The simple solution for most businesses today will be to get the company camera, normally a point and click, and take some pictures themselves, but if that product is exceptionally small or detailed they may run into difficulties and need the services of a professional photographer.
Generally referred to as macro or ultra close-up photography, it’s an area of expertise I learned in my first job as a professional photographer, where I spent many hours photographing small pathology specimens.
With the introduction of digital cameras, interest in this type of photography has been stimulated by the fact that virtually every point and click camera today seems to boast a macro facility, however, the majority will never truly deliver macro quality images.
In an effort to provide every camera owner with the ability to take good close-up pictures simply and automatically, the acceptance of visual distortions and the loss of exposure control are an accepted compromise.
Strictly speaking, most of these cameras never achieve macro ratios and should really only be classified as close-up, with many others relying on supplementary magnifying lens on the front of the camera to bring the image to focus.
I began producing macro images using conventional large format cameras with a black cloth over my head, working on 5 x 4 inch cut film or in some more specialist applications half plate glass plates, very early on in my career as a medical photographer.
Using this knowledge and experience I have taken the techniques used in conventional analogue photography and use macro configured lenses with extension tubes and bellows to produce high quality images with digital technology.
The biggest challenge in macro photography is getting sufficient light onto the subject to enable the smallest possible aperture size to ensure good depth of field, since the greater the magnification the shallower the plain of focus and because the camera lens is so much further from the sensor chip in the camera body it needs even more light.
If keeping the whole image in focus is important multiple exposures can be made which can be ‘stacked’, within a digital editing programme and subsequently flattened into a sharp image.
The other major challenge to good pictures is dirt and dust, because you are working at magnification every hair, dust particle or scratch is emphasised so the cleanest possible environment is needed.