Luxury Watch photography – shooting the product


Whilst it’s true that nearly all of the images that we see these days have been manipulated using Photoshop, we strongly believe that post production should enhance what is already there rather than using it to make drastic changes.  Therefore, we always make sure that we use high end lighting techniques to get as much as possible right straight out of camera.


This approach means that we spend longer refining lighting setups whilst shooting our images rather than relying upon retouching to get the result we want.  It also means that products are more realistic as there are only minor changes made during retouching in photoshop.





Now that we have taken care to ensure that the product is looking as good as possible when shooting, it’s time to start retouching.



RAW image processing


We always shoot to create RAW files so that we capture as much information as possible.  The first stage of retouching is to make minor exposure and contrast adjustments to ensure that we have optimal images to continue retouching in Photoshop.  The adjusted RAW files are exported as 16bit .tif files ready to be retouched in Photoshop.



Retouching in Photoshop


The client requested that these luxury watch images as .png files with no background.  Therefore, the first task was to cutout the product from the background using the pen tool.  Once cutout, the dust was cleaned from the watch using the healing brush tool and the clone stamp tool.


Selective adjustments were made to both the watch face features and body and strap using curves layers and layer masks.


Take a look at the detailed retouching in this speed-edit video along with my explanation of the techniques being used:



You can watch the video on YouTube here and also subscribe to keep up to date with any future videos!


So there we have it… our full retouching workflow from RAW image to final image!




Final Image



Part 2 coming soon!


If you enjoyed this we will be publishing part 2 of this series soon.  This will show the full retouching of a second view of the same watch in similar detail.



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I hope that you’ve found this post interesting and helpful in understanding that retouching in product and advertising photographs does not have to distort reality. It can be used to make small and relatively subtle changes that highlight and refine a product.


I’d love to hear your comments or views on any of the topics covered above so feel free to enter them down below!