If you’ve got an e-commerce store and you’re looking to do your own product photography, chances are you don’t have the essential equipment a professional product photographer would have.
The good news is that you can still get pretty good product photos with your iPhone/Android device, and there are some helpful apps to enhance your images, streamline the editing process, and even help post to social media.
The three best iPhone apps for product photography are Canva, NOMO, and VSCO for the following reasons:
- Canva: a good choice for beginners and a handy graphic design tool.
- NOMO: an app that gives product photos the look of professional film photoshoots.
- VSCO: an excellent editing app with many filter options.
The success of your product is frequently tied to the quality of your images since that is what online shoppers will use to make their purchasing decisions. So let’s discover more about the apps that can help you make your product photos stand out from the rest.
What Are the 3 Best iPhone Apps for Product Photography?
Many iPhone apps can help finesse product photography, but three are frequently named the best among them.
Canva has made itself known for its ease of access and its templates that help make your product photos ready for social media with no hassle. NOMO has surged through the pack as a strong contender with its wealth of camera options that emulate the look of professional photoshoots. VSCO has long been a leading photo editing choice for iPhones because it allows for in-depth customizing.
These three apps offer beginner product photographers plenty of options for what they need, from shooting to posting on social media, without the need for professional equipment.
Here are a few reasons why you might choose one over the other:
Pick Canva If You Need a Well-Rounded Tool
Canva is an Australian graphic design platform that has a popular iPhone app. Canva is known for its wealth of templates and the way it facilitates creating social-media-ready posts that stand out for their quality.
The app is also useful for creating presentations, posters, and other graphic content that showcases your product photography, such as infographics.
Canva offers free access to most of its features, but there is also the option of a subscription for those looking for further choices. The pro option gives unlimited access to Canva’s full library of templates while streamlining the time spent on some of its features. It also provides more options to heighten the personal brand of your listing.
Canva is known to be a great choice for beginners, especially for those without a background in graphic design. The app is easy to use and, even on its free tier, it allows you to create results that will look highly polished and professional.
You can then use these results on your portfolio, your website, or your blog, as well as other social media accounts. Your product photography will stand out for its gloss and presentation without the need for studying graphic design or hiring extra help.
Canva Features that Will Enhance Product Photography
The Canva app has numerous features that can enhance the look of your product photography, and these are some of the most popular ones:
- Adjustment options: when you import your product photos into Canva’s gallery, you can access plenty of editing options. You can crop and flip the image, and you can adjust the brightness, contrast, saturation, blur, tint, and vignette level. You can also reposition the image and select its transparency.
- Filters: after you are finished adjusting your image, you can customize it with filters like Greyscale, Drama, Rosie, Retro, Whimsical, Nordic, Selfie, Afterglow, Summer, Festive, and Epic. These can enhance the look of your product photography to fit your brand and style.
- Fonts: Canva Pro gives you unlimited access to the platform’s entire font gallery, but even in its free version, there are more than enough fonts to cover all your text needs. You can add headings, subheadings, and body text to your product photos, and you can also make use of the numerous ready-made text options that you can place in your post with no effort.
- Templates: no matter what you’re looking to do with your product photos, you’ll find templates for it in Canva’s extensive library. You can customize each element of these templates, which give you ready-to-post product photography with only a few taps. Some of the choices at your disposal are templates for Instagram posts of every type, from the holidays to the inspirational. There are also templates for website banners and announcements, as well as blog headers.
- Elements: you can personalize your product photography posts even further by adding features like stickers, gradients, frames, charts, and grids. There are themed collections of elements like zodiac symbols, flowers, animals, hearts, personalities, seasons, travel accessories, and food items. These options can add a lot of character with little effort.
Capture the Feeling of Film Photoshoots with NOMO
NOMO is a point-and-shoot iPhone app created by Blink Academy, a company based in Beijing. Its minimalistic interface emulates the analog look of classic cameras like the Leica I, the Leica Minilux, the Leica M6, the Hasselblad 503CW, the Agfa disposable camera, the Lomo Instant Automat, the Fujifilm Instax Mini 25, and the Contax T3.
NOMO also emulates the look of classic films like the Fujifilm Pro, the Ilford HP5, the Kodak Ektachrome E100VS reverse, the Kodak Gold, the Fujifilm Natura 1600, the Fuji Superia, and the Kodak Tri-X 400TX, among others.
This emulation of classic film provides a highly professional and polished look to product photography that looks refined and akin to the best film photoshoots of yesteryear. The ease of access that NOMO gives to photographers is unparalleled, given that there is no longer a need to carry anything other than an iPhone to take the kind of photos one would have had to invest a great deal in terms of film and cameras.
NOMO has an annual membership that gives full access to its over forty cameras, as well as the ongoing camera updates and any new additions. The free version of the app includes the default INS W, which emulates the Fujifilm Instamax Mini 25, and the TOY K, which emulates Kodak’s disposable cameras.
You can take product photographs directly from the NOMO app with your preferred camera and film style, but you can also import your shots into the gallery and add the desired look after the fact.
When you take a photograph with NOMO, the app will react like an analog 35mm film camera and add grain, curves, and dust presets at random if you so choose.
The Most Pleasing NOMO Camera Styles for Product Photography
The NOMO iPhone app includes over forty cameras that emulate different styles. When it comes to product photography, some of these styles can enhance the look of your photos even better:
- 135 GR: this camera style emulates the Ricoh GR21 combined with the look of the Kodak Tri-X 400TX films. This style grants a high degree of contrast on black and white that brings to mind the work of masters of photography. This can significantly highlight the quality of your product photos while adding a glossy grainy effect.
- 135 M: this style emulates the look of Kodak film used on the Olympus mju-ii with a 35mm lens. The mju-ii is known as one of the most influential classics of modernity, having been released in 1998. This camera is also on the pricier side for the high quality of its images. NOMO recreates this quality in the app.
- 135 SP: the inspiration for this camera style comes from the Olympus 35 SP used with Kodak Gold film. This style provides high sharpness and beautiful colors for product photography. The Kodak Gold film is known for its warmth and the way it enhances yellows and blues, and the Olympus 35 SP is known for being one of Ansel Adams’ favorites.
- EATS: this camera style offers the option of three different films with three different tones. This is a perfect style for product photography that involves food and beverages, as the warm tones of its three films enhance the subjects’ qualities.
- 135 M6: the inspiration behind this style is the Leica M6 with Kodak film. The M6 is also held in high esteem for its quality. NOMO recreates this quality and provides lovely tones and soft grain.
Tend to Every Detail with VSCO
VSCO has been a favored iPhone app for photo editing since it came out in 2011. It is known for providing a creative space that provides plenty of options for adjusting photos suitable for beginners.
VSCO also offers numerous filters and presets that emulate popular photography styles that can enhance the look of your product photography.
You can take photos through its easy-to-use interface, and you can adjust them, or pictures you’ve imported, with the comprehensive editing options. VSCO gives you the option of adjusting exposure, contrast, clarity, saturation, tone, white balance, vignette, grain, borders, and blur, among others.
You can even add text directly to your product photos. You can also sharpen and crop your images.
VSCO comes in two tiers: basic and membership. The basic level is free and offers several features:
- Ten presets: these are limited to the basic VSCO original presets.
- Photo editing: you will have access to the basic editing tools, but these cover enough ground to personalize your product photography to your specifications.
- VSCO journals: the journals are your portfolio within the app and allow you to create a series.
The membership level is charged annually and offers more in-depth options:
- 200+ presets: these cover everything from film emulation to landscapes and portraits, from color to black and white. VSCO has plenty of preset collections like the Chromatic, the Legacy, the Minimalist, the Contemporary, the Vibrant, the Mellow Fade, the Moody Underexposed, the New Modern Lights, and many more.
- Full editing features: you will have access to photo and video editing options, including the membership-only montage, HSL, and borders.
- Weekly challenges: community challenges are a VSCO staple that can get exposure for the photos involved.
The Best VSCO Filters for Product Photography
With over 200 filters offered as presets in VSCO, it can be hard to narrow down which are the best for product photography, mainly because they can all be customized. Here are some of the most popular choices:
- C1: this free filter is great for product photography as it adds a beautiful pastel tone. Saturation and brightness are enhanced, as are pink highlights.
- M5: this filter reduces saturation to infuse the image with a warm retro tone. This vintage hue can have a very positive aesthetic effect on your lifestyle product photos.
- A4: part of the Aesthetic Collection, this filter emulates analog photography in its subtle tones and soft light. This is a great preset for product photos, especially for those involving food.
- P5: this is an atmospheric choice for a filter that adds grain, scratches, dust, and reduces brightness.
- F2: this preset emulates the underexposed look of classic film shots by infusing the images with muted blue tones. This creates an appealing visual effect suitable for advertising.
- G3: this preset creates a lot of visually vibrant tones and sharpens the colors.
- S2: this filter gives a crisp look to images by enhancing the brightness and sharpness for a clean effect.
- B1: if you are looking for a black and white VSCO preset for your product photos, this is one of the most popular choices. The B1 is inspired by vintage black and white photography with its soft contrast and subtle play of lights and shadows. This look can add much appeal to the look and texture of your product.
- AV4: this preset replicates the classic look of the Agfa Vista 400 film by enhancing natural highlights and natural shadows.
Using Your iPhone for Product Photography
Of course, using these iPhone apps and filters will only get you so far. You are still going to need to follow best practices for product photography, understand lighting, and get correctly exposed images/color balance before these filters will do you any good.
iPhones can now take photos that look the almost as good as any professional camera, whether analog or digital, in a more streamlined way. With each new generation of iPhone, its cameras get more powerful.
The latest iPhone models are particularly well suited for product photography because of their high visual quality. With only a few extra additions, there is barely any perceptible difference between product photos taken with an iPhone and ones taken with the classic camera powerhouses.
There are now several lenses to choose from that you can add to the iPhone cameras, from tele lenses to wide-angle ones. You can also add tripods to ensure the quality of your product photos are as sharp as they can be.
If you’re looking to cover all your bases when it comes to getting the highest quality product photography, you can also look at mobile lights to help with all manner of lighting conditions.
Tips on Making the Best of Your iPhone Product Photography
The art of product photography continues to rise and has become essential in the world of e-commerce, and even in the world of influencers and social media moguls. There are several things you can keep in mind to ensure the success of your photos, especially if you take them on your iPhone:
- Accessorize: there is a long list of tools that can assist you with your iPhone photography, from lenses to tripods to apps. Make sure you use all the instruments at your disposal to create the look you’re seeking.
- Create your workspace: you can easily mimic the environment of photography sets with just your iPhone and the tools you add to it. When you are photographing products, choosing surfaces and backgrounds can significantly add to your images’ quality. Creating a contained environment for your session also allows you to control the lighting.
- Keep an eye on composition: angles and perspective are essential to product photography and can be instrumental in the visual impact of the final result. Follow best practices, like the rule of thirds, leading lines, foreground elements, and avoid tangents.
- Limit the use of on camera flash: when you take a photograph with the iPhone flash on, the light can drastically ruin the color balance and make your image appear flat. It’s recommended to use other tools to control the photo’s lighting, especially if you’re seeking to highlight a product’s qualities.
- Use the highest quality available: when choosing the app you’ll use to take the product photos, make sure you select the highest quality before the shoot. Some apps will offer the option of shooting in RAW formats, like traditional cameras. This format is the most recommended.
Taking product photographs with your iPhone can now be both a personal and professional endeavor. Numerous apps can assist with your photo shoot, but the best three detailed here are Canva, Nomo, and VSCO, all of which can enhance your experience in different ways by streamlining the process of shooting, editing, and sharing.
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