Black-on-Black Product Photography Using Two Lights

In this video, Karl works with broncolor’s Urs Recher to demonstrate a simple rim lighting technique for cosmetic product photography.

Together, the pair demonstrate how to use a single backlight to create beautiful rim lighting around a black product on a black background. Using two of the simplest, and most affordable modifiers — softboxes — Karl and Urs clearly show the importance of each individual light, as well as reveal the key to achieving gradient lighting.

Topics covered in this class:

  • Black-on-black product photography
  • How to rim light products
  • Creating gradient lighting for product photography
  • Techniques for reducing flare
  • Using softboxes for product photography
  • How to photograph small products

Further product photography classes you may enjoy include:

If you have any questions about this class please post in the comment section below.


  1. Hi. did you tape two pieces of scrim paper together? If so, would that not show up in say a glass/wine bottle shot? or is this (if in fact you did tape or connect 2 pieces of scrim together) only be used for none reflective surfaces?

    1. Hi, This was Urs’s scrim and he had taped two sheets of diff together with selotape but i don’t recommend this as the join can show up in the product reflection.

  2. kenshi2008

    Easy to set up and learn something new if working in a studio. Thanks for the tips and suggestions for lighting.

  3. DavidMorgan

    That’s a great ‘bite-size’ chunk of education. Would be interesting, too, to see the effect of altering the distance between the scrim and the product, so I’ll give that a go myself. Really like your work with Urs.

  4. Hello Karl, happy new year.
    I was wondering if I use a frosted acrylic instead of the scrim, the results change?
    Regards and say hello to the team.

  5. Hi Karl. It looks like you tweked the lighting a bit to achieve fine tuning for the final image. What were the most relevant changes?

    1. Hi Victor, where have I tweaked the lighting or what can you see so that I can look at that an explain. I’m afraid this shoot was a while ago so.

    1. Hi, I’m not quite sure what you mean, we used a piece of black card with black velvet clipped behind the subject. It was clipped with a manfrotto clamp onto a manfrotto flex arm.

  6. Simple but nice

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