Wednesday, January 25, 2012

taking pictures

We bought a new softbox to photograph our work. This is what our old set up looked like...
ha ha ha... a rather Mickey Mouse set up but it worked for us! We photograph work with a long back drop that rolls off of a hanger near the ceiling and then spreads out across our dining room table.

Here is an example of the photography...

Not bad photography... but note the shadows from the handles. We have been happy with the results used with the rigged up lighting, but it's a pain to adjust and has fallen over a couple of times.

Here is our new softbox set up...

We use white foam core on each side to bounce the light around. Holding it at different angles changes how the pots are lit.

and below are the same mugs photographed with the new softbox...

Notice that the shadows are diminished. These are the photos prior to any photoshop tweaking, which we typically do. Our plan is to hang this softbox from a pulley system over our dining room table and eliminate the fact that it now hangs from a boom microphone stand. When we are not using it we can reel it up and out of the way.
Perhaps we will start a new trend... softbox lighting instead of chandeliers for dining room tables :-).

The new softbox was very inexpensive (39.99) and came with one large curly q light. An extra $20 bought you a stand to go with it. We weren't interested in the stand because we needed the light to hang overhead. The white diffuser velcros on and the whole thing folds up and fits in a storage bag. We added a layer of non-fusible pellon inside the box, lying flat on the white diffuser material... we were getting too much glare before doing that. Maybe a lower watt bulb would be the answer.

It would be great to have an extra room to have a dedicated photography set up, but for now this will have to do. Luckily we don't eat at the dining room table very often.


  1. That's fairly inexpensive my backdrop has gotten all scratched and I need another one now, so I started using gray construction paper for green ware and blog photos to save the backdrop for the better photos.

  2. Linda, as you can see this a really long roll... the part that is hanging on the floor has a nice red wine stain on it :-). Eventually we will use the whole roll and hang a new one. I think mine is still hanging in my old studio in NH, I have to remember to get it next trip.

  3. Wow- looks great and so reasonable! I still need to tweak my photos and haven't gotten to it. Great idea : foam core!! I'm heading to the store after work ;)

    The mugs look great in both photos, but I definitely see the improvement in the second.

  4. mighty good Meesh and Jeffy! my setup is ridiculously lazy, oh well....


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