How to take amazing product photos with only one light!

Let’s unpack it together in this photography tutorial.

Video tutorial for easy product photography lighting setup

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Easy product photography lighting setup!

Simple 1 light setup for product photos

Product photography is all about lighting! Your lighting for product photos will make or break the quality of your product photography.

In this tutorial, Chris Pieta shares the simple setup that he uses to make six-figures from his product photos in his business.


You only need this simple setup to take amazing product photos!

You need to be aware of the light sources in the room where you take photos. There can be natural light, overhead light, even light from a computer screen. These will all affect the outcome of a photo being taken.


Lighting for product photos Tip 1: You only need to use one light for great product photos

Lighting in a studio or specific room can be controlled to get the best light for your photos. 

Turn off all overhead lights. Cover any natural light sources as best you can. And have your one light source pointed at your product setup. 

Chris uses the Nanlite Forza 200 with reflector attachment. It’s a continuous LED monolight that is great for both photography and video. 

The light output is at 5600 kelvin, which is perfect for simulating daylight as it’s a daylight balance color temperature.

This monolight is relatively affordable compared to other options and can be easily mounted on any stands. 

Product photography lighting setup with one light


Lighting for product photos Tip 2: Positioning the Light

When you have a specific photo light set up, you can control the light by positioning (what angle the light is coming from) and diffusing (how harsh or soft the light is).

For flat photos, position the light overhead.

To create depth with the lighting, position is at 45 degree angle up and to the side. This gives an even light across the product, good depth, and interesting shadows.

For dramatic shadows, position the light just to the side of the product scene. This creates long, dramatic shadows and makes the colors pop. 

Positioning the light changes the product photo


Lighting for product photos Tip 3: Diffusing the Light

Diffusing your light (or not diffusing the light) will create different effects for your photos. 

Using a light diffuser will make the light softer than the naked bulb. No diffusing means the light will be bright, strong and can be a little too harsh.

There are different types of diffusers you can choose. A large dome diffuser (big fabric dome over the light) creates really soft light but can be a bit overbearing if you’re working in a small space.

Alternatively you can use a simple light modifier panel to shoot the light through.

This will also diffuse the light nicely without taking up too much space. Other diffusers include rectangular and octagon shaped you can use as well.

Diffuser creates soft light and top light creates less shadows


One light and a few techniques to get incredible product photos!

Chris makes it look super easy, and it is! You can get many different product photo effects just by moving the one light around and changing the diffusion.

Get better at your photography with this comprehensive guide!

Which of these product photography lighting tips will you apply NOW?


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