A recent project found me shooting catalog shots of some unique and antique copper pots and pans. Sounds boring enough but in actuality, it was really interesting and challenging. Ceres Copper Cookware sells rare and hard to find pieces they find all over the planet. For the cognoscenti, these pieces are beautiful, rare, and full of history including easy to miss features like “Dovetail construction” and “planished surfaces”. Most were made in France or the U.K. in the 1800s.
The challenging part comes from the mirror like surface. Think about taking an image of a mirror and NOT capturing yourself in it, or not capturing a reflection of a wall or shelf in the background: not simple. Unfortunately for me, these copper pieces were polished to the 9s and were highly reflective. A few times we captured what looked initially to be a great image only to discover my reflection, with the camera, in the copper.
After an initial shoot, and decent, but not-good-enough results, I ended up building a giant custom “light tent” to surround the pieces with a background that would not distract.
The customer was extremely happy with the results, which is what matters to me, but I will no doubt try some different looks/lighting next time.