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I’m expanding my product portfolio over the next few days, experimenting with gradient backgrounds and lighting. I needed to add some electronic component shots as well as black-on-black.

© Donald J. Fadel, Jr. |

The above image is the video board from a late 2009 27″ iMac. I had to replace mine and kept it around long enough to serve as a subject for the shoot. The challenge – and what I wanted to show ability in – was to shoot a subject with both a highly reflective surface and a matt one as well. The aluminum foil over the heat sink and the detail of the logic board I thought offered the contrast in subject that I was looking for.

© Donald J. Fadel, Jr. |

This second image is of a panning base (used to create panoramic images). Black-on-black (or white-on-white) is a very interesting challenge. You know the subject is black, even though in reality most of it presented is a shade of gray (if it were all black then you wouldn’t be able to see it against the acrylic it is lying on). Instead, there are visual hints that the subject is indeed black (though again gray in the image). Visual tricks are what makes photography fun!

The slight background gradient (linear as opposed to circular in the above image) helps provide separation and adds to interest.

I’ve mentioned before that there is a certain Zen aspect to shooting still life and product. Time alone in the studio with the music, equipment, and subject is time well spent honing technique. And just enjoying the moment.

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