Yesterday I did a commercial shoot for an upstart nutriceutical/bioceutical company in Scottsdale. The scientist behind the products, Arnold Takemoto, created a line of products that fight cancer, dementia, auto-immune diseases, Parkinson's, MS, and dozens of others. When I got to his office yesterday morning, I immediately got the impression that he is a very intelligent man, because I was lost the moment he began describing what we would be photographing in his lab!


      The actual photography was straight-forward - product photography of each jar and bottle in the product line, followed by what he called 'protocols' which were set a set of jars and bottles assembled to fight something specific, like Alzheimers, for instance. Following the individual bottle images, and
 the shots of each protocol, we did some shots geared more to print/web marketing, using the real foundational products, and the breakthrough products he developed.

      The shoot lasted about 5 hours, it wasn't difficult, though a little tedious to be sure. I kept the camera on the tripod, and the lighting the same from most of the shots, just switching the product. The ad agency that will be spear-heading the promotions asked for a 'clinical look' to the products, so I shot on white seamless for the individual shots, and added some props I borrowed from Mr. Takemoto for the marketing images, like a chalice, and some glass jars. Shooting everything on white, clear water in the jar wasn't very cool, so I added a few drops of orange soda to get a little tint.

      The only real challenge to this shoot was glare. The bottles were a very shiny plastic or glass, and some were wrapped in a clear platic seal.... so I had to get creative to eliminate all the specular highlights. What I did was just triple-diffuse the light. I was using my norman packs for lighting, and over each head I placed a diffusing sock, kind of like a shower cap. The lights were pointed away from the product, and I used shoot-through umbrellas (the white translucent ones) to bounce the light back towards the product. When you bounce light off a shoot through umbrella, you lose a lot of that light, so the light that does bounce is very soft and well spread. The already twice-diffused light coming from the umrella then had to hit the products which were in a shooting tent, for the third diffuser. Shooting tents are those little translucent white boxes made for product photography, the shooting tent is what really made the "clinical look" work, because it created a fantastic little shooting atmosphere with diffused light hitting the product from every angle.

      I'm looking forward to seeing the print ads/brochures in a couple months, I'll post the tearsheets when I get them.


  1. Do you use any of these products?

  2. No, I don't honestly. I shot over 90 different products though, and there were quite a few I was kind of interested in. After working with the creator and the marketing dept behind them, they sound pretty amazing.


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