At heart I am deeply aligned to the ‘get it in camera’ rather than ‘by computer’ approach to photography. This requires a camera, some lights, and ways to control the lighting. Perhaps most importantly it requires grip, or stuff to hold stuff with.
I think, in the early days, I’d probably try to hold everything myself at the same time as I would attempt to do a timed shutter release.
For these images, the most difficult aspect was to work out how to hold the parts. For the heavy manifold, I chose to set up what is in effect a small goal-post with some c-stands and a crossbar and then suspend the item with safety-bonds. The background is Translum is set up to allow light to pass through it for a white background so this was a pragmatic choice, I knew I was doing other smaller rear-lit shots. It took a while to work out what to do with the acres of wire from the backs of all of the valves on this item though. In the end I gaffa taped them, fed them out of the side as a bundle that could be removed in post with the support cables.
The smaller electrical items could have been Photoshopped (screens + units) but I doubt the results would have looked so real. They were all supplied with short power leads but how to support them initially had me flummoxed. Ages ago I bought a set of school science lab retort stands and clamps probably knowing that this day would come! For those interested the item is powered up in the clamp and shot with a single long exposure in the dark with an initial strobe firing. The strobe lights the whole scene and then the long exposure enables the display to show. There is Photoshop work but just to remove the clamp and the power lead.
It’s actually all pretty simple, just looks a bit chaotic.