Commercial photography fashion portrait

commercial photography by Write Image, fashion portrait.

Surely all professional photography is commercial photography, isn’t it? Not exactly. Most photographers have some sort of specialism, a niche that they are especially happy in or are particularly good at. It is probably fair to say that skill follows happiness, so it is a good idea to find someone that loves what they do.

I love working with small business owners as their enthusiasm and unique perspective makes for an interesting story. Big corporations may have the slick premises and impressive budgets, but to me they lack the excitement and fluidity of smaller, independent brands.Certainly at the grass roots level, generally speaking. That is not to say that I would refuse work from the giants if it were to come my way. I would just look for the personalities or the local twists for a point of interest. There is always a story to discover and share, I love finding it.

I’d do anything for love, but I won’t do that!

…As the late, great Meatloaf said. Personally I have no desire to photograph weddings or newborn babies. There is nothing wrong with wedding or newborn photography, It’s just not my cup of tea. I love a good wedding, I’d even take lots of pictures, I just don’t fancy being the one responsible for capturing the event. Babies are cute and the newborn ones have not worked out how to irritate their adults yet, they tend not to be much fun though. Too much fun and not enough fun, there are my reasons in a nutshell for discarding two particularly profitable genres at a stroke. I am my own worst enemy. The thing is though,when a customer comes looking for a commercial photographer, they want to find what they are looking for. We do not want to have to wade through a stack of different genres to get to what we want. Business people don’t have the time for that. they know what they want and want to find it quickly.

Commercial Photography.

So ,lets get back to the point of the post; what is commercial photography and why is it important to you? Commercial photography is considered a genre in its own right and is defined as promoting and marketing products or services. In the 21st century it is the life blood of commerce, as important to the internet age as the railways were to the industrial revolution.

Although I’m not a betting man, I’m willing to wager a good coffee that you are more likely to research your next purchase on your phone than you are to walk down the street and look for it. Even if you live on the High Street. An idea pops into your mind and you will be looking it up before the kettle boils. You will read descriptions and reviews of course but you really want to see that thing, don’t you? This season’s model too, none of that archive nonsense, that’s so last year darling.  I’ll go even further, (but stop short of betting on the cake), that you are inclined to see if you can get it locally too. If you can, you will want to see who made it, how it was made, what makes it better and why it’s worth the extra money that you are willing to pay. That’s a whole bundle of extra images required right there, I’m sure you will agree.

Do you want to know what makes this even more exciting for me as a photographer? Commercial photography includes several other photographic genres in its hand knitted embrace.

Portait Photography.

People in all of their diverse beautiful glory. Most people think they do not look good in photographs and 99% of them are wrong. I challenge you to look at any issue of National Geographic and you will see dozens of beautiful people who have never applied makeup or been to a hairdresser, looking great. Self image is the deciding factor most of the time not how you actually look. A bit of effort and getting the light to caress you in the right way is my job. You will be surprised how well you come across. Putting yourself and the team in the picture builds trust and confidence in your customers.

Product Photography.

Still life is not necessarily high on my list but it can be fascinating and challenging. Reflective surfaces are tricky to capture without including the camera reflection, glass does weird things to light, colours can change and even quite mundane things have to look desirable. This sub niche often encompasses Food Photography, which is much closer to my heart than is good for me. The real upside for me is that even when the food is beautifully presented by the chef / baker / confectioner etc, it usually has to be repositioned for the photograph. Once I’ve footered with it then it is really destined for the bin. I think it would be rude not to try it, don’t you? Testing the produce enables me to review the item from first hand experience, life can be hard as a photographer.

Architectural & Interior Photography.

As I have already mentioned, people are curious about places and processes, so it pays to show how and where products are made or services delivered from. It may be as straightforward as an exterior shot for your google listing or a detailed tour of the facilities you have to offer.

Fashion Photography.

Fashion is about the clothes and may not even feature a model at all. Online ads may have a garment on a dummy, folded, draped or even with the model photoshopped out. Personally I think the latter approach is weird but if that’s what the client wants… Commercial photography can be very artistic but it essentially boils down to what each client wants. There is usually a shot list of prescribed requirements but if there is time, it can be good to bring my own ideas too.  Sometimes they stick, sometimes not. Fashion photography was once the gateway to fame and riches for talented photographers but as with everything else,  that world is changing, not always for the better either.

So What?

In conclusion images can outlast the people or scenes they contain, they may now be around forevermore. They are also hugely consumable, even disposable. Social media images may have a lifespan of minutes or hours before they are lost in the melee. They will remain current longer on a website or brochure but the appetite for newer and more is relentless.

Photography does not need to be as expensive as you might think. A lot can be achieved in a short time with a bit of planning. Good quality images are an investment, not a cost. They will serve you well in many ways and of course they are tax deductible. let the taxman take the strain for your next launch or expansion and give me a call.

I look forward to working with you so stay awesome.  Jim.