Still life emerged as a distinct genre of painting in the sixteenth century. Today, it also has a place in photography, both as an artistic genre and a staple of advertising and product illustration.
More than any genre, tabletop still life allows you to control every aspect of an image. This challenge is an opportunity to practice exercising that control. You can use as much or as little equipment as you like, and take on whatever subject matter you’re drawn to - from the simple beauty of a bowl of fresh fruit to a complex allegorical arrangement of objects, or something entirely different. For further guidance and links, click on The brief in detail tab…
The expert’s winner, chosen by Andrew Scrivani, and the crowd’s favourite will each receive a portable Modahaus Tabletop Studio Pro TS400 worth $110 each!
It may seem simple, but creating an effective tabletop still life demands careful attention to detail, and often requires patience and planning.
First you’ll need to select your subject(s), and then consider your background: the backdrop could be plain, so as not to distract, but you may also want to play around with colour and texture to affect the atmosphere of your image. Consideration of lighting is key; you can take advantage of natural lighting, but plan your timing because the colour temperature and angle of the light will change throughout the day. For fuller control mimic studio conditions indoors with household lamps and pieces of white paper as reflectors, or more professional kit if you have it. Try different lighting setups and notice the changes in the image as a result - this is a good opportunity to experiment until you get an image you’re happy with. For more information about lighting tabletop still life, try these articles:
The expert’s winner, chosen by Andrew Scrivani, and the crowd’s favourite will each receive a portable Modahaus Tabletop Studio Pro TS400 worth $110 each! The TS400 is a unique portable, lightweight tabletop studio with six wipe clean, anti-static, food-safe polymer backdrops including translucent red, white and blue plus opaque white, mid gray and jet black. Set up in seconds and shoot professional product and still life subjects in any location.
Every photo submitted will be available for the crowd to rate once the submissions period has ended. You can see all the images uploaded to a contest, but will need to rate them to see how they’re ranked once the rating period begins.
Some contests on Photocrowd also have a judge. After the submission period closes the judge chooses their favourite images and writes some image reviews. The crowd and judge results will be announced on the same day.
For a more detailed explanation of how rating works, see our FAQs