Here’s a product that is a little different and, if you sell over the Internet, may well make your life a little simpler! Products, or any goods you want to sell, can be a pain to photograph well, and doing it badly can cost you money. The folks at Lasolite have come up with a simple answer!
Supplied in a standard reflector zip up bag, the E-Photomaker is a simple tent like gizmo that comes in two parts, the tent and a stiffener. Also supplied is a grey card and a small mini tripod that will hold many of today’s compact cameras.
The idea is to be able to use a single angle poise lamp and achieve almost shadow free pictures and the concept works fairly well. Erecting the tent is simplicity itself, as once opened it almost erects itself! It is packed in a folded position, similar to Lasolite’s reflector range, and needs very little encouragement to open up. The stiffening bar is attached to the back with two Velcro tabs and there you have it. Set up your angle poise, or any other directional light source on the left side of the tent and the built in reflector does the rest.
Set up your product inside the tented area, your camera on the little tripod, take a meter reading of the supplied grey card and ‘hey presto’ you have your product shot! Simple!
In practice, I don’t have an angle poise lamp and my dSLR would flatten the little tripod, but the principle remained the same. The only problem I encountered was creasing from the E-Photomaker being folded showed on the ‘infinity’ backcloth. The creases tended to come out once it was set up in a warm room for a while, helped again once the lamp was on it. Apart from that, the E-photomaker does what it says and produces almost shadow free pictures.
The only thing left to mention is putting it away! If you can fold a reflector, then you have a head start! If you can’t, then you have a head ache!! I’ve been folding reflectors (and bandsaw blades, which fold the same way) for many years and it still took me 20 minutes the first time! It needs to be laid on the floor as flat as possible before you try to fold it in the same manner. After a couple of goes, it does work and after a few more goes it becomes quite easy and you wonder what all the fuss was about, but be warned, it does take a little practice!
The E-photomaker is available here.
Test by Ian Andrews