The Light Box – Dildo Pics 101

When I asked our twitter followers if they’d be interested in how we do our dildo photography I got more of a positive response than I was expecting. I also didn’t expect to be agonizing over what the first step would be. Most of our photographs are moody and combine many elements. It would be hard to talk about one element without talking about the complementary elements. So I finally settled on talking about light box photography as it removes a ton of variables and can be explained without having to dive too deeply into the exposure triangle.

Light box photography is a way to capture an accurate representation of a small to medium sized object in a space efficient manner and is usually preferred for images meant for e-commerce. Product photography that incorporates mood and story is more complicated, artistic, and more expensive. Furthermore light boxes themselves, even on the expensive end, are far less expensive than even the most basic DSLR or mirrorless camera body. That last point is relevant because a good light box can significantly bridge the performance gap of cameras and phones.

Let’s look at an example.

This is Orochi from Bad Dragon. I’ve put it in our Fotodiox lightbox and cranked the lumens to 11. Which one is the DSLR? Which one is the cell phone? Which piece of gear is newer than the other?

If you were not immediately able to tell the difference, if it took you anything more than a snap decision, congratulations, you’ve made the case for the light box. (By the way the photo on the left is the DSLR and it is 2 years newer than the cell phone camera used for the picture on the right).

Now, these shots are quick and dirty. The perspective is off in both, I didn’t quite nail the focus in either, and these aren’t shots I’d send off with a bill—you can find many of those on our twitter feed. The point I wanted to illustrate is that the light box can greatly equalize factors such as exposure and detail, even in relatively old under-powered cameras. There are cellphones out there now that could probably trounce my DSLR and its Exspeed 4 sensor in this situation, the iPhone 11 comes to mind. Post also has to be considered, as with some small amount of work I could have normalized the colors and background exposure between both photos. I dare say at that point it would take several moments for me to pick out which one came from what camera and that’s before considering what size these images would actually end up at on an e-commerce page.

With a good light box, I don’t have to be too concerned about depth of field to blur out the background or differences in native light sensitivity, normally two gigantic advantages for interchangeable lens cameras. That Orochi is mere inches from the back of the light box, a foot at most, and the camera on my phone could normally never achieve significant background separation with that little room. Yet, here we are. It is also very space effecient. This particular light box setup needs about 10 square feet.

But I think, all those reasons aside, a decent light box helps newbies out with something that they tend to have the most trouble with. Decent exposure. Most people aren’t aware just how dim their house lights really are. Your eyes are incredible, and the typical healthy eyeball can pick out the light from a candle 1 mile away on a dark night. You are just simply used to lighting conditions that leave camera sensors grainy with noise as they desperately try to force more sensitivity to light. If you want to see a quick example of this yourself just get into some natural sunlight, set your camera (even your phone camera) to a manual ISO that looks good, then walk indoors and take the same shot.

Next installment we’re going to be talking about a subject that leaves most phone cameras crying. Depth of Field.

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s