How to get Ghost Mannequin Photography for Clothing

July 30, 2020 in Product Photography

How to get Ghost Mannequin Photography for Clothing

Images that bring your very products to life are important for generating sales. Especially for fashion retailers, it means having real people wearing and using your product.

Live models are termed to be expensive, thereby making the set-up difficult and be unreliable at some high times. A mannequin, on the other side, is a smart one-time investment. But the main thing is that you don’t want to showcase the mannequin. That’s the time when the ghost mannequin comes into the picture. Ghost mannequin photography is the best way to enhance your product photos. In this blog, we are discussing Ghost mannequin photography for clothing.

What is Ghost Mannequin Photography?

Ghost mannequin photography is also termed as “invisible or 3D mannequin or the hollow man”. For apparel photography, the technique is considered as an easy and powerful post product part for showing off the product and thereby solves the showcasing problem.
The invisible mannequin gives a product various dimensions and shows different parts of the product that will otherwise be guarded by a mannequin or model in just a single shot. Basically, the perfect way for an eCommerce product shoot is ghost mannequin photography.

Mannequins serve your products to hold their actual shape, which can create the product images to be more professional and consistent which in return increases their desirability to customers. It also allows you to click multiple shots of a single product on the model or the mannequin. Therefore, it combines the images to remove the model from it in the post-production process. Ghost mannequin photography is a different style of the product photography that allows a customer to look at a clothing item in a 3D environment. We know that ghost mannequin photography is a perfect solution for appeal owners to show their products.

The mannequins can be distracting, thus there is a simple alternative to that is you can create the ghost mannequin effect for your specific product images just shown as below:

How can you create the 3D mannequin effect?

In Ghost mannequin photography, the fundamentals of the technique are simple. But the execution of the same is a bit time consuming and contains a good practice in order to achieve it effectively. The entire process will be clearly elaborated in this post.

Starting from the studio set up to the final product image. Till the end of this blog post, you will be able to understand every term of ghost mannequin photography.

At the most basic level, a 3D ghost mannequin is a combination of more than 1 or 2 images, also known as “composite images”. The first image is clicked on the body following the 2 and more are the flat view of any part of the interior garment which was blocked by your model or the mannequin often shot on a white foam board

An excellent way for us to explain how this effect is created is to display you, therefore have a look at some more product images of the invisible mannequin and the images that went into their creation. Invest some extra attention to the foam board shots and how inner areas of the product are open for the camera.

With this, it is pretty sure that you got a good knowledge of the ghost mannequin photography. Keep reading to know as to how you can set up the studio and get the final result.

Planning the photography

In ghost mannequin photography, for creating the invisible mannequin images, you first need to capture the photos of your product being worn by the mannequin from the back and the front.
The model should be styled very minimum, and the long hair of the mannequin should be tied up which will not create any obstruction to the view of the product.

planning the photography

Selection and posing of mannequin

The most common process in fashion photography is to use models or mannequins to showcase the exclusive shape and fit of each product.
Most of the retailers sometimes prefer the option to photograph their products being modeled and remove the models and make the mannequins seem invisible layer in Photoshop.

In Ghost mannequin photography, If you are planning to use a model, then make sure that you should use a static pose as displayed in the image above.
It is believed that white mannequins are totally non-reflective, therefore can into the white background. This will make the editing of the mannequin image a much more easy task.

You should be sure that the products fit your mannequin or model by using the correct size and altering up the garment to fit in it correctly.
In case the product contains the sleeves, then make sure that it should be positioned properly so that the viewer will be able to notice it well.

To execute the invisible mannequin technique, it is important you should create high-quality photographs in the studio setup. The low quality of your image will make them less appealing, 3D ghost mannequin effect will add to your images.

Essential Equipment and Set up

In Ghost mannequin photography, the techniques of camera and lighting, equipment, and placement all come into the picture here. On the basis of each particular product which you are about to shoot.
At the time when you are capturing the top parts, it is important to place the camera up to the direct level of the chest area. Therefore the camera should be placed across from the hip area to click bottoms. Capturing a product from an angle that is either at a good height or too low may create the garment to look tapered and inaccurate.

Essential Equipment and Set up

Capturing the Product

In Ghost Mannequin Photography , always get the telephoto zoom lens to click your images will help you to minimize distraction. they will offer you the flexibility to move closer to small-sized objects and be farther away from larger objects.
For your understanding, here we have given two examples of images of a tank in which the top is being worn by a mannequin. The picture on the left was clicked from below the chest-height, which directly results in an unappealing view of the product. Whereas the front and back image on the right was captured at chest-height, shown in a flattering view of the product.

Few DIY Tips to Generate the 3D Invisible Mannequin Effect

  1. First, click a front and back view of your specific product which is being worn by your mannequin or model.
  2. Following that, styling is important for your mannequin and hang the product on a white foam board. Then capture both front and back views. The respected foam board clicks will offer you to include the inner parts of your garment shown as once you gather the images together, as shown below.
  3. For the particular collared shirts and the same type of products, just ensure that the top is open as well as the inner back is clearly visible to the viewers. It is possible that you may even want to rotate it inside out in some instances.

A Step-by-Step Post Production Processes

After clicking the pictures, the creation of the ghost mannequin effect becomes so simple actually. In this also you have 2 options with you, either you can do it on yourself or can offshore it to the product images editing services like PixelPhant .

Solution 1: DIY Photoshop Instructions

Generating the ghost mannequin photography is so simple. accustomed that you are having adequate and proper post-production software. Your image should be photographed properly. Offshoring this hectic work will help you to save your company a great amount of time and frustration. In case if you actually want to create the edits by yourself. then you can follow the below seven easy steps to get your own invisible ghost mannequin effect in Photoshop.1.

1. Create the layers by opening files in Photoshop

As a first step, open your mannequin images in photoshop with the foam board image. Choose your invisible mannequin images, and create a new background layer. Fill the layer with white as it will be helpful to give you the overall background when you are done with the image at last.

2. Select the product in the mannequin image with a selection tool

Second comes the selection process for your mannequin image. zoom in and select the best tool among the pen tool, lasso tool, magic tool or with the quick selection tool. All these tools will help you to acquire the desired result of the selection process. It is important to think that, using a white background at the time of shooting will offer you to erase off the mannequin easily. It happens because of the color selection between the product and the background.

3. Refine the image and place your mask

When you are done with the selection of images, refine your mask to make it tight and nice. This step can be completed with the refine edge tool in the select menu. Place your mask by clicking OK in the refine edge dialogue box. Now at this particular point you will be able to see your product floating freely on the white background created in the beginning.

4. Repeat the above steps with the foam board image

It is the high time to switch gears and replicate the 1, 2 and 3rd step on your foam board product image. Now here the image will be seen as odd at first but it is essential to have the one two work with. Capturing the product from inside will offer you the full inside view, acquiring the ghost mannequin illusion. We assure you that it will appear great at the end.

5. Fuse up the images

when you have to drag both the mask from your foam board image on to the image of your specific invisible mannequin product image when completed with the tight and clean masks. Make the organization of layers, such that the foam board layer seems to be lower than the mannequin effect. After this, position your foam board layers and adjust the proportions so that it perfectly fits in

6. Remove non-essential elements of the foam board layer

Now at this stage, it is a bright idea to hide your mannequin layer and remove off all the unwanted parts of the foam board layer. You really only need to keep that neckline triangle between the shoulders. It’s important to remember to remove that piece in the foam board image because it’s already in place in the mannequin shot.

7. Include the shadows and save

In the end, add the shadows in between the two layers. And give the specific product some depth and then save the copy of the photoshop file including all of the layers intact, just to be safe. As you have saved the layer file, flatten, or merge all the layers. Again save the image as a different file. This last step will create a professional look at your image and a realistic one.


We are professionals at ghost mannequin photo editing services and ghost mannequin photography, having taken thousands of images using this new procedure for fashion businesses. Ghost mannequin photography uses a 3D effect and sells for more online. Basically, Ghost mannequin photography or invisible mannequin photography used in fashion photography for clothing lines. If you are thinking to get Ghost Mannequin Photography for Clothing, this blog very helpful in giving ghost mannequin photography tips. We highly recommended reading this blog The Evolution of 3D Ghost Mannequin – From Imagination to Reality. PixelPhant gives one of the best ghost mannequin services.

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