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December 19, 2022

AI Assisted Product Photography

Artificial intelligence (AI) is becoming increasingly prevalent in the field of product photography, and it is transforming the way that product images are created and used. Our team has been exploring some of the ways that AI can assist with the creation of product photography, more specifically how it can help us when mocking up placeholder items for our Shopify themes.

The usual process our team would follow is the following:

Find inspiration online through Unsplash/Dribble/Pinterest of products similar to what we need. We would then create a mood board of these inspiration pieces and work on applying the desired characteristics to our clients website. This process worked very well but overall can be time consuming for our designers, leading to longer development times and higher project costs.

With AI incorporated into the workflow, our team now can identify a 1-3 pieces from online or use the existing inventory images from our client to generate variations of images. Overall we can feed our AI workspace 1 image and a few key prompts to generate 4 variations at a time. Once we have found a variation we like, we focus down on that image and progress from there. It has helped us increase our design capacity by a factor of 4x.

A real world use case for this is our in-development Shopify theme. When creating themes for public sale, it can be difficult to find free to use, consistent and aesthetically appealing product photography for the example site. We were able to overcome this challenge by prompting AI to create a few images for us. Overall it took our team 30 minutes to drill down the key identifiers we wanted to use and then a further 30 minutes to test variations within our AI workspace. One hour in and we could create up to 4 images every minute that fit our designs perfectly.

As an additional benefit, AI is also being used by us to automate the process of retouching and editing product images. By using AI-powered tools, we can quickly and easily touch up images to remove blemishes, adjust lighting and colour, and add filters and effects. Overall this helps us maintain a high level of design output while freeing up our designers time for more intensive tasks that AI has yet to assist with.

Bonus Material: We have included a few of the above mentioned product shots below:

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