Retail and commerce companies in Yorkshire use pack shot photography extensively to promote their products and services, both online and in printed literature. The term has become synonymous with commercial photography for advertisers.
A pack shot, or packshot, is a still or animated photographed image, usually including labeling and packaging, which is used to advertise a product. Pack shot photography is a lucrative way to increase revenue for both the merchandiser and the commercial photographer. Done with flair, it will promote a product's reputation, stimulate sales and trigger recognition of the item both on and off the shelf. It also gives the customer important details about the product, especially if 360 degree pack shot photography is used.
Pack shot photography requires a high degree of trust between the photographer and their client. In the past, forged and leaked packshots have led to damaged reputations and court cases. Of all the forms of commercial photography there are, packshots probably require the highest level of security and confidentiality.
Types of packshot photography
A packshot can be as simple as a photograph of the product on a white background, or as elaborate as a short, stop-motion animated movie. Commercial photography is almost entirely digital these days, which has opened up realms of possibilities, with a wealth of professional software available to photographers.
For example, let's look at the centre of Leeds. Packshot photography can be seen wherever you look, advertising foodstuffs, cleaning products, mobile phones, jewellery, toys, motor vehicles and more.
Packshot photography isn't limited to brochures, posters and magazines. As well as company websites, packshot images can be seen on t-shirts, ties, and sides of buses. Once the packshot has been digitally rendered, it can be used on anything that will take a printed or projected image.
Packshot photography for websites
Website packshots are always taken on a white background. They are purchased as "packs" of 20 or more images, in 2 or more sizes. Once complete, the pack is delivered to the customer in either file format or via their content management system. Some commercial photography companies offer a full media service, while others just supply the shots, leaving the customer to do the post-production work themselves.
360° packshots are a form of online commercial photography allowing the customer to view the item from all angles - as they would in a store. Used on objects of all sizes, it can incorporate zooming techniques and other innovations. Another option is stop motion animation photography, which is widely used on products with moving parts, such as kitchen gadgets and motor cars.
High resolution pack shot photography
Commercial photography is still most often associated with printed media. Professional photographers today can offer digitally enhanced, high resolution packshots for catalogues, brochures and promotional leaflets, as well as for newspapers and magazines.
Packshot photography for print publications usually involves a clipping path. Produced using professional digital software, the photographer will shoot onto a plain white or coloured backdrop and then "snip" round the image, allowing it to be used on an infinite number of backgrounds. The same image can therefore be used on both the company's print literature and its website.