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Author Topic: IKEA Catalog & Traditional Photography  (Read 9880 times)

Gulag

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IKEA Catalog & Traditional Photography
« on: September 01, 2014, 01:15:47 am »

Today, around 75% of all IKEA’s product images are CG, and they have a ‘bank’ of about 25,000 models. “These are all created at a ridiculously high resolution,” explains Martin, “We render them in 4Kx4K, and they need to hold up to that resolution. We need to be able to do whatever we like with the renderings - print them on large walls in the stores if we need to. Even if most of them are only ever used on the website, they all have the capability to be printed very high-res.”

http://www.cgsociety.org/index.php/CGSFeatures/CGSFeatureSpecial/building_3d_with_ikea

 

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Stanmore

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Re: IKEA Catalog & Traditional Photography
« Reply #1 on: September 01, 2014, 03:35:17 am »

Almost every major manufacturer's product image is CGI now, most often rendered with KeyShot. IKEA are known to be rather reserved in this respect, having only 75% uptake as stated in the article you linked to. Many of their competitors in homeware & room sets have been 100% CGI for years with their catalogue, advertising & marketing. In fact many great room set photographers have either left the business or switched their production to CGI instead of lights, camera, action. Phones, tablets, cars, watches and -genuinely- cameras: All these items in both advertising and marketing collateral are almost always photographically rendered CGI's now... The entire Microsoft Surface product range imagery - All created with KeyShot.
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MrSmith

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Re: IKEA Catalog & Traditional Photography
« Reply #2 on: September 01, 2014, 04:37:14 am »

"Phones, tablets, cars, watches and -genuinely- cameras: All these items in both advertising and marketing collateral are almost always photographically rendered CGI's now”

define “almost always” ? i would suggest that phrase means 90-100%? either way very far from the truth. yes CGI is used a lot but to suggest it’s replaced almost all advertising/marketing photography for phones/cars/watches is naive, CGI certainly has its place (often combined with real photography) but it hasn’t killed off real photography.
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Stanmore

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Re: IKEA Catalog & Traditional Photography
« Reply #3 on: September 01, 2014, 07:05:57 am »

Alas I have not conducted an extensive global survey on Blue Chip companies image production processes for their key products.

...but, I do know this...

In the context of my original posts description of *major manufacturer's* product imagery for marketing/advertising...

The vast majority of above-the-line automotive ad's vehicles are wire-frame CGI (photography still often used for the environment).
Practically every luxury watch mfrs Website and advertising is CGI when it comes to the actual product.
Electronic devices such as phones & tablets - Almost all CGI now.
Homeware / furnishings - Speak to any design company specializing in this sectors catalogues/brochures and they'll tell you that IKEA is the odd man out with only 75% CGI, as most of their clients now use no photography now (in the UK at least).

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JoeKitchen

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Re: IKEA Catalog & Traditional Photography
« Reply #4 on: September 01, 2014, 10:33:25 am »

I am not really sure what the purpose of this post is?  To discourage us photographers about product photography, and that still life as we know it is doomed? 

Or is this just an observation someone is sharing? 
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jferrari

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Re: IKEA Catalog & Traditional Photography
« Reply #5 on: September 01, 2014, 11:22:52 am »

I'm with Joel on this. I just don't get the question in the OP. Or is it just some free advertising for IKEA?
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Slobodan Blagojevic

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Re: IKEA Catalog & Traditional Photography
« Reply #6 on: September 01, 2014, 11:35:48 am »

I am not really sure what the purpose of this post is?  To discourage us photographers about product photography, and that still life as we know it is doomed? 

Or is this just an observation someone is sharing? 


I, for one, find the OP fascinating and I am glad it was brought to my attention. It tells me a bit more about the state of the world we are in, and the direction we are going. And the direction, while not necessarily being fatal for photography, isn't encouraging either.

However, when I flip through IKEA's 2015 catalog, everything seems to be traditional photography. Would someone bother to post an example of CGI from that catalog?

Stanmore

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Re: IKEA Catalog & Traditional Photography
« Reply #7 on: September 01, 2014, 12:13:24 pm »


However, when I flip through IKEA's 2015 catalog, everything seems to be traditional photography. Would someone bother to post an example of CGI from that catalog?

The IKEA CGI's look like very well done traditional photography. I've Googled-up some a couple of other concise links on this subject...

"Most kitchen, bedroom and bathroom companies now use CGI to create their marketing material and no one has realised." ... http://www.dezeen.com/2013/11/27/cgi-renderings-for-catalogue-images/

KeyShot software is the 'new' kid on the CGI block that is being widely adopted: Sensationalist title of the month award on this one... http://www.wired.com/2013/03/luxion-keyshot

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Justinr

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Re: IKEA Catalog & Traditional Photography
« Reply #8 on: September 01, 2014, 02:49:15 pm »

The bad news is that it is displacing talented and experienced photographers, but the good news is that it only applies to products which already have a virtual 3D model and, so far, is contained to shots of new products.

However, it is likely that real live models will also find their services dispensable as the technology improves so it won't just be photographers that will become redundant. Come to that consumers will also suffer as product shots start to take on the bland uniformity of websites, all with a white background and 'conceptual' imagery. Boring!
« Last Edit: September 01, 2014, 02:56:46 pm by Justinr »
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kaelaria

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Re: IKEA Catalog & Traditional Photography
« Reply #9 on: September 01, 2014, 03:13:07 pm »

I have to admit I never knew the catalog was CGI - but I never looked at it much, just the website or here in person.  That high percentage sure shocks me though!  But, it is easier in the long term for some companies.  It's even creeping in to one of mine, the cigar biz.  1/2 of my clients want the photos photoshopped so much anyway, I always wondered why they don't go CGI.  It's certainly not common at all, but it's being used now for the first time to do cigars and boxes.
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Gulag

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Re: IKEA Catalog & Traditional Photography
« Reply #10 on: September 01, 2014, 04:46:42 pm »

I am not really sure what the purpose of this post is?  To discourage us photographers about product photography, and that still life as we know it is doomed? 

Or is this just an observation someone is sharing? 


The purpose is to inform. To discourage oil painters from their artistic pursuit when photography had freed them from manual illustration needs of capitalism is the same question you asked.  I hope you are not serious.
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MarkM

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Re: IKEA Catalog & Traditional Photography
« Reply #11 on: September 01, 2014, 10:58:07 pm »

I gave a presentation the year before last at PhotoLA about the confluence of photography and CGI loosely stemming from this blog post. As preparation for the presentation I spoke with several major car photographers. Every one of them had moved to primarily shooting back plates without cars with the intention of dropping a CGI model into the shot in post production.

This has huge benefits:
  • You don't need to bring the car on location
  • You don't need all the people and gear to light a car
  • You can create the ad from CAD designs before the first car is even produced
  • You don't need to close roads or get permits

It's not even really correct to call it the wave of the future — it's the current reality for car advertising — and it can be for all intents and purposes indistinguishable from straight photography right down to the reflections on the glossy surfaces.

The photographers generally weren't bothered by this — they were still working and were able to travel lighter, but most acknowledged that eventually the technology will move to a point where the entire photograph can be rendered with a better cost/benefit ratio than shooting. If you browse through the portfolio of a good render house like Recom Farmhouse you'll find some pretty amazing work — some a composite of photography and CGI and some pure CGI. It's a quickly-changing scene with a lot of opportunity (and risk).
 
« Last Edit: September 02, 2014, 12:31:47 pm by MarkM »
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JoeKitchen

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Re: IKEA Catalog & Traditional Photography
« Reply #12 on: September 03, 2014, 07:14:35 am »

Here in the USA, I know that IKEA still uses a good deal of traditional photography.  I know this because one of the prop stylist that my girlfriend works with works on the IKEA catalog with another photographer.  (Well in the last few issues at least; the ad firm that did it just lost the account.)

CGI is nice, but I do not think it is going to replace traditional photography, or at least not higher end photography.  I see a mix being used more often then just straight CGI. 
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jjj

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Re: IKEA Catalog & Traditional Photography
« Reply #13 on: September 07, 2014, 08:21:43 pm »

Here in the USA, I know that IKEA still uses a good deal of traditional photography.  I know this because one of the prop stylist that my girlfriend works with works on the IKEA catalog with another photographer.  (Well in the last few issues at least; the ad firm that did it just lost the account.)
Maybe to another agency which uses more CGI?  ;)
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BernardLanguillier

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Re: IKEA Catalog & Traditional Photography
« Reply #14 on: September 07, 2014, 11:34:32 pm »

JoeKitchen

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Re: IKEA Catalog & Traditional Photography
« Reply #15 on: September 08, 2014, 11:59:20 am »

Maybe to another agency which uses more CGI?  ;)

Maybe, although I am not sure.  From what I heard, the ad firm decided to use a different photography/stylist team, just to give it a try and mix things up.  That team screwed up and the ad firm lost the account. 

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NancyP

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Re: IKEA Catalog & Traditional Photography
« Reply #16 on: September 18, 2014, 08:00:14 pm »

Why should commerce be any different from Hollywood? I think that the younger generation (ie, younger than myself), raised on computer games, is primed to regard CGI as reality. Traditional fashion photography hasn't been all that traditional recently, what with laughably bad Ps "plastic surgery" jobs or the use of male-hip-dimension transgender women as models (previously a little-known aspect of fashion photography) to get the favored no-hips-with-C-cup-or-larger-breasts fashion look that doesn't exist in the general non-surgically modified population. For many customers, traditional photographic realism is over-rated  - they want fantasy.

Signed, Grumpy Old Fart.   >:(
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jjj

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Re: IKEA Catalog & Traditional Photography
« Reply #17 on: September 19, 2014, 11:19:48 am »

.....or the use of male-hip-dimension transgender women as models (previously a little-known aspect of fashion photography) to get the favored no-hips-with-C-cup-or-larger-breasts fashion look that doesn't exist in the general non-surgically modified population.
I've known real women who fit that description and without enhancement. One such friend did have cosmetic surgery though - to make her boobs smaller. She was G cup or bigger and had a really petite frame.
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John Koerner

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Re: IKEA Catalog & Traditional Photography
« Reply #18 on: September 19, 2014, 12:12:35 pm »

Without tits and hips, it's not a woman IMO ...

"I fear animals regard man as a being like themselves, but which has lost its sound animal common sense; they regard him as the absurd animal, the laughing animal, the crying animal, the miserable animal."
~ Friedrich Nietzsche
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jjj

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Re: IKEA Catalog & Traditional Photography
« Reply #19 on: September 19, 2014, 12:25:19 pm »

Without tits and hips, it's not a woman IMO ...
Yet others don't like big boobs and bums. Just personal taste that's all.
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