360 degree product photography is not so difficult to do as it may seem at first. It is made by a simple series of pictures that are taken at the intervals of several degrees and can be composed of both 8 and 360 photos taken while moving the subject to each degree. Let’s find out how to do it with your DSLR and smartphone.
360 product photography is the latest trend in product photography. Sellers use this technology to show their products from all sides and make this item closer to the potential client. 360 degree product photography is not so difficult to do as it may seem at first. It is made by a simple series of pictures that are taken at the intervals of several degrees and can be composed of both 8 and 360 photos taken while moving the subject to each degree. Let’s find out how to do it with your DSLR and smartphone.
If you want to make the same photo of your subject for your site, follow our instructions to do it yourself.
In fact, this kind of product photography is not only a beautiful view of your goods, this is one way to increase your sales. So, why do you need it?
1. Your customer can “touch” a product
It helps reduce the number of products returns, since buyers will perfectly consider every detail of your good from all its sides that are difficult to see after simple photography.
2. You can stand out from the crowd
How many sellers have 360 product photos in their catalogs? The answer is small! You show yourself as a professional seller who cares about what the product looks like, what first impression it will have and how well a person will study the goods before buying it.
3. Creative approach to sales
If we compare 360 photos with videos, then according to statistics we found out that the buyer most often chooses the goods with 360 photos, because people like to control the examination of the goods themselves, study it and stop it when they want to consider any detail. If the video needs to be stopped to review, then with 360 photos everything is much easier.
4. Saves money
If you buy Foldio360 Orangemonkie light box, turntable and software, you buy a ready-made small studio for your product photography. You don’t have to ask freelance photographers to do it, you just turn it on and make beautiful photos even on your smartphone.
5. Not for all products
At home you can take 360 product photography only for small goods like jewellery, shoes, equipment, toys, and statuettes. If you want to take photos of cars or furniture, you can use a big turntable or just draw a 3D model.
6. Can be published through a code
After taking a 360 photo, the software lets you download the code. You can insert it and publish on your website only. Yes, you can use 360 product photos on Amazon, eBay, Instagram, ETSY, but as a .gif or .MP4 file. It means you can’t rotate it on these websites, watch as a video – which is a big minus.
7. Trend on the websites
Many sellers start using this kind of showing their goods on Amazon and eBay. It helps raise sales twice in several months. A product without 360 view looks dull and simple. How to show that namely your product must be bought? Try 360 product photography.
A PRODUCT WITHOUT 360 VIEW
A PRODUCT WITH 360 VIEW
In fact, it is not so difficult to get 360 degree product photography. There are only several steps to be followed. I took pictures both on the DSLR camera and on the iPhone fixed on a tripod.
Set the background. I used the white background that was bundled with Lightbox.
Adjust the light. If you use lamps, then put them on both sides so that your area is as bright as possible. In the case you use a lightbox, simply turn on the light.
Set your panel for 360 product photography in the middle and plug it in. Since the connection socket of foldio360 is at the front, it does not look very attractive, but the quality of the photos won’t be affected.
Run the foldio360 product photography application and connect to your panel. For this, run the Bluetooth and find the panel in the list of possible connections.
Place your phone or camera on a tripod as close to your object as possible, so that there is an inch of free space from the bottom of the subject in the frame. Thus, it will be easier to cut and place your image on a white background. If you photograph something that might reflect, (for example, if this object has a display or it is made of the reflective material such glass), place a sheet of paper or cloth in front of your camera to avoid unpleasant reflections. If this has already happened, you need to retouch every photo with the reflection of your phone or camera. 360 product photography must be perfect.
Click on the 4 orange bars in the corner of the screen to select the application mode. There are only four of them:
Smartphone – in case you are going to take photos on the device from which you have started the 360 product photography app.
DSLR – if you want to take photos using a camera. Be careful – the color settings in the application do not work and the quality of the photos fully depends on your camera.
Video – in case you want to make a 360 video. The settings are the same. It is used rarely, but sometimes it is very useful. In such a mode only the smartphone camera is used.
Turntable control – runs a “field” in which you can simply control your 360 product photography turntable. You can move it constantly to a certain degree. It is rather a useful feature in case your DSLR camera does not support wireless monitoring and you do not want to take photos on your smartphone. But in this case, you will still need a control panel, even a wired one, because even one light movement can ruin your entire 360 product photography.
Set up the camera. My settings were as follows: 1/160, 22, ISO 100. Turn off the stabilization on the lens, which can greatly hinder the shooting. Select the DSLR mode we described in step 6 and choose your camera from the list. There are two versions of 360 cameras product photography. If there are some problems with Nikon1 for instance, Nikon 2 will definitely work. Take a test photo by tapping in the middle of the screen.
1. Select the smartphone by clicking on the four bars in the corner.
2. Click on the horizon alignment button and align your tripod along the strip in the middle of the screen.
3. Set your subject in the middle of the screen using the scale.
4. Set the correct white balance. I recommend leaving it at 0 point, or making -2, but no less.
5. Adjust the exposure, set it no more than 10, you need everything around the object to turn white, but do not light the object itself, make sure that the outlines remain clear-cut.
6. Turn on the 360 product photography panel's lighting. It makes little sense if you already have good lighting, but can help a little bit.
7. Set the number of photos you want to take. The maximum number is 48. The more photos you choose, the smoother your object will rotate while 360 product photography scrolling. If you take 24 photos, the gaps between the photos will be 15 °, if 36 then °, respectively 48 - °. I used 24 photos because the more photos you take, the more time you need to spend on image processing in Photoshop if you want to get the perfect image.
8. Set the rotation speed of the panel. I recommend setting the speed to 1x, as this will increase the amount of shooting time only for a minute, but in this case, your camera will have time to capture the necessary frames.
9. Press start and do not touch the phone again until the end of shooting.
Upload all your photos to your computer and open Photoshop or any other photo editing program. You need to retouch the photo, which I will tell you about in the paragraph about retouching 360 photos.
Click on the image of your subject in the corner, and then on the key icon. Here you can adjust the exposure, white balance, as well as crop the photo. In most cases, your photos are ready for use, after such retouching. If not, upload the photos to the computer and finish 360 product photography retouching.
Having finished the 360 product photo retouching, open the Spinzam site, go through a short registration and click the Upload button in the corner. Upload all your photos to the site. After the operation is finished, you will see your pictures on the site.
Click on the picture of your object in the corner. Your 360 photo is ready and you can rotate it. If you want, you can upload it to the cloud by clicking on the arrow in the rhombus or upload the archive to your computer by clicking on the arrow in the square.
Find in the list of your works on the site and choose the one you want. Click the Share button and copy the link to the code page of your site. Now you have a photo of your product on the site.
You can go to the 360 product photography studio or make the photographs yourself. For example, the most popular Imajize will make photos of your items and give you a ready 360 degree photography product for $100 per month. The runtime can be from 1 day to the whole week, depending on how many products you need to shoot and how fast your goods can be sent to the studio. Applying to the studio may be unsuitable for someone and you may prefer doing it yourself. You need to buy special equipment and learn how to do 360 product photography no worse than in the studio. In the 360 product photography tutorial, you will find all the necessary information and instructions what you might need to do high-quality 360 photos yourself.
The first and most necessary thing to take 360 product photography is to buy a turntable for 360 degree product photography. You can do it yourself, but it will be a shaky construction which you need to manage yourself and you can make a lot of mistakes. There are dozens of offers in Amazon for the purchase of such an automatic panel. One of the most suitable variants is Foldio360 Orangemonkie. It is the best choice not only because of the quality of performance but also Foldio360 product photography software which is very good in the creating of these pictures what will be talked about later.
The price of this turntable was $120 dollar, which is quite a lot, but it's worth your money as soon as you start using it. There is something special for you in the package - 3 different plugs for the outlet for different countries. It’s very convenient and clever of the guys from Orangemonkie. You don’t need to buy anything after the buying – everything is in a box. The turntable for 360 product photography has a backlight on the reverse side which adds enough light that reflects from the background and creates the even light.
The only disadvantage of Foldio360 is the cable that sticks out from the front part when it is connected. It can be somehow rolled up but you should find a way how to do it. This thing spoils the view of 360 product photography turntable but it does not influence the quality of the work.
To work with the Foldio360, you will need a smartphone with 360 product photography app to manage this turntable. You can also use your smartphone as a camera. To create 360 product photography, it is possible to use a smartphone and the iPhone 6, because these gadgets give you a quite good quality shooting. Besides, on the phone product 360 photography is done in 5 minutes thanks to the application. In order to take good pictures on a smartphone you will need a phone with a camera starting at 12MP, do not chase the number of megapixels in the camera of the phone. In fact, it is important to choose the size of the matrix and the camera's aperture. Any flagship of a well-known company is suitable for creating 360 cameras product photography, as high-quality matrices are usually installed in most of them.
To receive product photography 360 degree on your DSLR, the process can take you a lot of time, because you have to retouch each photo separately, deleting the background and making some changes. If you are not sure how to shoot 360 product photography on the camera, watch some tutorials first. Also, the camera requires a more detailed setup and the presence of a tripod. You should remember that not every camera is suitable for 360 product photography. You need a camera that supports the control panel so that your smartphone can connect to it. The same problem with the DSLR shooting is that you will need to do all the gluing on the computer, downloading files to other programs, or to a free site and use 360 product photography service from Orangemonkie - Spinzam. If your camera does not support a remote control, you can use the Foldio360 to rotate the platform in steps of several degrees and take pictures, but you need to purchase at least a USB remote control or manage the camera through the computer because even the slightest fluctuation can ruin everything. We recommend you not to bother shooting on the camera, as 360 view product photography cannot be brought closer, and the quality of modern phones is not lower than the quality of cameras in this case.
The most necessary thing for making 360 product view photography is a tripod. This is the part without which it is almost impossible to make such photos. If you are going to take a photo on the camera, get a small tripod, on which you can put the device. It must not be too huge and clumsy, ideally - it should stand inside the lightbox, directly opposite the platform. It is advisable to purchase a tripod from Manfrotto, namely MTPIXI-B PIXI. Manfrotto is a quality mark. This tripod will definitely be the best of what you have seen, and the price is very small.
Since 360 product photography is taken with the smartphones, you should buy a small flexible tripod for the phone. There is no need to waste money on expensive tripods for $100 as they will fulfill the same function that is performed by the ARNIL Tripods. And the price is 10 divided. Besides, it has the same support for the DSLR camera.
You will need very perfect and uniform lighting for 360 product photography, as to all the product photography that you could make. You need hard and direct light. The first thing you can use is something like stroboscopes; they provide direct and intense light. Two lamps of 200 watts are enough for the 360 product photography, which is described in the article. If you do not want to suffer from the constant adjustment of light and background, I recommend buying Lightbox. An excellent indoor Lightbox gives enough lighting for 360 product photography. In this article I use Lightbox Fotodiox 24x24 for a 360 degree product photography, it provides hard and bright light, and its size is enough to place there most of the items that you have. Ensuring uniform illumination of the subject ensures that all who will look at your 360 product photography will get an excellent view when they start to rotate your product.
Uniform white background without corners - this is the main thing that you need. If you want to make it yourself and light up it with lamps, then you have to purchase several meters of white paper. I recommend buying a roll of white paper, about 50 meters. When it gets dirty, you could just tear off the dirty part and throw it away. This is enough for the first time. But you will tire of continually fixing it to the wall, installing a light, and therefore I recommend buying a Lightbox with built-in Lighting, for a price of about $ 100. It will save you the time you spend on creating a studio. Moreover, backgrounds are included in almost all Lightboxes, and Fotodiox consists of 4 backgrounds - black, white, gray and blue. Of course, you can buy backgrounds if necessary, but the main thing is doing not make a mistake with the size. To fasten the background on the Lightbox, you need to fix Velcro by stapler on it, as is done with the backgrounds that come with it in the kit. If you want to take 360 product photography on a non-white background, you need to put a piece of paper, cloth or background of the same color on top of the platform to easily place the object on this background color.
It was necessary to spend much more time and effort to make 360 product photography. And to buy an application, it was required to pay the reasonably large amount. Now you can find many 360 product photography software free in the network.
Foldio360 is a free application for your smartphone and is the best application I've seen to create 360 degree product photography because you connect to your platform via Bluetooth, configure the camera, click on the descent and your 360 degree photography product is already ready. Also, the guys from OrangeMonkie offer a web version of this program in a network called Spinzam which is now in the beta state, but it allows you to download your photos for free and create 360 product photography. The peculiarity of the mobile version is the ability to edit all images at once using levers, and then save the changes and send them on your pc. You can post all your pictures to a computer or use the cloud from Spinzam to store 360 product photography.
Imajize is one of the most popular websites for creating product 360 photography. It's one of the oldest sites has a very complex system, despite its professionalism. To upload photos to this site you need to register, create a project, fill out a whole list of unnecessary information, and only then upload a photo. In my opinion, this is a very long and pointless process. After downloading my pictures from the phone to this site, I waited a very long time until my product 360 photography was ready. Spinzam did the work with 36 photos taken on the DSLR camera, which weighs in at about 120MB in a few seconds. Imajize could not do the same more than10 minutes with pictures in tenfold smaller size.
Sirv can compete with Spinzam regarding providing services to create 360 degree product photography. They have both paid and free services. Sirv works very fast, you just need to upload photos to their site, and in a few seconds you get product 360 photography. Registration on the site and constant imposition buy a paid version a little annoying. The design of an average-level site, but it does its job, and that's important. Sirv at once gives a link to your 360 product photography, and you can post it on your site, so you do not need to look for it anywhere.
The company provides paid services to create product 360 photography. In fact, OrangeMonkie is a copy of them, but they are cheaper, more creative and more qualitative. If you browse the goods and services that Iconasys provide - selling lighting, turntable, and equipment for 360 degree product photography, will become clear that OrangeMonkie took an example from them. The most unpleasant in this company are really enormous prices for everything. The computer 360 degree product photography software will cost you $249. You can buy all the equipment for this money that I used for product 360 photography for this article. I decided not to pay such a large sum for it, and after watching the work of this program in YouTube, I realized that this is a useless program that does the same functions as the programs above but for money.
Another free program for creating 360 product photography from shutter stream. Unlike the first 3, it works after installation on your computer. The use is not online very convenient for someone, for someone not. But the difference is that online services represent free storage of all your 360 product photography on your cloud, and programs installed on your computer use your hard drive space. This program is analogous to the software from Iconasys. Webrotate360 only works for free. It is convenient and straightforward. It instantly creates 360 degree product photography, and most importantly - it allows you to edit it later. Background removal on all photos is another advantage of this program.
Magazine retouching of the objects for 360 product photography is a very difficult job, not even difficult, but a long one. If you have enough patience and time – watch the video "360 degree product photography how to edit".
In the video, I do pro retouch of one of the 24 photos.
First of all, I do is color correction, add contrast, brightness, and saturation of the photo. I correct the white balance in Camera Raw.
Then, using the Clipping & Path technique, I cut out the object on a white background. Now, the background is monochromatic.
Like I said – the screen reflected everything that was in front of it – the camera, lightbox and my room. To improve the image, you need to make it completely black, using a brush. Be attentive not to go over the edges to keep the look natural of the screen.
It is necessary to remove small dust particles, rubs and glare from the object.
Add color saturation.
You’ve probably noticed how often this kind of photos does not occur in the web sites like Amazon or Ebay. The fact is that these platforms still, like many e-commerce websites do not support iframe code that gives out most of the services and programs for creating 360 product photos. The way out is to create Gif or MP4 files to upload them to these e-commerce websites. The guys from OrangeMonkie have explained how to do this for all kinds of the websites.
Create Gif or MP4 file
Click on the Image Upload button at the bottom of the screen when opening your image in the Foldio360 application.
Click on the “Data export” and after a few seconds you will receive the archive that you need to transfer to your computer.
After opening the archive you will get ready-made .gif, .jpg and mp4 files. If you used a DSLR, then you would need other free online services to create GIF files.
When uploading your images on the website, you can add your .gif file to any of the available folders.
1. You need to upload your .gif file to the free hosting website, I recommend Giphy.
2. Copy the link to the image. At the end of the link “.gif” should be written.
3. Go to the Ebay website and when adding photos of your product, select the HTML editing mode.
4. Paste the code [<img src = "your reference to GIF">] where you should have a 360 image.
You just need to create an account on Etsy and upload your GIF.
In Instagram, you can only download MP4 files in order to view 360 product photos on your business page.
When you unload your images from the Foldio360 app, you should select "Instagram" instead of "Data export".
You can choose the kind of Instagram post – a story or feed.
If you need to apply a Lightroom filter, (but I'm sure it's not) just do it and upload a 360 product video to your account.
1. After uploading your image to SPINZAM, you should copy the iframe code using the Share button.
2. The Wordpress system supports this code uploading, so open the HTML editing mode.
3. Insert the iframe code where you need it.
As you can see, 360 photo retouching takes a lot of time. A professional photographer spends about 20 minutes on magazine photo editing of only 1 photo. Now you have at least 24 photos of the subject to edit, so, how much time you need to make a simple 360 photo retouching? 8 hours of your time you will spend on a similar photo retouch, a lot, isn't it? I'd better address product photo editing services to make it faster and economize my time on photo post production.
Hi there, I'm Ann Young - a photographer, photo retoucher and of course, journalist. Here on FixThePhoto blog you can find all of my reviews, photography and photo editing tips, pricing guides, and photography experiments.