How to Choose a Commercial Photographer

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There is a lot to consider when it comes to choosing a commercial photographer. However, with so many to choose from these days, how do you narrow down your search? Recommendations are always handy but there are plenty of other things to consider before making that choice. Here are a few tips to help you select the right commercial photographer:

Whatís the job?

There are many different styles of commercial photography so one of the first steps is to make sure you choose a commercial photographer who is best suited to the job. For example, a nature photographer may not be the best choice to shoot your products as they could use different camera equipment and may not work out of a studio Ė Mother Nature provides that for them! Most commercial photographers nowadays will specialise in particular or similar styles of photography and their techniques may vary. For example a food photographer could also do product photography but itís unlikely their skills will stretch to more niche styles such as sport or street photography.

Check out their portfolio of work

Have a look through the photographerís portfolio of work to see if their style matches your needs. Some commercial photographers might rely on a contemporary or rather edgy style, while others are more traditional. This is particularly relevant in wedding photography, but also in the commercial world. If your brand is associated with traditional family values, then perhaps that edgy style is not going to represent your brand the best.

Go and meet with them

Youíve narrowed down your selection so now itís time to speak to the photographer. Go and meet them at their studio so you discuss your needs and see whether the photographer can accommodate them. It helps to go in with some clear ideas so you can set some parameters for the photographer to work within, but also listen to their recommendations and find out if they work for you. Also make sure you check out their studio and the equipment they use to ensure they have the right resources available for your job such as lighting, space and even props. For instance, if its straight product shots youíre after make sure the photographer uses an infinity cove, which has no edges or corners, as a background, as this will help to keep down any post editing costs.

Discuss your budget

Once you are happy the photographer offers you what you want, now itís time to have the discussion about fees. Know what your budget is and let the photographer know this right up front. Determine what the costs will cover such as the image photography rights, editing, location, hiring of props & any additional camera equipment as well as the overall length of the shoot. This should all be covered in the contract between you and the photographer.

Above maintain open and regular contact with your commercial photographer so they can really understand your needs. By building a strong rapport with each other this should lead to a more successful photography shoot.

Neil Adams is a commercial photographer and Managing Director of Powerhouse, a UK creative commercial photography company based in Leeds, UK.

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