5 Lighting Mistakes That’ll Make Your Brand Look Cheap

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5 Lighting Mistakes That'll Make Your Brand Look Cheap


Lighting plays a big part in how your customers perceive your brand. Think about it. You see products, signs, and logos daily that you have no real connection to. They’re just there, in front of you, on the side of the road, or in a store window. Maybe you see a hotel with poor lighting or a supermarket with terrible product placement. This is because everything in your environment can trigger an emotion or feeling.

5 Lighting Mistakes That’ll Make Your Brand Look Cheap

In this article, we’ll show you some common mistakes and what to do instead to make your brand look professional and expensive with just a few simple lighting tips.

1. Too Much Contrast

One of the easiest ways to make your brand look cheap is by using too much contrast in your images. For example, if you’re shooting a product against a white background, there should be no shadows on the product. This will make it appear as if it has no depth or was cheaply made.

To shoot products against a white background, use natural light instead of artificial lights like flash or strobes. This way, you’ll get soft shadows that make your product look more appealing and realistic.

2. Failing to Light Your Background

If you have a dark background (like a black tablecloth), your product will look like it’s floating in space. This makes your product look cheap and unprofessional.

The simple solution is to choose the best ring light for your camera and set it up on a tripod. Then, place the ring light behind your product and ensure a small gap between the tablecloth and the edge of the ring light. This will create a nice shadow that makes your product look like it’s sitting on top of something solid.

3. Using the Wrong Light Modifier

If you look at professional photography studios, they almost always use some modifier with their lights. If they don’t use them, their photos will look amateurish and cheap because they will be too bright or too dark in certain areas.

You can occasionally get away with using no modifiers (portraits come to mind). Still, if you want your images to look professional, you should learn how to use modifiers like umbrellas and soft boxes to control how the light hits whatever object or person is being photographed.

4. Not Using Enough Light

Using too much light can make a space feel cramped and closed in, but using too little light can make it feel dark and gloomy — like you’re trapped in a cave! How much light you need depends on what you’re trying to accomplish with your lighting design. For example, if you want customers to feel comfortable while browsing products in your store or online store, you’ll want plenty of ambient light, so they don’t feel afraid or stressed out by darkness (which will cause them to buy less).

5. Using a Static Background

If you’re shooting in-studio or on-location, then static backgrounds are unavoidable. But they’re one of the biggest mistakes photographers make when trying to create high-quality photos for their brand.

A static background doesn’t give viewers any information about what’s going on in the photo besides what’s right in front of them — which means they have no idea what brand is being advertised!


If you want to make your brand appear high-end and expensive, paying attention to these five photography mistakes is crucial. By avoiding them, you can turn any shot into one that looks more polished and professional.

5 Lighting Mistakes That’ll Make Your Brand Look Cheap