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We’ve been awarded Craftsman Status!

After being awarded our ‘Qualified Status’ of the Guild of Photographers at the end of 2017, during 2018 we have been working towards gaining ‘Craftsman Status’.

As qualified UK Product photographers, we take great pride in our continual professional development.  By investing time in taking on additional challenges we keep our outlook fresh as well as proving to clients that we’re serious about our product photography services.  This is because we have a strong belief that this commitment to professional development is one of the things that distinguishes a professional product photographer from an amateur.

The Guild of Photographers has of 3 levels of qualification: Qualified, Craftsman, Master Craftsman

The definition of Craftsman Status is as follows:

Our ‘Craftsman’ status is, as one would imagine, aligned to the exacting standards of a true ‘Craftsman’. Therefore to attain this level we add an increasing level of professional critique to evaluate our members work. In other words we get increasingly ‘fussy’ and look in minutiae at all the elements of photographic understanding. Those that achieve this accolade have demonstrated the finest technical skills and an exceptional creative and artistic ‘eye’.

“In order to pass at this level we need evidence of creativity and experience in directing, capturing and creating exciting images. In other words, a clear demonstration of your all- round capabilities and knowledge of the craft, fused with your personal flair and a clear individual style, is required to pass. Variety is therefore still a key element contributing to success…but it is also important the images also work together as a coherent set”.

The Guild of Photographers

Bearing these definitions and guidelines in mind we set about creating a panel of work that showcases the creativity and attention to detail that we always strive for in all of our product photography.

The Craftsman Panel comprises the following:

  • 20 off mounted 10” x 8” prints on 16” x 12” mounts
  • Presentation Book
  • Branded USB card for client delivery of products.
  • Written brief

In addition to having individual high quality images, it’s equally important that the panel works as cohesive body of work.  The panel should show a consistent style and be constructed so that the colours and composition of individual images work together when the images are viewed as a whole.

During judging the panel of images is mounted and scrutinised in a dedicated viewing area at the Guild HQ.  This means that there is a huge emphasis on having the highest quality of prints that are immaculately mounted and presented.  After some experimentation and test prints, we decided to use One Vision Imaging to print the images using Fuji metallic paper.  This paper is ideal for giving the vibrant images great colour saturation and depth.  The beautiful prints were mounted using double aperture bright white window mount with black under-mount and a card back board.

In addition to the mounted prints, a book of the images was submitted.  This was printed by Saal Digital and was excellent quality as ever.  We opted to go for the extra thick pages with gloss prints to maintain the high quality feel and were not disappointed.  Here’s a look through the pages:

The final part of the panel was a physical product that would be provided to clients.  Even though nearly all of our client deliveries are electronic these days we provided a credit-card sized branded USB drive.

The whole panel is assessed by a panel of five experienced and qualified judges.  The use of numerous judges removes the influence of personal preference on the final decision.  The criteria against which the panel is being judged are:

  • Impact
  • Presentation
  • Technical excellence
  • Lighting
  • Technique
  • Creativity
  • Subject matter
  • Colour balance
  • Composition
  • Centre of interest
  • A consistent personal style

All in all, there’s a huge amount of work involved in gaining recognition as a Craftsman.  However, we strongly believe that this investment is more than worth all of the time effort and money.  This is not for bragging rights, but is to show our valued clients that we take our craft very seriously and are always willing to put in extra effort to ensure that they always get the best value images.

Sharing is Caring!

I hope that you’ve found this post interesting and helpful in understanding that retouching in product and advertising photographs does not have to distort reality. It can be used to make small and relatively subtle changes that highlight and refine a product.

I’d love to hear your comments or views on any of the topics covered above so feel free to enter them down below!

The post Craftsman Status – The Guild of Photographers appeared first on Product photography Leicester, UK.

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It’s official – we are award winning photographers, again!

The Guild of Photographers is a UK based worldwide organisation that runs an annual international photography competition.  The Guild’s members make up a thriving community of like-minded people with either business of personal interests in all genres of photography.

Image of the Month:

The Guild’s annual Image of the Month competition is open to all members who can enter any number of images into the 4 categories each month.  The competition runs for 10 months a year and entries are made over a period of 10 consecutive months.  The Annual awards split the standard 4 categories of people, babies, wedding & open into 15 more specific categories.  Awards are made to photographers with the highest cumulative marks throughout the year in each category.  This ensures that, as well as a high standard of images being required, there must also be consistence throughout the year.

All images are judged monthly by a panel of renowned and respected, industry leading professional photographers against strict criteria including technical skill, lighting and composition.  With a monthly entry totalling around 1,400 images  there are over 14,000 images entered every year.  There are many reasons that people enter this competition, with around 13,000 images being entered annually.

The 2017 IOM results:

It takes a fair amount of dedication to make time for creating IOM entries on a regular basis and alongside client work.  However, for those who love the challenge of creating new and innovative images, it’s also great fun.

IOM scoring:
  • A Platinum Bar: Images of exceptional or outstanding quality (only awarded to the ultimate of images)
  • A Gold Bar: Images of particular distinction (very rare)
  • A Silver Bar:Images that are very well crafted (difficult to achieve)
  • A Bronze Bar:Images of a strong standard at a national competition level
  • ClassifiedImages of a standard worthy of acknowledgement but not deemed award winning at national competition level.
  • Not scored.. Images that do not reach our ‘Classified’ level score will not be given a grade.
Our IOM 2017 results:
January:

Silver Bar

Silver Bar

Silver Bar

February:

Silver Bar

Silver Bar

Bronze Bar

March:

Gold Bar

Silver Bar

Silver Bar

April:

Silver Bar

Silver Bar

Silver Bar

May:

Silver Bar

Silver Bar

June:

Gold Bar

Gold Bar

Bronze Bar

July:

Silver Bar

Silver Bar

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Quality packshots help sell your products

Online shopping, e-commerce and product sales via the internet are big business. The growth in this area of sales is far larger than any other sector and in Europe shows a 16% increase each year for the last two years (www.retailresearch.org) This number has been increasing every year and is predicted to keep increasing for the foreseeable future.  This sounds like a good thing, right? Well, it depends on who you are and what you’re trying to do.

For small business and entrepreneurs, having an online store is a cheap alternative to owning or renting high street premises.  It can also be very, very cost effective, as long as your customers can find you and your products. Building search engine ranking and being found by your ideal customers will not happen overnight and requires a strong SEO strategy and a whole lot of patience. However, SEO strategy is a whole different topic and is not covered by this post.  Once you have managed to get your potential customers to your website or online store, you need to showcase your products and then encourage them to buy.

The human brain reacts to images much faster than it does to words. So the fastest way to convince customers that they should buy from you, is quickly and clearly shown them that what you are selling is actually what they want.  In other words, you need quality packshots of your products!

Let’s take a look at the 5 reasons why you need to be using quality packshots to help sell your products:

  1. Customers know exactly what they are buying.
  2. Gives you credibility & inspires confidence.
  3. It shows that you pride & care your products.
  4. Reduces customer complaints & returns.
  5. Increased profit and ROI (Return on Investment).

Now, let’s have a quick look at the basic psychology of a potential customer visiting your online store and see what impact the quality of the images has upon them and how it effects the decisions that they make:

1.   Customers know exactly what they are buying

The first thing potential customers think to themselves when browsing an online store is “Do they sell what I’m looking for?”.  In the first few seconds of a potential customer finding your online store, you have to demonstrate very clearly that you actually sell the products that they are looking for.  IF not, they will soon move on and look elsewhere.

If you have clean, clear, uncluttered images showing exactly what you sell then the customer will be able to decide immediately if they should continue browsing.  You will have a made a positive impression on them which is something that money or SEO can’t buy!

Look at the images below to see the obvious differences between a poor quality amateur packshot and a high quality professional packshot.  If you saw these images on two online stores, which store would you be more inclined to shop with?

Another aspect is that clients can’t pick up and feel the products that you offer like in a high street store.  They need to be confident that what they are buying is exactly what they want and the only way to do that online is using images.

2.   Gives you credibility & Inspires confidence in you

Internet shoppers are generally a wary bunch.  We’ve all have heard the horror stories associated with phishing scams, identity theft and so many other online scams that we’re constantly on our guard for things that ring alarm bells. Therefore, when shopping online, customer want to see exactlywhat it is that they are buying from you.

If you have taken the easy route and copied a generic product image from Google, customers are immediately suspicious as to why you are not showing actual images of your own products.  This use of generic packshots of a similar type of product is often viewed by online store visitors that you have something to hide and may be trying to mislead them. This most definitely does not build a customer’s confidence in you or your online store.

However, if you take the exact same product and then commission your own set of professionally created packshots, then customers will immediately recognise that you are indeed actually selling those products.

The sort of decisions that we’re talking about here are not deliberate ones, but they are subtle and sub-conscious.  However, they still drastically change the way in which we behave.

3.   It shows that you take pride & care your products

When customers are shopping with you online, they can’t see you in person.  If you are a neat, tidy and careful person, they’ll never know.  If you spend all day in bed eating junk food working from a laptop, they will never know! The only information they have to base their judgement on is what they see in front of them, and that is your website, online store or e-commerce store.

To keep visitors engaged and active, your online store or website needs to be well designed, easy to navigate, fast and secure.  Another subconscious assumption that customers make is that if a website is clean & efficient then the owner must also treat all other aspects of their business the same way.

These days, there are many devices such as smartphones, laptops and tablets that are capable ‘taking a picture’.  However, it’s not the camera that creates a crisp and clean packshot image.  It’s a combination of in-depth knowledge of lighting, composition and post-processing, experience and creativity.  How this knowledge is applied to make your products look their very best is much of what you are actually paying for when commissioning a professional photographer to created packshots for you.

So, if you have badly lit images on a messy, cluttered & distracting background this will reflect badly upon your business as a whole.

4.    Reduces customer complaints & returns

As described in the points above, online shoppers want to know what they are buying before giving their hard earned cash to you.  Therefore, for every product you sell, you provide a selection of high quality packshot images that show all aspects of the product then they are more likely to make an informed decision as to whether to purchase or not.  These well informed customers are much less likely to be dissatisfied with their purchase and want to return it because it isn’t what they expected.

On the other hand, if you only provide a single, low quality, badly lit image of a product the same customers are much more likely to be unhappy with their purchase and return it for a refund.  Not only does this cost you money, but it will also cost you even  more by giving you a bad reputation.

5.    Increased Profit & ROI

Numerous studies have shown that there is a very strong connection between the quality of a product and its’ profitability. In fact, high quality products produce a higher return on investment (ROI) for any given market share.

Defining the value of a specific product is very difficult and will vary from person to person.  However, to enable you to create a high quality product an amount of investment is required.  As long as you can afford this initial investment then you will be more likely to be rewarded with higher profits from satisfied returning customers. Considering the time and effort that is required to develop and prepare a product for the market, it seems crazy that you would ever consider skimping on the single product that has the power to show your target market customers – quality packshots of your amazing products!

As a general business principle, minimizing costs without sacrificing quality can bring a business of any stature to the next level.  This doesn’t means that you should do things cheaply, but you should spend money wisely to maximise the return on your investment.

Conclusions:

The online shopping marketplace is a highly visual one these days.  It’s one where customers need to feel that they can relate to, and trust, the stores that they buy from.

Money is always tight for fledgling businesses and it must be invested wisely to maximise returns.  However, money spent of quality packshots will set your business apart as one who takes great pride and cares in your products, services and customers.

The bigger picture:

So, having read all of this information, are you thinking that I’ve written this because I’m biased and I’m a photographer?  Well, you could think that … and yes, it does benefit my business to create quality packshots of your products, but nowhere near as much as it would transform your business! I am sharing this information because, as a photographer, I see this situation from a unique perspective.  I know how much poor quality packshots can hurt a business, but I also know how high quality photography can make products stand out from the crowd.

If you are serious about your business, then invest in your future. Build yourself a brand and a reputation that will maintain your business through the ups and downs of the economic roller-coaster.

We hope that this article has helped you understand the huge benefits of investing in high quality packshot photography for your business.  If you have any questions regarding any of this or if you have any comments  then we’d love to hear from you below!

The post 5 reasons why you need quality packshots of your products appeared first on Product photography Leicester, UK.

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Welcome to the third and final part in this series of watch photography post-production & retouching posts. In Part 1 and Part 2 of this series we’ve shown our post production workflow from RAW images straight out of the camera through to the final image. If you’ve not yet seen it, then why not have a read through & watch the video it before moving on this final part?

This post shows the post-production and editing of the rear view of a luxury watch from Quinton Shaw.

All of the images covered in these blog posts were created to be incorporated into the product page on the manufacturers website.  Rears views are not always that exciting, but these watches have beautiful rear plates and we wanted to show them off at their very best.

Background

The client brief was to create clean and consistent images to be used on the product page on the manufacturers website for luxury watches.  The concept was to combine three images allowing clients to seamlessly scroll between three images to give a much more accurate view of the product. This approach is very similar to producing 360 spins of the product and providing this level of customer interaction has proven to increase sales conversions when shopping online.

RETOUCHING RAW image processing

The second image underwent the same RAW processing in Adobe Lightroom as shown in the first video. We’ve included it here again for completeness. In this stage, minor exposure and contrast adjustments are made to ensure that we have optimal images to continue retouching in Photoshop.  The adjusted RAW files are exported as 16bit .tif files ready to be retouched in Photoshop.  There is very little other work performed and the .tif files are used to carry out all of the retouching and create the final image.

Retouching in Photoshop

The basic workflow for retouching this image is to cut it out from the background before moving on to image retouching.  If you’re not already friends with the Pen tool, you most certainly will be after a job like this!  This extremely powerful tool is perfect for producing accurate and consistent as well as editable cut-outs. If you’re looking for an easy to follow tutorial on using then Pen tool, then I would highly recommend this onefrom Aaron Nace at Phlearn – it’s packed full of information and Aaron’s super smooth tutorials are always jam-packed full of information!

As you will see from the video, this rear image of the watch has additional areas that need to be outlined using the Pen tool around the inside edges of the strap.  This is about as difficult as a standard watch strap can be due to the small individual links.  However, the effort is worth it as the subject can easily be placed on to any digital background once cut out.

Cleaning:

Once again, with the watch cut out, the next step is to clean all dust and marks from the surface.  Even though these watches were provided to us in protective packaging and were handled only using gloves there was still dust that need removing from the surface.  In particular, the rear face of the watch had a plastic protective film which, when removed, left a slight residue on the matt black finish.  This had to be cleaned before the watch was shot and even then, a small amount of further cleaning was required during retouching.

Due to the angle at which this watch was shot, there were some areas around the edges of the strap in which the white background was visible.  These were removed using the Healing Brush tool to ensure that there is no white visible which would look out of place when the watch was added to a coloured digital background.  Attention to this level of detail is important for product photographers and we take great pride in creating images with care and precision.

The wires that were used to hold the watches whilst shooting them added a small number of tiny marks on the rear surfaces of the watch which need to be removed.  In addition the pieces of wire used to hold the watch in the correct position whilst shooting were also removed.  This was achieved by copying similar sections of strap from nearby on to a new layer and transforming them using the Warp transform tool.  The edges were adjusted and blended to match to the existing strap using the Clone Stamp Tool.

Contrast and Detail

As there are no highly reflective surfaces on the rear of the watch there was a little less work required once the cleaning was complete – although, there was more cleaning to carry out!  Great care was taken when shooting this watch to make sure that as much of the detail in the engraving on the rear of the watch was highlighted as possible.  This was achieved by placing a light on the right hand side of the watch at an oblique angle.  This produces shadows on the left edge of all of the raised features which adds definition and a feeling of depth.

I’d always envisioned a gradient in the lighting across the rear face and the lighting setup was built with this in mind.  However, it wasn’t possible to get the strength of gradient that I wanted in the same shot as the rest of the watch. Effective gradients on small surfaces are near impossible to shoot when lighting and shooting the image in one shot.  If this was a hero image I would have created the gradient in one image and lit the other aspects of the watch in numerous other images and combined them in post.  But this is just one of a series of 8 watches that were shot at the same time and the clients budget did’t stretch to complicated and time consuming composite images.

Working in this way there is no reliance upon post production to fix and correct shooting errors, we just keep shooting until we get the best image we can.  This also means that there is less time spent in post production! However, in this case the reduction in contrast was unavoidable. Therefore, we needed to boost the contrast using several Curves layers with layer masks to ensure that the changes are only applied to the face and features as required.  Various Selection tools were used to create a clean selection that changed the area of detail that we wanted and on an image with simple colours as this one, the Color Select tool was very effective.

https://youtu.be/W36Al6G2Kv0

You can also watch the video on YouTube hereand also subscribe to keep up to date with any future videos!

So there we have it… You’ve been through our full retouching workflow of three images that were provided to the client!

As you can see from the images below, other than the change of background and straightening the watch there are very few visible differences when the images are viewed at this size.  This is because we worked hard to ensure that the image was created as much as possible in-camera… This is why we are primarily photographers and use retouching to add the finishing touches to images rather than relying on in to make up for deficiencies during shooting.

Final image:

Once again the edited final image was provided to the client without a background as requested.  Therefore, we added a simple digital background that reflects and compliments the stylish simplicity of the design of the watch.  The background is simply a plain coloured black background with a radial gradient behind the watch and another, slightly darker one beneath the watch. The drop shadow is simply a single brush stroke from a soft edged brush that has been reduced in height vertically – it’s simple, yet effective!

New videos coming soon!

After a lot of work our new studio space is operational and we’re using it to shoot all manner of different projects.  If you want to see more of our work then subscribe to our YouTube channel and we look forward to hearing your thoughts on our videos!

Sharing is Caring!

We hope that you’ve found this post interesting and helpful in understanding that retouching in product and advertising photographs does not have to distort reality. It can be used to make small and relatively subtle changes that highlight and refine a product.

I’d love to hear your comments or views on any of the topics covered above so feel free to enter them down below!

The post Luxury Watch Photography – Retouching Part 3 appeared first on Product photography Leicester, UK.

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Welcome back to part 2 in the series of watch photography post-production & retouching posts. We hope that you enjoyed our behind-the-scenes retouching Part 1 post – If you’ve not yet seen it, then why not have a read through & watch the video it before moving on to Part 2?  This post continues looking at the post-production and editing of a luxury watch from Quinton Shaw.

All of the images covered in these blog posts were created to be incorporated into the product page on the manufacturers website.  These images were also required to  used to show the high quality of the construction of these watches.

Background

The client brief was to create clean and consistent images to be used on the product page on the manufacturers website for luxury watches.  The concept was to combine three images allowing clients to seamlessly scroll between three images to give a much more accurate view of the product. This approach is very similar to producing 360 spins of the product and providing this level of customer interaction has proven to increase sales conversions when shopping online.

RETOUCHING RAW image processing

The second image underwent the same RAW processing in Adobe Lightroom as shown in the first video. We’ve included it here again for completeness. In this stage, minor exposure and contrast adjustments are made to ensure that we have optimal images to continue retouching in Photoshop.  The adjusted RAW files are exported as 16bit .tif files ready to be retouched in Photoshop.  There is very little other work performed and the .tif files are used to carry out all of the retouching and create the final image.

Retouching in Photoshop

The basic workflow for retouching this image is to cut it out from the background before moving on to image retouching.  The Pen tool is used for this operation and, once mastered, is extremely powerful as producing an accurate and consistent cut-out. If you’re looking for an easy to follow tutorial on using then Pen tool, then I would highly recommend this one from Aaron Nace at Phlearn.

Cleaning:

Once the watch has been cut out, the next step is to clean all dust and marks from the surface.  Even though these watches were provided to us in protective packaging and were handled only using gloves there was still dust that need removing from the surface.
Much of this dust cannot be seen with the naked eye and accentuated by the lighting that is used to generate the clean gradients across the semi-reflective surfaces of the watch.  Either way, it is essential that it is removed!

In this case, cleaning was mainly performed using the Healing Brush tool with a small amount of Clone Stamp tool too. There were a number of gaps between the metal links in the  strap that showed the light background which also has to be removed using the Healing Brush tool.

The final section of cleaning was to remove the wires that were used to hold the watch in the correct position whilst shooting.  This was achieved by copying similar sections of strap from nearby on to a new layer and transforming them using the Warp transform tool.  The edges were adjusted and blended to match to the existing strap using the Clone Stamp Tool.

Contrast and Detail

With the cleaning completed, the remaining work was concentrated on highlighting the details on the face of the watch.  Watch manufacturers go to a huge amount of trouble to refine tiny details on watches and it is the responsibility of the product photographer to ensure that these are captured and highlighted in the images that they create.

In this case, the face was lacking a little contrast as the glass is reflecting the strobes used to light the watch.  We take time when shooting to ensure that these details are considered and that as much as possible is captured correctly in camera.  Working in this way there is no reliance upon post production to fix and correct shooting errors, we just keep shooting until we get the best image we can.  This also means that there is less time spent in post production! However, in this case the reduction in contrast was unavoidable. Therefore, we needed to boost the contrast using several Curves layers with layer masks to ensure that the changes are only applied to the face and features as required.  Various Selection tools were used to create a clean selection that changed the area of detail that we wanted and on an image with simple colours as this one, the Color Select tool was very effective.

https://youtu.be/g69F9cZKQWE

You can also watch the video on YouTube here and also subscribe to keep up to date with any future videos!

So there we have it… our full retouching workflow of the second watch image all the way through from RAW image to final image!

As you can see from the images below, other than the change of background and straightening the watch there are very few visible differences when the images are viewed at this size.  This is because we worked hard to ensure that the image was created as much as possible in-camera… This is why we are primarily photographers and use retouching to add the finishing touches to images rather than relying on in to make up for deficiencies during shooting.

Final image:

Once again the edited final image was provided to the client without a background as requested.  Therefore, we added a simple digital background that reflects and compliments the stylish simplicity of the design of the watch.  The background is simply a plain coloured black background with a radial gradient behind the watch and another, slightly darker one beneath the watch. The drop shadow is simply a single brush stroke from a soft edged brush that has been reduced in height vertically – it’s simple, yet effective!

Part 3 coming soon!

If you enjoyed this we will be publishing the final part of this series soon.  This will show the retouching of the final image which is a view of the rear engrave face of the watch.

Sharing is Caring!

We hope that you’ve found this post interesting and helpful in understanding that retouching in product and advertising photographs does not have to distort reality. It can be used to make small and relatively subtle changes that highlight and refine a product.

I’d love to hear your comments or views on any of the topics covered above so feel free to enter them down below!

 

The post Luxury Watch Photography – Retouching Part 2 appeared first on Product photography Leicester, UK.

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Retouching: Art or cheating?

Where do you stand in the great Retouching debate?  Do you think that digital image manipulation is just another avenue of artistic expression or is it misleading and even possibly unethical to retouch images?

No matter what your personal opinions are, in the modern world there is no way to escape images that have been retouched.  We see them many times every day in places such as on the television and in magazines.  The majority of the time most people can’t even recognise if an image has been through the retouching process or not, but the general assumption is that most probably have.  Retouching is no longer something out of the ordinary and has become an accepted part of 21stcentury living.

Product photography retouching

Bearing these facts in mind, retouching is often thought to be some mystic art where huge changes are made to distort the original images.  However, there is often little attention given to the much more subtle forms or retouching that are used in product and advertising photography. These techniques can be used to huge effect with small and subtle changes leading to striking final images.

In this post, I want to take a look at this more subtle side of retouching and show you my workflow in Photoshop when editing and retouching a product image.

So, let’s have a look at the starting image (SOOC – Straight Out Of Camera) and the final image.

Apart from the obvious change in composition, you’ll notice that there are no major changes to the product itself.  The biggest change is the addition of a simple background to the image.

  • SOOC Image
  • Final Image
My workflow:

Retouching is very much about personal preference and I know that everyone has their own ideas on the best way of working and there will never be a definitive right way to do things.  I’m also not saying that what I do is the best way to work. All I’m saying is that this is the way that I currentlywork.  I say “currently” as workflow is an organic thing that is always changing as my skills and methods develop.

Shooting:

I always shoot tethered in the studio because it’s so much easier to check images on a propersized screen rather than the  one on the back of a camera.  Once the images have been captured the initial retouching is carried out in Adobe Lightroom which allows the full range of RAW information captured to be used if required. Firstly, all of the captured images are reviewed and rated, but none are deleted, as you never know if parts of these images may be in some part of a composite image during retouching! The selected images are then colour corrected, then exposure, contrast, and dynamic range adjustments are made. The selected images are then exported as TIFFs ready for the retouching to begin in Photoshop.

Retouching:

Instead of trying to write about how I went about the retouching of this image I decided to take a screen recording instead. This is because it’s a very dynamic process and although I had a vision of the final image before I started the retouching, there was a certain degree of trial and error through the process.

So that you don’t have to sit through the 90 minutes of retouching, the video has been sped up nearly 10 times! As you’ll notice, there a few points when I pause to assess the image and work out what to do next!

Product photography retouching speed edit - Babyliss curling wand - YouTube

So there you have it, a speed edit of an advertising image. After retouching, I usually leave the image for 24 hours and then return to review it to look for any obvious errors or if any changes should be made. In this case, the following additional changes were made to the image which are not shown in the video above:

  • A shadow was added under the light swirl that wraps around the wand.
  • Selective sharpening using a High Pass filter and a layer mask around some areas of the curling wand.
The Final Image
Sharing is Caring!

I hope that you’ve found this post interesting and helpful in understanding that retouching in product and advertising photographs does not have to distort reality. It can be used to make small and relatively subtle changes that highlight and refine a product.

I’d love to hear your comments or views on any of the topics covered above so feel free to enter them down below!

The post Retouching product photography – Speed Edit appeared first on Product photography Leicester, UK.

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Guild of Photographers We’re Image of the Year Finalists!

The Guild of Photographers Image of the Year Finalists have been announced – and we’re in the running for 2 categories!

The competition

The Guild of Photographers runs a monthly photography competition which attracts entries from their worldwide membership.  The monthly competition contains 4 categories; Open, People, Babies & Children & Weddings. Every month there are between 1500-1100 entries.

All entries are assessed and judged by a panel of at least 5 industry leading, qualified professional photographers against strict criteria.  This approach removes the chance of personal preference and bias from the results and ensures that all images are judges fairly against the same criteria.

2018 Results

This year we’ve entered three images per month in to the Open category. These images led to a reasonably consistent set of results and we have achieved a gold, silver or bronze bar with every single image we have entered except for 1.  The running totals for 2018 are as follows:

  • 5 Gold bars
  • 19 silver bars
  • 8 bronze bars

The competition runs for 10 months of the year and once the last month’s entries have been competed the judging panel are called to the Guild HQ in Stoke-on-Trent to review the images and select finalists for the Image of the Year competition.  This process is taken very seriously and the panel vote for images in 16 individual categories. For each category 10 finalists are chosen and the winner is chosen from these 10.

This year we’re thrilled to have a total of 6 images selected as finalists in 2 different categories;

  • Commercial – 5 images
  • Creative & Digital Art – 1 image.
Commercial Category – Finalist images:
Creative & Digital Art – Finalist image:

All that we have to do now is sit and wait for the annual awards dinner in February 2019 to find out the results!  We’ll let you know how it goes!…

Why not take a look at galleries of our Product photography, Pure White Packshot photography and Still Life photography images.

Sharing is Caring!

I hope that you’ve found this post interesting and helpful in understanding that retouching in product and advertising photographs does not have to distort reality. It can be used to make small and relatively subtle changes that highlight and refine a product.

I’d love to hear your comments or views on any of the topics covered above so feel free to enter them down below!

The post Guild Image of the Year Finalists 2018 appeared first on Product photography Leicester, UK.

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