Household Studio Photography for product photography (Budget Photography)

Good lighting will change a photo dramatically, but if you're just starting out as a photographer, can't access the studio right now and/or don't have access to hundred dollars worth of lighting gear then this post is for you. I am not in any way saying that this is better than high quality photography gear, but I'm also a student photographer and I don't have lighting gears just yet. These are just some tips and tricks to creating dramatic photos in a budget.

Theres only two main things you need to shoot in a budget!

1. Source of Lights

First of all you'll need to find your source of light. Make sure you plan out your day as you could make use of natural lighting. If perhaps you are wanting more flexibility on coloured lighting and of how bright your lighting shows then I suggest shooting indoors with artificial light.

a) Natural Light examples:

In this example I placed my materials outside (around noon) with my backdrop items (see 2 for backdrop). I wanted to get those shadows, but also create a warm and bounced light for my fill light. For optimum natural lighting I suggest to shoot at around 4pm-5pm for the golden hour lighting. *For those who dont know what golden hour lighting is its basically just before the sun sets. Golden hour lighting produces warm natural light. It is the time of the day that the sun is near the horizon, glowing and just about to set.

b) Artificial Light example:

I played around with lighting that I had around the house. My iPad acted as a fill light and my iPhone flash as key light. Of course this was hard to set up as I dabbled on where i wanted my light sources to be coming from. But you may need a stand or just somewhere to stand your light sources from. I had the fill light (iPad) sitting underneath this flower emitting a pink whitish hue, and for my key light I was holding it with my free hand. I wanted the key light (iPhone flash) to be able to just hit the pearls to create that shine effect.

If your iPhone flash is too bright for your liking and its making your photos too washed out, you can either fix your ISO or diffuse your iPhone flash. To diffuse the flash I used tissue to cover up the flash. Depending on how soft or harsh you want your light to be you can fold the tissue to make it more opaque when light comes through.

other materials you could use as artificial lights are:



-neon signs

-literally almost anything that produces enough light to come through your photos!

2. Backdrop

Now for backdrop you'll need something clean and empty. I do have some 3x5 metre coloured fabrics laying around but for those who may not have this you can also use your bedsheets. I know right bedsheets! It works so well and everyone has this in the house. *Make sure your backdrop is clean and ironed if you don't want to spend too much editing the backdrop later on.

Materials I use for the backdrop settings are simple:

-portable clothes hanger -bedsheets/fabrics

-mini table up to your waist or legs


pictured are the materials: green fabric, pegs, and portable table.

pictured are the materials: portable clothes hanger, portable table, and green fabric clipped by pegs.

Sometimes working around with what you already have might be a good practice before buying expensive photography gear.

Try these out! ....aaaaand you're ready to shoot!

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