An automated photo studio to create animations of small art pieces

Animating 200 pieces of about ten different materials, assembled on a disc no larger than a watch dial: this is the challenge that photographer Eric Valdenaire took up for his client. The use of one of the latest PackshotCreator automated photo studios was a decisive factor in the success of these shots. They were then assembled into animations by the software, controlling the studio.

How to realize an animation with a PackshotCreator photo studio?

Rose Saneuil, the creator of miniature marquetry and high jewellery pieces, called on Eric Valdenaire’s talents for a first photographic session. The designer is satisfied and the photographer then proposes to animate her marquetry pieces. An animation is a succession of pictures created by a photo studio equipped with a turntable to make rotate the product. The studio, its lighting system and the camera are controlled via software. The user configures his own parameters by product type (shooting, degree of rotation, number of images to be photographed, lighting or file export). Profiles can be stored and reused for a similar object or typology. The entire shooting process, from product positioning to image file export, is therefore controlled and automated.

animated gif piece of artPiece of artwork GIF animation PackshotCreator

© Rose Saneuil

“It was impossible for me to make these animations in a traditional studio.”

A practical system when the products are complex to photograph: “The difficulty in shooting these miniature was to highlight the multiple materials (white mother-of-pearl, straw, stingray or parchment) that react differently to light. The format of the animation was then necessary, contrary to the fixed image, which reached its limits here. It was impossible for me to make this type of animation in a traditional studio. That’s why I decided to use PackshotCreator, as I already know their solutions for product photography, especially 360° photography.”, he says.

Product placement PackshotSpin Jewelery

“Creating pictures and animations with the studio and its software is easy.”

An automated 360° photo studio, designed for jewellery

Eric Valdenaire, used a 360° photo studio designed for jewelry and gemstones: the PackshotMacro DL. Used with the new PackshotSpin Jewelry system, it allows to suspend and hang the items to be animated and then control all the pictures from your computer screen. “I had no experience with this type of visual, and with the software I was able to calibrate the turntable from minus 20, to plus 20°, choose the number of images composing the animation and then create a fluid and pleasant to watch animation. Creating pictures and animations with the studio and its software is easy.”, explains Éric Valdenaire.

PackshotSpin Jewelry product photo studio

The PackshotMacro DL 360 mini photo studio with PackshotSpin Jewelry hanging 360 rotation system

Quickly operational to create product animations

Quickly operational, the art photographer began creating an animation for each of his client’s 12 pieces: six pairs of earrings and six miniature dials. He achieves them quickly, in only three afternoons, despite the complexity of these pieces. “The software allows you to save all settings from product positioning to file export and reapply them for a similar subject. Once this configuration is completed, the process becomes fully automated. The PackshotMacro DL studio is very effective for close-up photography.” he says.

Eric Valdenaire working with PackshotCreator

A custom lighting environment composed of 10 sources

Tailored lighting, increased creativity

This studio is equipped with a custom lighting environment, composed of 10 sources that can be fully modulated from the software interface. In addition, there is a double lighting with LEDs at 3000°K (cold temperature) and 5700°K (hot temperature). A configuration that permits to obtain an optimal colorimetric rendering on complex materials and all the audacities in terms of creativity: “The diffuse lighting present in the studio does not generates brilliance: I was able to play on the effects of brilliance that I wanted to bring to the animations by using the light spot mounted on a flexible arm. “, specifies Eric Valdenaire.

Automated photo studio software product photography

“When it comes to an animation made up of 70 photos, the time-saving is enormous!”

“Thanks to the engine my subjects didn’t oscillate”

The flexible PackshotSpin Jewelry perfectly suits for creating animations of small objects. It helps the photographer to adapt a nylon thread to suspend the miniature earrings and dials from above. The 1.8° stepper motor of the PackshotSpin Jewelery benefits from a unique technology. It works thanks to the principle of inertia. It regulates the speed of rotation with electric impulses until it reaches its cruising speed: “thanks to this engine, the suspended earrings did not oscillate, which guaranteed me quality and homogeneity in the production of animation.”, underlines Eric Valdenaire.

Image editing and export of accelerated files

Rose Saneuil needed several animation formats: MP4 video for her Instagram page, HTML5 animation with interactive features for her website and animated GIF (below), less heavy to use for her website and social networks.
“I also had to export the photos composing each animation in JPEG format to crop and edit them directly from the software interface. I had no problem doing all these manipulations because the tool is very ergonomic: it is possible to apply the retouching done on one image, to all the other images. When it comes to an animation made up of 70 photos, the time-saving is enormous! “, says Éric Valdenaire. Another time-saving feature for the photographer is the PackshotOneClick function, which allows you to export the same visual in several formats and simultaneously. Finally, the Sampling function allows you to extract image files from a video to create a 360° object animation in HTML format.

animated GIF art product 1animated GIF art piece

© Rose Saneuil

An asset and a real added value

Time-saving, a complete tailored system, holding and hanging accessories or even control of the entire creative process, through the software… This solution represented a real asset in terms of creativity and productivity for the product photographer. Her client, Rose Saneuil, exhibited her magnificent subjects at the Révélations exhibition, the international biennial event for fine crafts and creation. It was held at the Grand Palais in Paris from 23 to 26 May 2019. The visuals, created by photographer Eric Valdenaire with PackshotCreator, also had their moment of glory during the biennial. They were broadcast in loop in video format on a large screen alongside the physical parts. A real added value for his customer!

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