Product images are the most noticeable aspect of any product page. You want to make sure your images are attractive, readable, and impactful. There are several approaches to product photography. You can choose product on white, creative in-studio, and/or lifestyle photography.
Of all these three, lifestyle photography is considered the most dynamic because it often involves models and outdoor product photography.
What is Outdoor Product Photography?
Outdoor photography, as the name implies, is an approach that involves outdoor locations. These locations can be a parking lot, someone’s backyard, a wooded area, a beach, or even a shopping mall. The location of the shoot depends entirely on what kind of message the photographer wants to convey.
For example, outdoor product photography for automobiles often involves clean, empty roads, often surrounded by some sort of scenic beauty. This type of photography requires some planning and effort, but it can deliver excellent results. Experts recommend including at least one outdoor image on your product page.
What are its Benefits?
Many businesses are willing to spend a substantial amount of money on outdoor product photography because it offers several interesting benefits. Some of them are mentioned below:
- Natural Lighting –Most photographers love to work in outdoor settings because they can take advantage of natural lighting, especially during the Golden Hours. This is when the sun is just rising or setting and the environment has a gentle golden light. This light adds a lot of depth and drama to a photograph.
- Showcasing Scale – It can be somewhat challenging to showcase the size and dimensions of certain products in the studio environment. There are several objects in the background that can help highlight the product’s size and dimensions in an outdoor shoot.
- Movement and Dynamism – It is easier to ensure your product photograph is dynamic in an outdoor setting. These environments aren’t static and there’s always some sort of movement in the frame. Even the simple movement of leaves can add a sense of dynamism to an image, which easily draws people’s eyes.
- Unique Backgrounds – There’s only so much you can do inside a studio when it comes to backgrounds. There’s no shortage of options when it comes to outdoor locations. You can choose a gritty city backdrop, a beautiful beach, serene woodlands, and so much more.
A skilled photographer will know how to include the background and outdoor environment in your product photographs without overwhelming the product itself. They will make sure the item is still the focus of the frame and occupies a large portion of it.
Who is it for?
Outdoor product photographyis a great option for different kinds of products but it is not completely essential. Many people include outdoor shots even if their product doesn’t need them because they like the unique characteristics of this approach. Here’s a look at some circumstances in which outdoor shoots will be beneficial:
- Large Products – Products like cars, large machinery, motorbikes, etc, can benefit from an outdoor shoot because it is easier to showcase their dimensions in such cases.
- Products Made for Outdoor Use – If the item is made for outdoor use, consider incorporating outdoor locations in your shoot. For example, a pair of sports shoes may require an outdoor product photograph where a model is wearing them and performing some kind of sports activity. This showcases the product in its natural environment.
- Branding is Outdoorsy – If your brand has an outdoorsy vibe, you can benefit from outdoor product photography. For example, a fitness supplement brand may need to take some outdoor shots with a model to highlight the effectiveness of their product.
These are just some of the examples of how outdoor photography can benefit a wide range of product lines. It is a good idea to discuss the prospect with a trained and experienced photographer. They will tell you if outdoor shoots suit your particular campaign, branding, and budget requirements.
What Challenges Do Photographers Face?
Outdoor product photography can be a little tricky and photographers face some unique challenges during the sessions. Here’s a look at them:
- The dusty, windy, and dynamic outdoor environment can make shoots a little unpredictable.
- A photographer should be skilled enough to utilize natural light correctly and ensure illuminates the product correctly.
- Transporting some products to an outdoor shoot location can prove to be challenging.
- The noisy and busy outdoor environment can disrupt the shoot and make it go slower.
- If not handled correctly, products can become damaged during an outdoor shoot.
- The photographer may need to get special permission to shoot in some outdoor spaces.
- Editing is often more complicated because the photographer must ensure the colors are accurate and the image is well-balanced.
- Setting up a composition in outdoor environments can be tricky. Sometimes the background elements can overwhelm the product.
These are some of the challenges photographers face during outdoor product photography.That’s why you need to pick a professional with experience in this form, especially if you have a large inventory of products to go through.
Is Outdoor Product Photography Expensive?
This type of photography does require a lot of planning and has several unique challenges. It is a little more expensive than product on white or creative in-studio photography. However, it does offer good ROI. Ask your photographer to provide a detailed quote and determine the cost per image to understand just how much you need to invest.
In most cases, adding one or two outdoor product shots doesn’t strain the budget too much and still offers great rewards. A reliable photographer will provide straightforward advice and will let you know if it is a wise investment for you.
Outdoor product photography can be quite challenging, which is why it is a good idea to hire someone with experience in this field. Look through your local studio’s portfolio and check if they have any outdoor samples. Study their images carefully to make note of factors like light balance, color saturation, etc. If the images are great and showcase the product well, that studio may be the right choice for you.