6 Things That Make a Great Bottle Shot
Krista shared an excellent post last week about 6.5 Easy Fixes for a Better Wine List Page.
In my opinion, the most important tip is easily the first one about using quality pictures. With that in mind, here’s a designer's take on what makes for an awesome bottle shot.
What makes a great bottle shot?
1. Physical Bottle Quality
Send your best bottles to get the best photos. Look for imperfections in the glass, cap or foil, and make sure the labels are applied straight. Any blemishes can be cleaned up by a professional in Photoshop, but keep in mind that post-production can get expensive.
2. Brightness, Contrast & Color
Proper color, contrast and brightness can make the difference between an ok and a great photo. Are colors realistic? Is the color contrast vibrant or does it look washed out? Are the highlights and shadows accurate? Does the color reflect the wine properly?
3. Avoiding Reflections
Your customers want to get to know you, but they don’t want to see you (or your photographer) in the bottle’s reflection.
4. Proper Lighting and Shadows
Lighting is important in photography, and seeing multiple lamps and bright spots reflecting in a bottle shot is not ideal.Photographers use an assortment of lights, lamps, shades, reflectors, and umbrellas to get lighting just right.
5. Remove Backgrounds & Use Photo Clipping
Some winery websites are in need of a photo clipping overhaul. Have somebody on your marketing team (or a pro) clip around the white box or background in the bottle shot, unless your site design has a white background.
6. Image Resolution
Use the largest resolution possible without compromising on the photo’s quality. Large photos look amazing on product detail pages, but ensure they’re optimized so the page loads quickly (Reduce image sizes using Photoshop, or a free program like Smushit). Avoid pixelation when resizing images. Start from the highest quality image and resize downward, never do the reverse.
Examples of Great Bottle Shots
There are many sites using exceptional bottle shots taken by a professional photographer. Here are few that we’d like to mention.
It’s important to have awesome looking bottle shots. You’ll make a good first impression, boost customer confidence, and support marketing efforts outside ecommerce, such as print collateral, advertising, and signage.
If you’d like to share some of the photos you’ve seen on wesbites, go ahead and share the link in the comments or share the photos on our Facebook page.
Nice pre-production tips. They detail what imperfections to look for when sending bottles for a great photo.
Thanks for sharing. James
El Jefe - Definitely some great shots! Thanks for letting us use Twisted Oak as an example.
In addition, having the label straight and centered (with no seam running through it), providing a pleasing glow that adds dimension to the wine, keeping the lighting from washing out important areas of the label, and using lighting and camera angle to bring out the detail and artistry of the label are a few other important steps in the process.
I have done thousands of bottle shots for hundreds of wineries... from the big names to the small family wineries... and experience has taught me that each wine has unique challenges and strengths. It's our job to make the wines communicate clearly to the consumer.
Thanks for getting people thinking and talking about great bottle shots! Mitch