How do you think these pictures are done? (background)

Messages
8
Name
Tom
Edit My Images
No
#1
There is this guy who's product pictures I really like, However I'm not entirely sure as to how he is able to get such background for them.
link:
https://www.ebay.co.uk/sch/matsuiyastore/m.html?_nkw=&_armrs=1&_ipg=&_from=

As you can see the background is graduated from light grey to darker grey and also a reflection which gives a really nice look.
I have not been able to find a grey reflective background that you can purchase (you can get in black/white but not grey) , nor one that is graduated ( infact I haven't seen any graduated+ reflective backgrounds in any colour that you can purchase).
Perhaps his background isn't even grey nor graduated but he has achieved the look with lights alone? If so how do you think its done?
 
OP
OP
I
Messages
8
Name
Tom
Edit My Images
No
#2
hmm I found another images of some weird statues which appears to use the same effect/same type of background:

https://cdn.shopify.com/s/files/1/0092/2425/7632/products/ed03g_dragon_green-2_1024x1024@2x.jpg
https://cdn.shopify.com/s/files/1/0092/2425/7632/products/edb15-2_t_rex_1024x1024@2x.jpg

It appears that the background actually might be just solid colour but somehow they get the effect with lights?
But still the question is, what kind of background that is? Which is tiny bit reflective but also non-white/black or infact what colour even is the background they are using?
Has anyone seen such background for sale anywhere?
 

simon ess

Just call me Roxanne.
Messages
7,833
Edit My Images
No
#3
Almost certainly just a white or off white BG and single light or flash.

That's how I would do it.
 
OP
OP
I
Messages
8
Name
Tom
Edit My Images
No
#5
Almost certainly just a white or off white BG and single light or flash.

That's how I would do it.
How would you position the light to create such effect (in such colour) since it seems like its very well exposed without much shadows? From top and perhaps the bottom would just get illuminated by the reflective material or try to bounce some extra light with some whiteboard? Also how did it get grey since its a white background? Is it just taken in a dark room,iluminated by the single light source and the grey background is just non- illuminated area?

Completely new to this indoor photogprahy and I find some of these ways very cool,albeit a bit tricky to figure out with no prior experience :)

Oh also in my 2nd post I posted links to some 2 other images with same effect but the background for those aren't grey - do you know what's going on there?
 
Last edited:

simon ess

Just call me Roxanne.
Messages
7,833
Edit My Images
No
#6
Rather than me trying, badly, to explain the complexities of 18% grey and light fall off according to the inverse square law (all stuff worth looking up to help your understanding) I think you might be best served by shining a light on a piece of white paper or a wall and taking photos of it.

It's one of those things that is really quite simple but hard to explain properly - for me at least.
 

GarethB

Likes to peek
Messages
1,975
Name
Gareth
Edit My Images
Yes
#7
Rather than me trying, badly, to explain the complexities of 18% grey and light fall off according to the inverse square law (all stuff worth looking up to help your understanding) I think you might be best served by shining a light on a piece of white paper or a wall and taking photos of it.

It's one of those things that is really quite simple but hard to explain properly - for me at least.
:agree:

I have tried to emulate (deconstruct) particular lighting methods, and in the process, I've discovered more pleasing effects through experimentation.
It's definitely worth playing around with lighting...you might just discover something you like more than what you set out to achieve.
 
Messages
153
Name
Studio488
Edit My Images
No
#9
Its a small light table or box, plastic curve semi translucent type lit from under the table, then from the front with probably a static.
 
Messages
23,465
Name
Phil
Edit My Images
No
#10
The basic change ncept you may be missing and isn’t obvious from previous responses is that you need to treat the background as a seperate subject, and understand it needs its own light
Step 1 light the subject
Step 2 set up the background
Step 3 light the background
 
Messages
153
Name
Studio488
Edit My Images
No
#11
hmm I found another images of some weird statues which appears to use the same effect/same type of background:

https://cdn.shopify.com/s/files/1/0092/2425/7632/products/ed03g_dragon_green-2_1024x1024@2x.jpg
https://cdn.shopify.com/s/files/1/0092/2425/7632/products/edb15-2_t_rex_1024x1024@2x.jpg

It appears that the background actually might be just solid colour but somehow they get the effect with lights?
But still the question is, what kind of background that is? Which is tiny bit reflective but also non-white/black or infact what colour even is the background they are using?
Has anyone seen such background for sale anywhere?
These examples are not the same as the original links which are lit from under the plastic this would give you a gradient, then simply lighting the product carefully should not effect the background gradient.
 
Messages
10,809
Name
Garry Edwards
Edit My Images
No
#12
These examples are not the same as the original links which are lit from under the plastic this would give you a gradient, then simply lighting the product carefully should not effect the background gradient.
No.
The basic change ncept you may be missing and isn’t obvious from previous responses is that you need to treat the background as a seperate subject, and understand it needs its own light
Step 1 light the subject
Step 2 set up the background
Step 3 light the background
Yes.

The photographer has lit different shots in different ways, but has taken the easy (and better) option of adding the reflections and background in post processing. This creates consistency which, although achievable when it's all done in camera, is much harder to do well that way.
 
Messages
153
Name
Studio488
Edit My Images
No
#13
No.

Yes.

The photographer has lit different shots in different ways, but has taken the easy (and better) option of adding the reflections and background in post processing. This creates consistency which, although achievable when it's all done in camera, is much harder to do well that way.
No ? your saying the original links are not lit from under the product ? well that is simply not correct and you are wrong, In his other items for sale its easily visible that the product are lit from under a plastic sheet. these were not done in post as the artifacts on the platic can been seen throught many listings

This item is clearly lit from below as are the others, this example just shows it better.

s-l1600.jpg
 
Last edited:
Messages
10,809
Name
Garry Edwards
Edit My Images
No
#15
Sorry, but still no.

Yes, he used a plastic sheet as a product base, yes there are visible scratches on it and yes there was some level of underlighting there, clearly visible and obvious - very little, because more would have blown out the product base.

So, you're correct on that point, but you said that
These examples are not the same as the original links which are lit from under the plastic this would give you a gradient, then simply lighting the product carefully should not effect the background gradient.
There are in fact two obvious lights here. One is above and to the left and would have not completely destroyed the graduation on the background.
But the other obvious light, from the camera position, would have destroyed any gradient effect simply because there is clearly nowhere enough distance between subject and background for the ISL to do its magic.

Careful lighting here would have involved backlighting and / or rimlighting, so that none of the light that illuminates the subject can reach the background. This of course would have left the background black, leaving the photographer free to easily create a graduated effect on the background. But this isn't what happened, that frontal light would have reached the background, which is why the answer will always be "No".
 
Messages
23,465
Name
Phil
Edit My Images
No
#16
:thinking:
No ? your saying the original links are not lit from under the product ? well that is simply not correct and you are wrong, In his other items for sale its easily visible that the product are lit from under a plastic sheet. these were not done in post as the artifacts on the platic can been seen throught many listings

This item is clearly lit from below as are the others, this example just shows it better.

View attachment 260018
That item with the shadows on the underside and highlights in the top surfaces are a lit from below?

Well you’re the ‘expert’ but that seems illogical to me.:thinking:
 
Messages
153
Name
Studio488
Edit My Images
No
#17
:thinking:
That item with the shadows on the underside and highlights in the top surfaces are a lit from below?

Well you’re the ‘expert’ but that seems illogical to me.:thinking:
If you follow the post, I am saying Garry post production theory is wrong, I am saying that the links to items in the original OP post are shot on a plastic base lit from below, and as i said "then from the front......" should have added side as well, but we are not talking about acurate light placement here, the point is the prodcut and effect are achieved by a plastic sheet, light below, and then light the product.

His other examples are not shot this way and are totally different.
 
Last edited:
Messages
10,809
Name
Garry Edwards
Edit My Images
No
#18
If you follow the post, I am saying Garry post production theory is wrong, I am saying that the links to items in the original OP post are shot on a plastic base lit from below, and as i said "then from the front......" should have added side as well, but we are not talking about acurate light placement here, the point is the prodcut and effect are achieved by a plastic sheet, light below, and then light the product.

His other examples are not shot this way and are totally different.
With respect, this isn't my theory, it's simple fact and the laws of physics simply don't allow the effect to have been created without the use of post production.
I'll happily concede that the photographer may have attempted to avoid PP and I'll also concede that there are unknowns here that can only be guessed at, but even allowing for me making some bad guesses, it's still obvious enough.

There are two separate but related unknowns. The first one is the distance from the frontal light to the part of the product that it's lighting, and that's an unknown because we don't know the size of that light source and have to make allowances for the convex shape of the product, which distorts the size of the specular highlights, but because it's clear that it's a fairly large light source, it's directly in front of the subject and it's also a small subject it's reasonable to assume that it would be in the way if was really close. Also, the lighting is far from precise - people who use very precise lighting tend to find a way of getting the lighting really close when they need to, but there's no evidence of that here.

So, my guess is that the frontal light is a softbox at least 24" from the front of the subject, and I think that that's a reasonable guess.
And of course the other unknown is the distance from the subject to the background. We don't know anything about that but, as you rightly point out, the acrylic surface has loads of scratches, so it's reasonable to assume the use of a standard shooting table, with a distance behind the subject of, again, about 24"

So, and based on what we can rely on, the ISL, if the light travelled 24" to the front of the subject and then another 24" to the background, a quarter of the light that went past the subject would have hit the background and would have totally destroyed the gradient effect. There is zero visible unwanted light on the background, which proves that my "theory" must be correct.
 
Top