pool of light and a little bit of a shadow. And then the good old broncolor flooter on the
background giving me my background glow. So they’re all absolutely necessary and they’re all absolutely
necessary because building the lighting up through the process I’m looking at the light, looking at the contours
and the pumpkin, looking at how I’m going to make it more three dimensional, looking
how I’m going to create the right atmosphere, so it’s that additional one light a time, building up, building
up, and it ended up at eight lights. Could have ended up at four, could have
ended up at six, could have ended up at 12. It’s just going to go wherever it needs
to go until it feels right, basically. The Invisible Man one was a lot, lot simpler. Background light from the flooter.
Top light 35×60 softbox on the bowler hat and a Para 133 from the front
on the mannequin and suit. So that one was a lot simpler lighting setup. Stiffany’s got a boyfriend for today. This is our mannequin and we’ve had to borrow a male
one so she’s got a bit of a cheeky smile on her face.

12 Replies to “Halloween Photoshoot – How many lights are needed for product photography?”

  1. Piotr Góra. Domestic grocery store in Olszówka. Pumpkins much bigger;) BTW: Bielsko-Biała is equal to Guernsey regarding the space. Something You walk within.

  2. I don't think the number of lights you use is crazy or insane. I did a simple shoot with 4 bottles of soda and I count 21 exposures that had to be composited. If I could afford more lights, I would have had a much easier time in post and arrived with a better overall result. Here is the image if you get a chance to take a quick glance: https://flic.kr/p/2b9BFjz

  3. I wish you didn't always have to justify your gear to the internet. You're a professional using the highest quality tools because they allow you to get the results you want with more ease. And even though my gear is much more humble, I have never had an issue adapting your teachings and techniques for my own photography. It might take a little more work and creativity to get decent results, but your lessons have improved my photography more than just about any other online instructor. In the end, the fundamentals are all the same no matter how expensive your lights and camera are. Plus, I think it's cool to see the fancy equipment. It's a bit like watching Top Gear. I'll never own a Ferrari, but I still like seeing one in action.

  4. One light could have been used to take the photo, which would have been a flat image. But adding more light has now given the image more dimension. That is the difference between taking a photo and creating one. Great result.

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