5 Tips for Choosing a Commercial Photographer

Area of Expertise

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Match Your Photographer’s Expertise with Your Product

Finding a photographer that is skilled at shooting your subject matter is an important consideration when choosing a photographer. Most photographers have specialties they excel at, be it portraiture, landscape/architecture, abstract or interaction shots. Those who shoot across all subject matters may have a special interest in lighting or style. When researching photographers, find ones that have strong experience shooting in the area you are looking for and always ask to see a portfolio of work.

Stylized Photos

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Decide if You Want a Specific Style or Photo Treatment

The style of your photography can be as minimal or dramatic as you want. If you are wanting a drastic style for your photography, decide whether this type of shoot will be ongoing or specific to a particular campaign or product. For long-term projects finding a photographer that you can have an on-going partnership with is a considerable factor.  Another thought to consider when choosing a specific style is making sure the style fits your brand.

Lighting Techniques

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Consider Lighting Needs

Shooting lightbox imagery is much different from shooting indoor or outdoor photography. Lighting is crucial to the way your photography will look and feel and this is typically where the professional stands apart from a novice. Light reflects and bounces in different ways throughout the day and indoor lighting offers other complications. Make sure your photographer understands lighting and can show you examples of photography shot in similar lighting conditions to what you are requesting.

Editing Techniques

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Inquire About Editing Techniques

If photos are stylized, ask what the editing process is like for the photos. The time it takes to edit may factor into your decision. Or, if you’re wanting to apply the style to existing photos, knowing the extent of editing may be helpful to your in-house creative staff.

Creativity

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Consider Their Level of Creativity and Problem-Solving

Does the photographer have the ability to switch things up when a shot isn’t working? The enthusiasm to loosen up your talent? Can they suggest different poses or staging adjustments that will enhance the product being taken? Knowing your photographer’s creative involvement is important before you go on site. If they’re used to shooting only candid shots, make sure both you and they are prepared to suggest adjustments as needed.

Before the shoot, see what level of involvement or recommendations your photographer may have for creating the best scene.

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