Technique of the Week
DIY White Seamless Product Photos with the Canon 320EX II Speedlite
I went out and bought Canon's new 320EX II Speedlite in order to shoot basic product photo-style shots of items for the web and to experiment with off camera flash techniques. Here are the results from my shoot. I can tell you that this took a lot of experimenting. I took full advantage of the 320ex's ability to trigger the camera's shutter. This allowed me to reposition the flash without moving the camera. Now the difficulty with small spaces and smaller products is that it can be hard to reduce shadows on your backdrop without blowing out your subject,
I found that placing my objects on a white seamless background (on top of my dresser) and a reflector the right with my flash to the left, I could balance my exposure without the need for too much post production.
I stood over the flower arrangement with the flash at a downward 45 degree angle cheated toward the background. In the future, I'll use a light stand because this method is a bit imprecise.
I played around with using both the on camera and external flash units to try and focus light from the on camera flash on the subject and the external flash on the background, but could not find the right mix to get a good exposure. The best result and the one on this page was with just the external flash.
The inspiration for this at-home shoot was this post on Zack Arias' blog. Check it out here.