#192 – Curtis Hustace – Product Photography

Curtis Hustace

Curtis is a product photographer for Amazon and other retailers such as Kohls. Curtis takes us into the world high volume photography that most of us never really thought about, but something that is critical to these business.

We also spend some time discussing Curtis’s light painting!


Curtis Hustace

(go here for his About Me page,  selected info below.)

Curtis Hustace has been a commercial photographer for 30 years. He has done everthing from portrait, to commercial, to eCommerce photography for some of the biggest eCommerce companies in the world.

Curtis has over 400 published images in magazines and probably over 40,000 images published online for companies like Amazon and Kohl’s departments stores.

Show Notes:

(paraphrased responses)

  • Intro Questions:

    • How did you get into photography?
      • Did pretty much all types of photography.  Started in 1986 doing college sports (all sports) for 3.5 years in B&W Film.  Received six rolls of cover per year.  Also portrait and product photography
      • Are you a full time photographer?
        • Full Time eCommerce product photographer…shooting jewelry.  
      • What do you currently photograph?
        • Jewelry for Amazon traveling around 1,700 miles per week.  All jewelry for Amazon is shot in Louisville, KY.  Also shooting for Kohl’s and Walmart.  
          • Kohl’s will give a bag of what is required to be shot for the day with a stylist that preps the product.  Could be any product that Kohl’s sells.
          • Amazon – I prep the item
      • What gear do you shoot with currently?
        • Shooting with a Canon with a very shallow depth of field which requires focus stacking.  Utilizing software from Helicon to merge the photos.
  • Interview

      • How do you go about finding clients?
        • Started as hit and miss…had an agent in Tennessee that asked if I wanted to shot for eCommerce.  Provided portfolio and didn’t hear back for over six months.  In January 2012 started with shooting high heel shoes and this transferred into jewelry photography.  
        • Between Amazon / Kohl’s and Walmart I am full with work.
      • Type of image file?  Camera equipment is provided.
        • RAW
        • Capture with Canon Eos utility for video to capture One
        • Process out as jpeg
        • Focus Stack with Helicon
        • Post production in India and verify a white background
      • Light Stacking
        • Aaron Jones Hosemaster
        • Harold Ross – same quality as hosemaster but much cheaper
        • Image with fruit review – took 4-5 hours to shoot and 5-6 hours in photoshop to edit.
          • Dark room with no ambient light
          • Shots are 2 – 20 seconds
          • Shoot each item separately
          • Stacking via photoshop
      • Anything with Real Estate photography?
        • Not as much as previously…the e Commerce has taken most of my time


Discuss the show in our forums! – Forum Post

Album for this episodes can be found here – Curtis Hustace

Albums from previous episodes can be found here – Podcast Images


Curtis Hustace


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