KnitLit Writes
KnitLit Books
KnitLit Contributors
KnitLit News & Events
KnitLit Knits
KnitLit Shares
KnitLit Links
KnitLit List
Contact Us

How to photograph clothing and fabrics

Whether it's something to do manually or luxury silk - we are surrounded by tissue. Today we look at technology to help them take pictures. Your friends, engaged in needlework, you will adore, and if you do good to receive such photos for you can find and work in a company engaged in the production of clothing. Let's look at how to take pictures of tissue.

'll Deal with equipment

If you have a fully equipped studio, there is everything to take good pictures, but, in fact, in order to get started, you need basic equipment. To shoot camera I use Nikon D700 (full-length digital SLR). Together with lenses with focal lengths of 50 mm and 24 mm, I have the opportunity to take good pictures of individual parts and the whole garment.

As for lighting, it is possible to start the shoot using the camera's flash with manual control, but this method works only when shooting in a suitable environment. In my home studio three white walls and white ceiling. If your house has a similar room, it will solve many of your problems. With the right lighting and white room becomes a huge tent light with uniform lighting.

When shooting on the road when there is no suitable premises, I use two flashes on stands with umbrellas. It seems that now the umbrellas are not so popular among photographers. Although soft boxes allow much better control the light, I found that if you want a soft light, and you have a modest budget, the umbrellas will be the best solution.

You can buy a 60-inch umbrella for less than $ 50. For the same money you get a softbox only 36 inches. If we talk about the larger size, the price difference is even greater. Oktoboks diameter of about 2 meters will cost more than $ 400, while at the same diameter umbrella will leave about $ 100.

manifest texture

The most important thing when shooting fabric - work correctly with texture. Whatever type of fabric you are not photographed, the problem is reduced to either mitigate or to emphasizing texture. Tie consists of thousands of woven threads, but it should look smooth and shiny. For sweaters can also be characterized by a complex knitted pattern that you want to show a favorable light.

Regardless of the task (to soften or emphasize the texture of the fabric) you use the same technology: the correct selection of the direction of the light. I hope that this article will help you understand how to relate to each other and light texture.

side Lights

I usually use a flash for several reasons. Firstly, most of all, I am in my white room, so the light reflection from the walls fills deep shade. Secondly, and more importantly, in order to show the texture, light should be directed.

Textures occur through a combination of shadows and light elements, which makes the photo volume. Look at the texture of something simple, such as your palm. When the shadows do not make the folds of her, it looks smooth. If you want to accentuate the texture on the fabric, you need to use a powerful directional side lighting. If you imagine that your fabric - it is a large flat piece of land, you will need to give the sliding sun light, as at sunset.

Remember that the side light is relative. The illustration shows what can be considered side lighting for the thing that is on the table. If your thing is hanging or placed on the back of the chair, you will need to change the position respectively of the light source, the light shines at an acute angle to the surface of the fabric or article.

direct lighting

Direct lighting - this is the opposite side. Instead of taking pictures at sunset, you're shooting at noon. Light, although it remains soft, falls directly on the fabric. This makes the texture less noticeable and helps to hide the flaws.

You will be surprised how often you do not want to emphasize the texture of the fabric. Again, the light source is positioned relative to the things that you'll be photographing. In the case of the things that are on the table, the light will be located on. If things are arranged vertically, the light will be sent directly to them from the camera.

Now let's look at some typical examples of tissues with which you may have to work.


On the previous photo, I gave an example image Knitwear and direct lighting options. For the majority of knitwear texture is the most important element. You will most likely want to emphasize it. The easiest way in such cases to use side lighting.

Recently I was given the assignment to photograph a knitted hat. Large horizontal waves were the most characteristic element of its texture. In order to get side lighting for these horizontal waves, it was necessary to place the light source from the top, just above the cap. If I put a light source on the left or right, the waves would not have received such expressive in the photo.

depth of field

I would like to briefly mention the depth of field. When you are photographing things like this for another site or just for fun, use the depth of field that you want. However, if you are doing a job for a magazine or a company, you will be waited on sharp pictures all over the field.

In the case of a photo of the cap, I actually worked in a macro. Creation of Images at such a short distance means that the depth of field is small. So I had to make sure I closed the aperture enough to the edge of the cap were also in focus.

Representatives of the fashion industry obsessed with sharp edges, because they often have to cut things out of the image photographed. Due to the fact that the object is cut, they are able to add a text or another image. Objects with blurred edges simply impossible to cut well.

smooth silk

The following picture are five silk ties. In my opinion, silk stuff is almost the exact opposite of knitted things. Despite the large visible fibers, silk has a smooth, highly reflective surface light.

When dealing with either a reflective surface or can deal with the reflection or use it. For your picture I set the camera so to catch it.

Remember the mantra "angle of incidence equals the angle of reflection." This means that I need to install the light at the same angle to the object at which I set the camera. Imagine that your flash fires a tennis ball instead of light. You want to set your camera so to catch the ball after it bounced from the object you are photographing.

When you look at this picture, you really see how shiny fabric from which sewn ties. Becomes less obvious what's going on with the texture of the fabric. Setting the flash and the camera almost directly above your subject, I use direct lighting. So I'm doing and disadvantages so that it looks more flat.

In this photo you can see how direct lighting and side lighting effect on what looks like fabric.

white Balance

A little on the white balance. When you photograph someone's product, it is important to make the color rendition was right. Nobody wants to in the catalog or advertisement was posted photo of a yellow dress, and actually in the store this dress was orange.

In order to be sure that the white balance on your photos perfect, put it in a frame something pure white. So you get a reference to help you when working with a photo editor, Photoshop or Lightroom.

What color is the fabric?

Another important point is to determine the color temperature of your light flashes Kelvin with different modifiers. I know that with my silver reflective umbrellas my flash provides light temperature equal to 5600 K. Therefore, I do not need to calculate this parameter every time I come to film. The temperature of your flash light can differ by 100 K and 200 K.

wrinkled jeans

Let's look at some jeans. When shooting some types of clothing can be difficult to understand whether to hide the texture of fabric or emphasize it. Sometimes it's better to take a picture in two ways.

These photos were taken in jeans crazy day of shooting things for the catalog. I do not always have time for you to rest easy that really there to talk about the adjustment of the light through the photos. So I worked with the flash mounted on my camera. What can I say? Often be a professional means being fast. I also knew that the post-processing of all the photos will be engaged in a professional retoucher.

These two pictures demonstrate how the illumination angle affects the texture. Jeans hanging on the wall in front of me. To create a picture on the left, I reflected the light from the flash off the ceiling to get a side light, similar to that used to create pictures of the knitted cap (just a light went on, and not to the left or right). To create a picture on the right, I have reflected the flash light from the wall, which was behind me and got the direct lighting.

Left side lighting, direct lighting on the right.

Which photo do you like? I think I prefer the more "crumpled" look for this particular type of jeans. However, an image with a smoothing hiding texture lighting is also quite possible to use.

Your photos of different tissues

If you decide to look for, you will find plenty of opportunities in this field of photography. From vintage and hand-sewn garments, which are to be sold at auctions like eBay, to things for elite catalogs. All these clothes is necessary for someone to take a picture.

It all boils down to the texture and the quality of shooting. When you have to master the use of technology side lighting and direct lighting when photographing fabric, you'll be on your way to creating a great portfolio. Once you show people pictures that accurately convey the color of clothing, it is very likely that you will pay attention to serious customers.



KnitLit Writes | KnitLit Books | KnitLit Contributors | KnitLit News & Events | KnitLit Knits | KnitLit Shares | KnitLit Links | Contact Us | Home


KnitLit the Third: We Spin More Yarns
By Linda Roghaar, Molly Wolf
Our Price: $11.20

KnitLit Too: Stories from Sheep to Shawl...and More Writing About Knitting
By Linda Roghaar, Molly Wolf
ISBN: 1400051495
Our Price: $11.20

Knitlit: Sweaters and Their Stories...and Other Writing About Knitting
By Linda Roghaar, Molly Wolf (Editor)
ISBN: 0609808249
Our Price: $10.40



Web Site Design and Web Site Hosting by Dot.Inc Solutions
Copyright © 2005 KnitLit, All Rights Reserved