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Mastering Product Photography: Apparel and Clothing

In clothing and apparel e-commerce, mastering product photography is crucial to establishing an online presence and standing out from the competition. Having a great product description just isn’t enough. You need high-quality product images that replicate the in-store experience online shoppers demand, allowing them to view products from various angles and zoom all while staying in sharp focus to showcase every intricate detail of the product. In this guide, we’ll look at how to improve your apparel and clothing product photos with PhotoRobot hardware and software.

Mannequin in nightgown with lights in photo studio.
The Cube setup

Getting started: the PhotoRobot kit for Apparel and Clothing

With a wealth of online marketplaces for clothing and apparel, high-quality product photography is the norm for today’s digital consumers. The more your photos can replicate the hands-on, in-store shopping experience, the more likely you are to generate higher sales, build brand trust, and increase revenue.

To do this with clothing and apparel, you need perfectly lit product imagery, centered and viewable from numerous angles. It’s also important to have background removal tools and software for post-processing and editing to streamline uploading imagery to online marketplaces and advertising platforms, as well as distributors and retailers. 

The PhotoRobot apparel and clothing 360 & 3D photography kit is designed to do precisely this, helping photographers to capture consistent, high-quality product imagery with our CUBE ROBOT, Mannequin Torso and PhotoRobot editing software. These tools allow photographers to snap clothing and apparel photography and get the photos online and ready for publishing, all in under a minute. Read on to walk through a typical PhotoRobot photo shoot with the CUBE and Mannequin.

Setting the scene for apparel and clothing

Before any photo shoot, you need to first set the scene. For clothing and apparel, the scene will require the CUBE Robot set up for mannequin photography. Let’s walk through the process now.

Photo of quick-exchange mannequins and carrying case.

1 - Set up your mannequin and your CUBE robot.

This robot is a small box that rotates the mannequin and can be configured to capture your given angles. It is fairly light weight and can be easily transported to anywhere you need to set up a shoot.

Mannequin and Cube easily transported.

2 - Choose your lighting. 

Large softboxes or LED panels can cause loss of contrast and volume for the object. What is more, incorrectly set backlighting can cause a photograph to lose edge-clarity (so-called “light wrap”). PhotoRobot’s answer to this is using hard directional light and placing the mannequin further away from the background, which is impossible using “box solutions” with their limited space. PhotoRobot also uses velvet shields that allow us to apply more lighting to the background without affecting the clarity of the object.

Device rotating mannequin for photos.

3 - Set your camera.

It’s as simple as plugging your camera in! Just place your camera on the tripod, plug it in, and together with your Cube robot you will now be able to capture all of your desired angles.

Capturing the scene

After the product photo station is prepared, it’s time to capture images of the clothing and apparel. This consists of clothing the mannequin, choosing the desired angles and capturing all of your images in a single click thanks to the PhotoRobot software.

Image of female mannequin dressed in underwear.

1 - Clothe the mannequin.

And remember, you don’t have to worry about the pole being seen with PhotoRobot’s post-production and background removal features. All you need to do is fit the apparel you would like to shoot onto the mannequin. In larger studios, this is usually done by a stylist who assists the photographers, or, in this case the robot operators. PhotoRobot’s mannequin is equipped with a “quick coupler,” allowing the stylist to work outside of the scene on the next mannequin in line, while the robot operator can continue shooting without interruption.

Photo capture software user interface.

2 - Choose the desired angles.

You can use full-spin, some predefined positions, or both. This depends on the type of clothing you are shooting, and how you want to present it to your customers. Choose just a few shots, 360° spin - or both - as overall capturing time is very fast and post-processing fully automated!

User interface press "Capture".

3 - Capture the images in a single click.

Now that your mannequin, camera, and desired angles are all set, you can now start your photo shoot with just one click of the mouse. Press the play button, and PhotoRobot will do the rest.

Post-production: background removal

PhotoRobot makes it simple to not only automate the process of capturing your images but also to manage more crucial elements of your photo shoot, including background removal, cropping, color enhancements, white balance, and more.

With apparel and clothing, background removal can be complicated by the fact that you have a mannequin pole that is visible or overlapping with the clothing.

Our Chromakey feature will allow you to make the pole completely invisible in just a few clicks of your mouse. It really is that easy.

The importance of high-quality clothing and apparel product photography

In today’s visual world, the ecommerce landscape and success in the industry revolves around high-quality product content and customer confidence. This is especially true for selling clothing and apparel through online marketplaces, where shoppers have come to expect visually rich product imagery that comes as close as possible to replicating the in-store shopping experience.

The better your product images, the more sales you will ultimately generate. At PhotoRobot, we understand this, and we strive to make product photoshoots as easy, quick, and affordable as can possibly be. Our solutions are aimed at increasing throughput by making photographers’ and teams’ jobs less time-consuming, while also providing valuable tools for consistent and powerful product photography.

If you would like to learn more about how PhotoRobot can assist in the planning and realization of the optimal apparel and clothing photography studio for you, don’t hesitate to contact us today for a free consultation!