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Any tips on shooting Product shots of Eye Glasses?

NaftoliNaftoli Member
edited April 2012 in news & discussions
just got a call for a job to shoot product shots of vintage eye glasses for a website, i have done some product photography before and i have a basic understanding of angle of incidence equals angle of reflectance, i have seamless white paper (which i will use as a sweep), a few strobes, one 16 inch Softbox, and bunch of various sized umbrellas, i do not have a lightbox. should i go for a diffuse reflection in the glass with softbox? should i put a light from below the seamless to eliminate shadows? any tips or advice would be greatly appreciated thanx


  • StroNoobStroNoob Member
    edited April 2012
    I’m sure someone here has far more experience than I, but this piqued my curiosity so I’ll jump in until a better answer comes along. I’m no pro, and I haven’t tried shooting glasses, but I think I’ll give it a try just to see how it works out; seems like a good challenge. Just my thoughts:

    I would assume you wouldn’t want a lightbox, as that would just greatly increase your chances of catching a reflection. The fewer light sources the better. I would hit it with the soft box a little to the side and above the lens. I would then slowly add reflectors/lights to fill, keeping an eye on my reflections. I’d probably either set the lens vertically (like how they appear on a face), tilted a little right or left (opposite softbox) to keep the reflections away, or I would fold the arms behind it and lay it facing up and shoot down at it, from an angle "beneath" the glasses. Use a long lens, obviously. I would also check the “incident” angle coming from my lens, to the glasses and where that points to; I would make sure there’s nothing light colored in that general area. In fact I would probably put something black there just to make sure.

    I think you could just lay it on white paper and it would be fine. Alternately, you could put it on a sheet of glass and put your white background a couple feet below that. That’d give you room to blast it pure white, and you wouldn’t have shadows – if that’s what the client wanted.

    This isn't a great image, but it has both the angles I was thinking of in it. A quick look at Google images shows that 99.99% of all the glasses shots are like the bottom one (I would come at less of an angle). Though there were a few straight on...

  • thanx did a google search myself the other day, prob gonna shoot the way the second shot is oriented just with the camera angle a little lower and a bit more to the left, gonna try starting with one 16inch Softbox 3 ft away from glasses on camera right, well c what happens
  • turns out i didnt get the job B/c im to expensive, go figure, anyway the assignment intrigued me so i borrowed my moms reading glasses and shot them for a while,

    i started off with my 70-200 but then switched to a 50 due to DOF, The setup was one speedlight in a 16inch softbox to camera right, i set the glasses down on seamless sweep of paper camera at F11, 1/200,ISO200, image it looked okay but i was getting small shadows on the paper i then tried putting a speedlight from below as fill image this basicaly eliminated the shadows but then i lost definition in the glass.

    both photos r as shot out of camera with only very minor exposure adjustments in post. another point is that even at f11 the dof is so small if i want to get the whole glasses in focus id have to take about 5 shots, unless i use a tilt shift, i wonder if pro product photographers use a TS for eyeglasses, any advice would be appreciated
  • i probably should fix the exposure more but this illustrates the point
  • maybe if i use a larger key light, but i dont have a softbox larger than 16 inches, i have 45 and 60 inch umbrellas but im afraid the spill will make me lose dimension
  • Interesting. The shallowness of the DOF surprises me, but I'm new to this studio stuff.

    Personally I wouldn't hesitate to stop down a bit more if I could get it all in one slice. But I'd use my 100mm macro which shines between f11-f13 anyway; I think I could get away with f16 on a cropped sensor without much noticeable softening. You could also pull it back a little and crop a bit to get a little more in.

    The shadows in the first don't really bother me, gives it a bit of depth. Of course if the customer wants white neither is going to fly. Agreed that the second shot lost a lot of definition in the glass. If you're not opposed to PP a bit of sharpening or even a high pass filter makes transparent objects pop off the page.

    I'll see if I can dig up a pair of glasses tonight and give it a shot; maybe learn something.
  • thanx stronoob, the loss of Dof has to do with the subject to camera distance the closer the subject the less DOF, i saw a tutorial on jewelry photography and the guy used white plexiglass mabe ill try that.
  • StroNoobStroNoob Member
    edited April 2012
    Yeah, I understand the factors that affect DOF, but it's not instinctual to me on small objects like product shots. I would have thought that you could have gotten the whole set of glasses within focus at f/11.

    I never thought about plexiglass, that's a good call. I picked up a couple of 12"x12" squares of black and white granite from Home Depot that work really well. The black isn't completely black and the white not totally white, but it's no problem to get them to photograph that way. They're heavier than plexi would be, but very rugged. I was lighting stuff on fire on the black granite a couple weeks ago and it didn't leave a mark :).

    Found this place in a quick search. All kinds of acrylics and polys in any shape you want. White, black, colored, colored transparent, clear, frosted. All kinds of fun to be had:

  • thing is for glasses i think id rather not have a reflection, i tried putting a sheet of glass over my seamless but i didnt like the reflection,
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