TTT – Anatomy of a Product Shot

Curvature of the spine

In this week’s Tuesday Technique Topic, I’d like to take you through the thinking that went into a product shot that I did a couple of years ago and present you, the reader, with a little challenge.

Graffiti Anatomy

First of all, let me talk a little bit about the product here.  As you might guess, the product is the wonderful spine with a spray paint can actuator for a head, which was created by the wonderfully talented Scottish artist Chris Alexander who also founded Creology, which is focused on the study of creativity.  This piece is called Graffiti Anatomy, of which Chris created a total of 10; the choice of the color schemes were up to the purchaser, which made this truly a one-of-a-kind item.

The challenge in photographing the amazing Graffiti Anatomy was in picking up the high gloss finish, so that the shiny nature of the finish showed up really well.  As I truly enjoy the challenge of photographing shiny objects, this was a fun shoot and I thought that the product table would provide a nice surface, as I could pick up a cool bit of reflection as well.

When I first looked at setting up this shot, I felt that the Graffiti Anatomy looked a bit ‘naked’ and alone without something to offset it in the image.  As luck would have it, I have this small blue vase in my studio, which was both complementary in color and provide a nice bit of counterpoint to the curvature of the spine (yes, bad pun…).

The rest was all up to figuring out how many lights to use and placing them, which leads to my reader challenge:

  • How many lights did I use and what was their placement (hint: this may be a little tricky).

I look forward to your answers and hope you enjoyed this post!