Product Photography using Lightbrush Technique
Hello! My name is Leo Zank and I do professional product photography in Hong Kong and Macau. Today I want to tell you about one technique with nearly infinite potential - Light Brush photography.
Light brush technique is one of the ways to do commercial product photography, using only simple setup and one source of light. This technique exists for more than one hundred years and it is reborning nowadays empowered by digital photography.
Highly reflective glass objects are always tough challenge for product photography. You cannot produce good images without blocking all the reflections of light and environment, when you are shooting glasses, bottles, plates, etc.
One of the ways to produce good commercial photography of such objects is to use so-called "Lightbrush Photography".
The principal of this photography is very easy: you are putting your camera on a tripod and your object on a dark background, setting your camera to long exposure and lighting your object with lightbrush.
There are few commercial lightbrushes available on the market, but you can easily make your own with just a torch and black paper.
Photographic process itself consists of few dozen shots when you are lighting desired parts of the object.
I got this elegant bottle of vodka as a present from Ukraine and decided to try lightbrush technique. I wanted to capture beautiful golden color of pepper vodka, together with elegant curves of the bottle and sophisticated design of the label. Below you can see all the shots I made with lightbrush.
After shooting I uploaded all the images to Photoshop as layers then I put layer mask on each layer and used black soft brush to develop details. After finishing with each two layers I merged them and put mask again to develop next layer details. Finally I got the following result.
In the next few articles I will show you how to do your own "light brush" from small torch with different DIY accessories, and how to stack and edit such photographs in Photoshop to create final attractive result.