So for Two Bears studio, it's pretty much been architecture and interiors photography for as long as we can remember but of late an opportunity came up to try our hand at shooting some food and drink photography with the amazing hamper company Imp & Maker based here in Lincolnshire. Now it’s not an area that we have dipped our toes into before but one that has been on the radar and holds great appeal. Combining two big passions of ours, photography and food seem like a match made in heaven so why not dive in with both feet.
After an initial discussion with the guys at Imp & Maker a problem that they were having with their old photography was that products have a habit of being swapped/removed/introduced to all the various hampers. They are an ever evolving entity and it can be very expensive to reshoot hampers every time this happens or indeed photograph items to try and drop in and blend in photoshop. So the bottom line for this was that we needed flexibility and lots of it - how do we then photograph the hampers in such a way that we can easily update the visuals and change out that product which is no longer part of said hamper.
For us the answer was to create for Imp & Maker their very own top-down scene creator. This allowed us to provide complete flexibility that future-proofed all of the imagery whilst providing beautiful visuals that would convey the expertly tailored hampers that are on offer at Imp & Maker. Another benefit of this top-down approach is that the buyer can instantly see all of the products and understand exactly what the contents of said hamper are. Researching hamper photography and speaking with the team at Imp & Maker a complaint of the traditional hamper photography is that products can often get hidden behind other more dominating products or can get lost amongst the scene and the props - shooting top-down allows us to make sure everything is on show.
To create the scene creator you need a backdrop that is fairly neutral and randomized - our choice was a white marble food photography backdrop. It's important that the background is randomized so that you have the ability to move products around easily and essentially cover your steps. If it was a patterned tile for instance you would be severely restricted in how you arrange products on the background after they have been shot. So once you have your background it's a case of maintaining the same lighting for every product so that your shadows and light in general is constant and so everything can come together in post nice and smoothly. When shooting we shot every product in the same 3 orientations so that we have that flexibility in post to construct the scene and create a visually interesting scene. Once everything was shot we also went back through the products and reshot any items that lent themselves to being a bit more organic - whether that was a bunch of nuts falling out of the packet or an explosion of pomegranate. It's those elements that help add a new dynamic to the scene and stop them from looking stagnant.