Photographing Wrapped and Packaged Food

Eliminate annoying reflections and master taking photos of packaged products

Photographing food products while they’re still in their packaging might sound like a piece of cake – but if you’ve ever tried it, you’ll know it can be a real hassle! Dealing with glossy, high-shine, and crinkled surfaces, along with harsh reflections and uneven lighting, causes huge issues.

In this comprehensive class, professional photographer Karl Taylor shows you that if you know a little bit about the physics of light, you’ll be able to nail any shot of packaged food with ease! This will give you a repeatable setup that you can use time and time again with a huge range of products and packages.

In this class:

  • Learn the art of food packshot photography techniques
  • Understand the benefits of polarising filters
  • Discover how to achieve a flawless pure white background
  • Key tips on eliminating unwanted reflections for impeccable results
  • Harness the potential of a softbox as a background.

Other classes that Karl refers to in this workshop include Angles of Incidence and Reflection and Polarising Light in Studio Photography.

Questions? Please post them in the comments section below.


  1. If two de-polarization filters were put over the camera lens at different rotated angles, would that work on the double plastic packaging? Thanks!

    1. Hi, no that would just cancel light out in general like an increasing neutral density filter and as you rotated more it would go black. There are some ‘variable ND filters’ that do this but I don’t recommend them as the density change is not even across the image.

  2. Brilliant video, so helpful.

    One question. As this polarizing film is so expensive, could you put it inside the soft box, fixing a smaller sheet in front of the lamp but fixed to the inner of the softbox so the film isn’t touching the lamp? Or would the light travelling through the softbox diffuser stop being polarised?

    1. Hi Adam, yes you could put a sheet inside, however polarisation is tricky as it happens from various interactions with surfaces. I’ve not tried it to see what happens if the gel was inside to see what interactions take place in the next 2 layers of diffussion.


    1h 31m 51s
    Since you have a polarization coming from two different angles couldn’t you have stacked two polarizing filters on top of each others with each having different angles corresponding to the polarization needed?
    You would loose about 3 stops but it’s not a problem with strobe lights.

    1. Hi, If you mean put two polariser gels on either the light or the camera then no that wouldn’t work it would only block the light the difference is here we are de-polarising the light source itself which is then polarised by the plastic material and de-polarised again by the camera filter, the combined polarisation of the emitted light and then the received reflected light works.

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