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6 Instagram Product Photography Tips for Better Photos

January 12 2023Envision

Are you looking to take your own or have your photos taken for your product? Here are some essential tips to going about product photography. This article shares lighting techniques, background ideas, editing ideas and pricing.

1.Composition and angles

Before you get to taking your product photos, start off and think about what kind of composition looks best.The Rule of Thirds, a photo technique that is often seen as three grids on a camera can help you. Align your products on this.

Use the golden ratio. This one is a bit more advanced however it can make your images have a different look.


A common mistake while working with products is to have an uneven horizon or a distorted horizon. Sometimes it may not even be your fault! Some phone and camera lenses may distort these areas. Make sure to straight them out while using a straight guide in your editor.

Try high and low angles. Both have their advantages. High angles make sure that the images have depth. Low angles are great for some items to show scale. This is how to show scale in product photography Styling the product(s)Are you using more than one product in the shot? This can be a great idea to share the product mix. If you have different flavors think about where they can be around the composition as above

Have a focal product if possible. A good rule is to use odd numbers– but rules are meant to be broken here!

#2 Get your focus on

How do you get that sharp focus to get everything in focus? Are you finding your images blurry in some parts more then others?

One simple fix is to change your aperture. Using a higher aperture number (F-stop) will increase the focus the light INTENSITY that hits your camera. This will allow the intensity to focus on other parts of the image to get focus

For example changing the aperture from f/2.8 to f/6 will change the exposure of your image about 2 stops. This will also change the depth of your photograph.

There's no need to worry too. Modern cameras like the iphone and android devices are increasingly having more features to change the aperture.

#3 Bring in the Light

If anything up to this point has been a breeze get ready to have some fun! I’ll go over the difference between natural light and external light sources. The differences between hard light and softlight for your product photos. I will also give some resources for household items to create some great product photos

Lighting can be one of the most difficult parts of having high quality product photos for instagram. Too much or too little changes the whole setting. Different colors change the product.

The first mini tip is to use natural/sunlight. See Best Times to Take Photos. You can take advantage of windows to diffuse and spread sunlight more then direct sunlight. It should be noted that this doesn’t entirely create a nice light.

Lets go further, determine if you want a hard light or softlight. Hard light is the light that you get during noon when the sun is directly on you at its sharpest angle. Softlight looks more diffused and may be for example by a window or through a softbox.

A semi-softlight would be something like a ring light.Natural light is the most accessible, however can change. Interior and indoor forecasts and LEDs are also useful depending on the products. Other external flashes and strobes or speed lights are also helpful.

With external flashes and strobes you can imitate natural lighting. It is difficult to do the other way around.

Now look around your house. How can you change your current light? One common item is using white paper or poster board. This can move the light from one side or area to the opposite side. Another common household item is the parchment paper. This has a smoky translucent texture that is perfect for using as a lighting diffusion.

One last house item for this non-exhaustive list is using white sheets. Make sure they are white white and not off-color. This will effect your photo in the end.

#4 Design your set

Depending on the product and your desired effect here are a few set tips. This combines lighting, angles and other household items.

Design for the lighting. This is if you are using a window or a light source you can’t move too well.

Design your set to have layers to create depth. This may also include how long the overall photoshoot will take

Use household items to prop your items or add character. A common example is using tissue or paper to add depth to a sneaker. You can also prop up items from anything and keep them out of sight. One thing to be aware of before you do this is Color, reflection and shadows. Keep these out of the photos, it will save you many hours later if you are editing.

#5 Editing

While editing, fix simple things like the horizon. Fix the white balance so that the whites are true white (if desired).

Add filters to your image that will be consistent throughout the entire filter. Don’t overdo the filter too much.

#6 How Much Does a Product Photographer Cost?

There are elements to product photography that can enhance the images both through props, high quality gears and editing and more.

There are different ways to pay for product photos. Commonly it can be done by the amount of products that you would like to take photos or SKU’s. Another common way is by the amount of images that are taken and edited. Less common is the time spent while taking photographs- this may be included in the final cost.

The amount of products or sku’s is good if you need the same background and different items like bottles on display or clothing.The amount of images taken also be a way of getting charged or charging. This allows you to have the photographer work more on the individual images and edit more. You also may be given exclusive rights to these images as well.

Charging by the hour may be more costly due to the amount of time actually editing these photos, preparation, ideation and directing the concept. This is something to keep in mind. There is also a lot of flexibility with time. Generally a photographers rate will range from $100-$600, photos, design sets and talent may run around $700 - $1200 or more. Licensing for marketing and campaigns will also change your cost as well.

In addition to these for product photography there is also the expertise and the quality of a photographer or marketers work.

If you have made it this far into the article know that instagram product photography can be fun and great for your profile. Learn more about product photography

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