Still Life Photography: 7 Tips and Steps

Shooting still life doesn’t mean the images have to be dull. You can add life and a sense of whimsy to your still lifes with a little creativity. Once again, COOPH delivers the creative goods in this video about shooting awesome still life photography with a few household items and some imagination:

1. Plan Your Concept

Sketch what you’re visualizing before you start. This is a great way to plan your concept. Then you can position everything perfectly when setting up.

2. Build Simple Setups

Find material, like solid color bed sheets, you have at home to create plain backdrops. Or buy inexpensive materials, like plain white acrylic sheeting. Use available light; so if you can, try to shoot near a window with lots of natural light coming in.

simple photography backdrop

3. Play with Light

Use whatever lighting sources you have available. For example, you can use a desk lamp to light your subject from behind or below.

still life lighting tips

4. Shoot Reflections

Photograph against a black tile or shiny acrylic sheet—anything with a reflective surface.

capturing reflections photography

5. Think Abstract

Get creative here! Think outside the box. Anything goes, it’s just a matter of imagination.

“Make the ordinary extraordinary.”

abstract still life photo

6. Enhance Your Props

Make your props come alive. If you’re shooting a beverage, spray the glass or bottle with water to give it a cool, refreshing feeling. Or add steam by simply setting a heated kettle next to the frame.

enhance props still life photography

7. Capture a Message

Use props, draw pictures, find ways to capture a message or tell a story.

photograph message

Do you have any fun, creative ways to shoot still life? Share your ideas and tricks below. Inspire others!

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