Wikipedia defines a packshot as follows:

"A packshot (also pack shot) is a still or moving image of a product, usually including its packaging and labeling, used to portray the product's reputation in advertising or other media. It is an important stimulus to sales, with the goal of triggering in-store, on-shelf product recognition." (click here to read full article)

Thus, a packshot is:

  • An image of a product
  • Including its packaging and labeling
  • Which acts as an important stimulus to sales
  • By triggering in-store, on-shelf product recognition

Therefore, unlike many other forms of photography like fine art, glamour, portrait, landscape and so forth, packshot photography's primary purpose is to accurately reflect the product exactly as it appears in real life. There is little or no room for artistic or creative licence. The photographer needs to ensure that colours, shape, form and any lettering or writing is clearly and accurately reflected.

In the wine industry, packshots are an absolutely critical element in terms of product recognition. One merely needs to go into any bottlestore and have a look at the bewildering array of options and choices the consumer faces. There are literally hundreds of different wines available on the shelves. How then is the average consumer going to be able to select the wine they read about in the latest 'Wine' magazine, or on any of the myriad websites offering wine reviews? Certainly not by the winemaker, the 'tasting notes' or even the review itself, but by the visual image that accompanied the article - the packshot.

So, what makes a 'good' packshot?

  • All writing clear and legible (click here for photo)
  • Bottle shape well defined and silhouetted (click here for photo)
  • Design elements such as embossing and foiling should appear as such(click here for photo)
  • Sufficient highlights to create a 3-dimesnsional perspective without distracting from the label (click here for photo)
  • Sufficient variation in lighting between the left and right side, to indicate 'rounding' without losing any detail. (click here for photo)
  • Accurate colour reproduction.

Of course, there is inevitably an element of aesthetic and artistic discretion and preference. Some prefer more light, some a darker image, some stronger highlights and some less. At The Packshot Studio we remain committed to our clients and their needs and preferences first and foremost. We will always deliver according to your requirements. If you're not happy, we will shoot until you have the photo that does justice to your product.