Flat lay shots are a great way to practise both composition and lighting techniques. They can be used to highlight a particular product or a product in a environment. They take practise to get right but are a great way to hone your photography skills or to keep your skill set sharp.
Be it a warm colourful shot like the one above or a more classic shot like the one below.
Shot was taken with a Nikon D7200 camera with a Sigma 40mm f/2.8 lens. Lighting from a Godox 860ii N flash triggered with a Godox X-Pro N. A strip box softbox with grid used as a modifier. Several images and exposures combined during post production.
Being a photographer I often get asked about what’s creates the best images ? Is it all down to mega pixels or is a particular brand of camera who’s the best and so on.
Over the years I’ve shot with most camera brands including Fuji, Olympus, Canon, Nikon and Sony amongst others. When it comes to mega pixels around 25 million is enough for the vast majority of work. You will only notice the difference on higher mega pixel cameras when printing huge banner size prints but this can be negligible for commercial work or landscape work. This is due to ever advancing AI scaling software in recent years.
When it comes to brands of camera all cameras have their strengths and weaknesses, some brands have different colour sciences, camera button layouts are different when looking at ergonomics. This boils down to how do you work as a photographer and which brand offers a camera body that will work for you in terms of your work flow. I have used and invested in heavily in both Nikon and Canon over the years with photography work primarily Nikon, video work mainly Canon.
Lenses now this is we’re a major difference can be made in image quality as you do get what you pay for in terms of image quality. Yes there is a major difference in image quality when comparing images taken with a £500 lens vs high end glass costing £1,500 plus.
To get the very best images from your camera body and sensor you need to invest in glass. But think of this a part of a long term investment as these lens will work across generations of camera bodies as you upgrade over the years. This is mainly why photographers stick with a particular brand due to investment in the lenses.
Another factor here can also be how you shoot your images format wise. To get the very best in terms of the image format when the image is saved you really need to be shooting in RAW format not JPEG. RAW is the equivalent of shooting a digital film negative and allows you a huge processing advantage during post both in terms of image quality but also image detail and data.
But also with RAW images the software you use during post production and your level of knowledge also affects the end result too.
But the main advantage in terms of image quality and the quality of a photograph is you ! Your are the one that not only spots an image but creates a composition and takes the shot. You are the one that controls the camera settings, picks the lens and so on.
So the point I’m making here is the camera is only as good as the photographer using it. Practise, practise, practise I’ve done photography for over 30 plus years and I never stop learning. There is always new equipment, lenses, cameras, lighting, software evolving all the time.
So the camera is a tool to capture a shot, a moment in time, a photograph buts its you that spots this moment and decides to capture it so the quality of the image is down to you. Don’t get all caught up in the mega pixel and hardware race a camera is simply a tool to record, capture an image.
Have fun, enjoy creating the moments and learn to hone your skill set and craft.
If your looking to sell or trade in your camera gear, or are looking to upgrade or buy pre-owned camera gear then I can highly recommend MPB - www.mpb.com .
There are a world wide company offering excellent customer service and an awesome range of used camera equipment including all makes of camera, lens’s, accessories, lighting and much more.
i have put a YouTube video review of my experience with them below due to my excellent first hand experience with them.
If you are looking to get into video creation, setup a YouTube channel we’re do you start when it comes to video tools to create content with. Do you shoot 1080p HD or 4K Ultra HD ?
4K is prioritised by YouTube but this is more expensive to buy into and YouTube content is still dominated 1080p HD content with this the most watched format for video content. Also working with HD content is far easier than working with 4K when it comes to PC / Mac hardware.
There have been a growing list of online creators going back to creating content in 1080p HD including the likes of Casey Neistat.
One of the most popular cameras used for YouTube content and by content creators is the Canon M50 mirrorless camera. This is a fantastic camera for photography but even better when it comes to video due to Canons dual pixel autofocus. This camera can shoot in 1080p HD but also 4K too this camera comes highly recommended.
Busy updating portfolio with new work and projects the shot below is a more moody shot than I normally shoot. This was inspired by a great photography channel off YouTube I’ve followed for many years been watching a lot of YouTube during this coroner virus lockdown. This is a great channel to follow and learn from if your wanting to learn product photography or seek inspiration check out Botvidsson.
I decided to shoot this with continuous lighting instead of the usual wireless lighting and strobes I would normally use. So one LED light panel was used and shot with my smaller mirrorless camera Canon EOS M50 with a 24mm f/2.8 STM prime lens. I used this lens after one of our Flickr followers asked to see an image taken with this lens.
Image pretty much straight from camera.
You invest a lot of money in your camera lenses with some lenses costing thousands of pounds. The main lens elements are often coated with many layers and coatings which enhance colour, saturation, sharpness also help remove ghosting, fringing and chromatic aberrations.
When lenses are being used your lens front element gets a lot of stick from dirt, moisture and other elements. You will clean your lens regularly when in use as you do this you will remove or damage these coatings over time and scratch your lenses also.
A simple, cost effective way to protect your lens with no impact on your images or video quality is to invest in a UV lens filter. These will protect your lenses from the above but you do get what you pay for.
There are many brands well worth using I’ve always used and trust Hoya Pro 1 Digital Filters but other brands worth looking at include B&W, K&F. It’s far cheaper to replace a lens filter than a lens.
So a must have when you get your new lens.
The Canon EFS 24mm F2.8 STM Lens is a cracking lens that is pin sharp and creates stunning bokeh. It’s also a bargain price lens which can be got for around the £140.00 mark cheaper if you don’t mind buying pre-owned off EBay or MPB.
Where this lens really excels is in video use with a quick almost silent focus, this really is a capable lens a bargain and a must have lens if your a content creator. An excellent lens for any Canon M50 users out there.
TIP : Always put a high quality UV filter on your lens. The high quality ones have no impact on your images or video but they will protect your lens elements but also lens coatings from wear and tear. Far cheaper to replace a filter than a lens.
Behind the scenes of a Porsche GT4 car shoot using light painting techniques. This goes through equipment used, equipment settings, tips and tricks and photoshop post production step by steps enjoy.
Had this stunning car pull in front of me had to take a shot but no camera had to rely on my trusty Galaxy S6 camera phone. You can create stunning images with any camera.
So to get this blog underway posting some of my portfolio work some old some new to get things moving. This is a shot done some time ago a truly stunning motor more on how I did this shot see my Flickr page.
Hi and welcome to our blog my name is Dennis I am the lead photographer and owner of GrimLight / GrimLight Photography.