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Photigy Showcase #5: Best Photos From Photigy Community Photographers

Best Photos From Our Photigy Community and the Thoughts that Inspired Them 


December, 2014 – January, 2015 issue.


Every couple of months we are publishing images from our Forum and Facebook Community to show off a great work of our talents and so it could serve as inspiration to others.

Below are some great photos that were shared with us within the last couple of months. We asked each photographer to tell a short story behind the shot. How the image was created. What inspired them to create this shot.

The answers you find will not only surprise you, but we hope they inspire you as well.


Thank You to all who participated and provided insights. Our Community continues to grow and prosper, because of these like minded photographers that are willing to share their processes, insights, and their work. 

Alexandr Vlassyuk

Website: alexandrstudio.com

Location: Almaty, Kazakhstan

The client requested to take photos of the bottled water “Tassay” Kazahstan for the spring ads. At the meeting with the graphic designers several options were provided.

After the review they decided to with this angle of the bottle on a light blue background with splashes of water from the bottom of the bottle.

The complete BTS of creating this shot is published in our Free Courses and Lessons section under “Making of “Boot with “flying” shoelaces” – Product Photography Behind The Scene“.

Matias Antoniassi

Website: matantoniassi.com

Location:  Lyon, France

For this glasses, Tag Heuer asked me to make a shot with a dark ambiance “cinestyle” while keeping a “luxurious light” on each part of the glasses and especially the temples and the brushed finish of the endpieces . It was important to feel the texture of the leather and the gold wires along the temples.

In eyewear photography, all details are important. Just as much dust and speckles must be removed, the angle of the shot is very important if it’s not one of the most primordial thing in this kind of photography. Textures are a real priority too, like light reflections.

Retouching is a very precise work and in this case, having a medium format back (Hasselblad H3DII-39) and excellent lenses helps you a lot for it (to me, the most boring part).

Lighting is the funny part. I use generally from 1 to 3 lights and lots of little reflectors made of black and white cardboards (you can cut them following the shape of the temples for exemple, to bounce the light coming from above). Moving them only a few millimeters can completely change your light and affect shadows/reflections.

One of the main difficulty in their request was having a lot of depth of field while being very near the glasses (to get lot of definition) .
Actually, they wanted DOF from front to back… It’s impossible to achieve that without stacking photography. Even my HTS system (Tilt & Shift) wasn’t able to achieve that because of the multiple Scheimpflug axes (3 different axes) and only one axe could be recovered in this case.

So, the solution was to stack shots (or having an IQ280 and standing further from the object…).

My method is moving forward the camera. Another method is changing the focus but I don’t use it, I’m more accurate with the Novoflex focusing rack (Castel-Q). Every step (back and forth) can be reproduced thanks to the precise printed ruller if one shot wasn’t ok.

I use my camera tethered with Phocus (from Hasselblad) and that helps me to check the focus.

As I said, I shoot with Hasselblad digital MF, HC120 Macro Lens (incredible lens…), and Profoto lighting. It gives me the best quality for my work and my clients.

Suzanne Hambleton

Website: rightlightimages.com

Location: Sacramento, California

Hello, I’m primarily a food and beverage photographer in northern California. However my studio does not have a kitchen, so many of my food images have been more like food portraits.

I very much try and follow the work of Paulette Tavormina for inspiration. (paulettetavormina.com) In my city of Sacramento, we have a very lively food scene and active “farm to fork” movement. Which means primarily eating foods grown locally. I wanted to create and capture the locally grown foods.

The fruits in the image are all grown in northern California in the winter.

As a photographer, I have been challenged and inspired by Photigy, both online and the Photigy Studio Photography School. I’ve taken several classes and am a member of ProCorner. The Photigy community is so helpful.

The complete BTS of creating this shot is published in our Free Courses and Lessons section under “Making of “Winter Fruit Bowl” – Food Photography Behind The Scene“.

Aron Czapiewski

Website: aronczapiewski.com

Location: Guildford in Surrey,  UK

The complete BTS of creating this shot is published in our Free Courses and Lessons section under “Jewelry Photography Behind The Scene: How To Photograph a Necklace“.

Martin Halama

Website: photohalama.com

Location: Kralupy nad Vltavou, Czech Republic

The watch was borrowed from my friend. I liked the watch in a moment I saw it and I thought I must take a photo of it till it is new. After a while of testing I tried to decorate it on the large quartz crystal.

For lighting I used two flashes Fomei 200Ws through a translucent paper. I took photos with Nikon D7100 and lens Sigma 105 Marco EX. Exif: RAW; 1/160; F16; ISO 100.

Editing and retouching in Photoshop took about six hours and here you can see the result.

Giuseppe Baarh

Website: GB Photography

Location:  Lelystad, Holland

I started to take free lessons from photigy.com three months ago, soon i would join pro corner and participated with Pro Corner assignment #15.

I bought this bottle of “Cristina Aguilera” perfume and started to make one photo just for fun before making one for the assignment.

I included techniques i learned from the free lessons and got a nice picture. Of course it was nice but far from perfect, and got a lot of advise on how to shoot it properly.

I did the assignment, and again received some good feedback. And than i did, nothing….. I started to shoot other objects. But than i read this article on photigy.com from Patrick MĂ©vel titled ‘The best way to improve your photography skills, or why feedback from a community is so important‘ well, that made it very clear for me.

I started to shoot the “Cristina Aguilera” bottle again and again until I got this result.

It still needs some work but compare to the first shot it’s a huge improvement, and a good lesson for me – never to give up until its perfect, or close to perfect  :)


Location: Chicago, Illinois.

The inspiration for this photo was our desire to see if the Light Painting technique could be used to photograph the Jewelry, Pens, and watches our company sells. We wanted something unique an had some interesting depth to it.

Tools - Lighting - Post Production

There were actually 9 shots done total, each of about 2-4 seconds exposure each.  Each was done with either the LED flashlight or iPhone used as the light source.  Once I was satisfied I had enough shots giving me the desired approximate illumination I wanted, those shots were brought into Photoshop, and if necessary adjusted for light neutrality.
The four main images are shown below.  The remaining shots were smaller light details adding
to the overall effect.


Nikon D3330
Standard Kit Lens
Olight M10 Maverick Compact LED
Harold Ross Photography “Screw on” Diffuser
iPhone Photo Light and Photo Soft Box apps
Light controlled room


Using the Photoshop tool, “open images in Stack”. I brought in all 9 images, and I choose an image I could use base image, and the remaining layers set to lighten.

Turning off all but one layer at a time, first I would adjust that layer for alignment (in case of minor camera shifting between shots) then create a Black mask for that layer, then I could paint onto each layer mask the desired lighting and adjust that layer for intensity.

Using this technique I could control the lighting to a large degree.

Screen Shot 2014-12-17 at 2.53.41 AM

Rinat Karimov

Website: Rinat Karimov Photography

Location: Tashkent, Uzbekistan.

This shot was created for an outdoor advertisement for VitoOne store.

The angle was not selected by accident – I sought to avoid standard and ‘easy to read’ representation of an object. Also the fact that this shot was not advertisement for daytime lamp producer had to be taking into account. Therefore I couldn’t focus attention on the companies’ logo.
The color scheme of the sky blue background gives the picture contrast and readability.

The shooting process was one of the most interesting moments. In my opinion the object has a complex cylindrical shape. That suggested the choice of lighting schemes for the object.

For the shoot we used a simple sheet of white acrylic (120×240 cm). It is easily can be found in the construction store (this material is often used to for creating lighting signs).

I like to work with acrylic (or rather illuminate the subject with it), it is easy to fold in to a necessary for me shape (as in this case – the arc).

With it, I created the shape of the object and all that’s remained to do is to light it. Note, I only work with standard reflectors for lighting (Elinchrom Standard Reflector, 8.25 “). These two items produce excellent gradient.

Where with the beam of light I create desired for me glare acrylic does the rest.

I use 1200 Elinchrom RX. Background was created by lighting acrylic from the back with a blue gel filter. (Why I chose to use acrylic – it creates even illumination)

Bram Tolkamp

Website: flickr.com/photos/bramtolkamp

Location: Singapore

This photo was shot for a client who wanted the feeling of a wine cellar. This shot is actually a sketch. The name on the label didn’t have to be all in focus. It will be retouched to something else.

As it is going to be a banner on the website I felt the bottle should be lying. I wanted the bottle to be dusty to refer to the wine cellar. So I propped the bottle up and covered it with a mix of actual dust and flower.

To get an even spread I put it in a tea strainer and blew it over the set.

The set was lit with 2 speed lights. The snooted light was directly aimed at the bottle. The lower placed light was illuminating the screen on camera right only. A third gelled light was placed on the floor to give the background a nice glow.

All together it was tremendous fun to shoot. Getting the set equally covered with dust was a nice challenge.

It felt like pioneering as no-one had created dust in shot before. At least not anyone who responded on Photigy.

JoĂŁo Guerreiro

Website: joaoguerreirophotography.com

Location: Lima, PerĂș

The “Apetitosa” shot was made to present one of my product photography workshops.

The main idea behind it was to create a clean and fresh looking image, that would feature some of the techniques addressed at that particular workshop (lighting setups and modifiers, composite shots, high speed photography).

To prepare the bottle, first I used a matt lacquer spray (applying 2 layers), then the droplets were a mix of water and glycerine (about 50/50), and for the “ice” on top of the bottle, I added a mix of some water with sodium polyacrylate (you can find it inside regular diapers, thatÂŽs one of the benefits of having a small son!)

The lighting setup for the bottle is quite simple, on the right side I used a stripbox to create a harder reflection and on the other side I used a softbox through a diffuser to have a smooth gradient light, in order to create volume and shape on the subject. To bring in some highlight on the label I used a snoot.

For the background I placed a beauty dish with a diffuser to smooth transitions between light/dark blue.
Then, for the apple,

I worked with speedlights due to their short flash duration to freeze the action, one on the side of the subject and another one pointed to the background to have a back light and bring in the same color cast (as the bottle picture) to the water on the fish tank.

The post-production work for the final image was just to composite the two shots and making some levels/curves adjustments and some clean up.

If you want to keep in touch you can follow me on facebook or through my website!

Many thanks to Alex and all the Photigy community for inspiring me to keep working and improve everyday!

HĂ©ctor Carbuccia

Website: hectorcarbuccia.com

Location: Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic

My name is HĂ©ctor Carbuccia and I’m a commercial / fine-art photographer from the Dominican republic. My photo “Whisky on Fire” came as a cool idea for my portfolio, I was obviously inspired by the Photigy community and the desire to improve my image quality in product photography as I’m still learning step by step all the basic stuff.

Story: I had the empty bottle (from the Christmas parties) so I decided to use it with this project. I wanted to show the whisky as something powerful.

The image was done in various shots. I shot the fire first, then did various shots with a snoot in different positions to highlight different parts of the bottle.

If you are passionate about studio photography, open-minded and do not afraid to share your secrets and to contribute to our Photigy Facebook community, we invite you to join us. Your request will be accepted in few minutes!

On the Professional Photography Forum we explain and discuss most complicated shots. BTS and lighting setups, retouching tips and much more posted in this forum thread: Submit your shot for a review and critique.

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