Industrial Product Photography. Challenges and Solutions
There are numerous challenges that a photographer may face while shooting industrial objects. Below are a few examples of these challenges and their solutions:
1. Shooting large pieces of industrial machinery can be tricky, especially if they are located in a fully operational environment. Taking still shots of the piece can be extremely difficult when the equipment is running, not to mention the vibrations on the floor on which you put your tripod.
Solution: Shoot at night and rely solely ambient light. Unfortunately, this would require extensive editing to arrive at the finished image.
2. Sometimes, a perfect image requires the photographer to take the shot from great heights and this could include being suspended from a forklift & balancing atop a shaky wooden platform. Click here to see top shot of a workstation. Solution: Turn off the forklift engine, let the skid stop shaking, and enable the camera’s “mirror lockup”. I would also recommend using a tripod and a wireless remote shutter in order to ensure that there is absolutely no movement.
3. Every once in awhile, it is necessary to take photos of a machine located in small storage. If the piece is too large to be removed from the storage, it can be rather challenging to obtain the right lighting direction for shooting within such a confined space. In such situation, ambient light cannot be used. Solution: Use dispersed strobe lights directed at the ceiling and wrap the object with white backdrop to avoid colour reflections from the surrounding walls.
4. How about shooting a long assembly line when there is not enough room to catch entire piece in one shot? Solution: Take a few or a series of images and stitch them together afterwards. HINT: make sure you shoot in HDR and RAW format.
5. Rubber pieces like gaskets are distorted and often do not lay flat. Solution: Cover it with glass sheet to eliminate vertical distortion and use polarized light. Horizontal distortion can then be removed with final editing.
To see some examples of industrial photography challenges please click to my Portfolio - Industrial Photography