Photography has been in a state of change for many years. In the meantime, the digital photography has almost wholly pushed the mechanical process to the edge. But now, further change is approaching. If you give a trend the chance to spread further, computer graphics will soon have ousted photography from a critical business area. Specifically, it is about the use of classic photography in retail. That could have dramatic effects on products of photography in particular.
Customers in trade and industry have increasingly started using renderings instead of real photos. Therefore, sooner or later, photography threatens to disappear from the market. That puts the industry under further pressure. After all, she had already had to come to terms with digital photography since the 2000s. The craft faded further and further into the background because what was not suitable was made suitable through image processing. Today almost everyone carries a smartphone with a good camera on board. That, in turn, ruined the compact camera market. Professional photographers have so far been able to resist numerous trends. Many of them continue to work with SLR cameras. But the last upright men now also threaten to come under pressure.
The photos generated on the computer threaten to overtake them in some areas. Numerous large dealers replace manual labour with graphics. The best example of this is Ikea because they first used a rendering in their catalogue around 15 years ago. The Bertil armchair made of pine wood was to find many successors. Just a few years later, the group presented a quarter of its products with digitally crafted pictures. In 2014, the proportion of these graphics was already three quarters. The improved continuously hardware and software made this development possible. In the meantime, a post-processed photo can hardly distinguish the drawings created on the computer.
Ikea’s pioneering role had a dramatic impact. Many other dealers and manufacturers have followed this example. That is very easy to understand with specialized products such as smartphones and computers. They are all only presented in graphics. Only when the photos also include people who do clients like to use photographers. But the industry has long been working on digitizing this area as well. In the foreground of the efforts is the attempt to make the recordings credible and cheap. The creators link digital content with recordings from the real world.
You can do this by presenting 3D models. So the customers can view the product from all angles and even place it in their own home. This development will undoubtedly mean that traditional photography will lose its place in e-commerce. The trend seems to be unstoppable. After all, technology is developing faster and faster and can be easily used by smartphone, even by non-tech-savvy customers. The global developments of the past year have accelerated digitization here too. A return to old patterns seems very unlikely from today’s perspective.