If photography is your call, you are already aware of the beauty and pleasure that comes from taking shots as well as the fulfillment of finding something unique and special in every part of your shot. Such passion is essential if you want to make it big in the photography world. So, once the time comes for you to take paid shots, or to take part in commercial photography assignments, you should be prepared for different types of requirements. After all, when commercial photography is concerned, you need to bring out the client’s vision before your own. However, if you’re ready to take this step, you can effectively balance these sometimes varying aspects of photography. This is why you need to pay attention to the following tips and advice.
Talk to the client in advance
In order to make sure that you can do this job, and avoid any hardships and misunderstandings at the shoot, you should talk to the client beforehand. Basically, you want to learn as much as possible about client’s expectations and requirements. This will save both of you a lot of time and trouble. It’s not only about the possible disputes during the shoot but the fact that you can also prepare yourself for whatever vision the client has, and complete the job even better. Therefore, the first important thing to keep in mind is never to hastily accept shoots you know nothing about.
What are the images going to be used for?
A lot of amateur photographers forget to ask about this particular aspect of the shoot, which can be very unfortunate for the perfect realization of the project. Essentially, you just have to ask about the intended use of the photographs you’re about to shoot. First of all, this is important information in regards to your pricing. You can adjust your quote depending on whether the photos are going to be used nation-wide or locally. Secondly, different uses for images require different techniques, layouts, formats, etc. You won’t have completely the same process when taking photos for a billboard and a poster, will you? To make things easier and more efficient for both you and your client, just remember to inform yourself about the intended use of the photos.
Be realistic with your quote
Charging for your photography work can be troublesome for photographers who are just starting their career in commercial photography. Therefore, it’s essential that you stay aware of your worth and capabilities. If you’re insecure about the pricing, talk to other professionals in the field or ask around on the photography forums. What’s more, keep in mind that you’re not just charging for one day of the shoot. There’s a lot more to it. You’ll have to invest time and effort into research, discussion, prep and post-production as well. Treat yourself and your client fairly and set a reasonable quote before the shoot itself.
Proper preparation is everything
When it comes to commercial photo shoots, the key to everything going smoothly is in the adequate prep. Not only should you think about the general theme of the shooting, but prepare the lighting setup, do your research about the place, pack the necessary props, etc. This is especially important if you’re going to take photos of people. In general, professional model photography shoots are extremely rewarding and fun, but only if you make sure everything is in order and you know what you’re doing. If you’re completely clueless about the whole setup, lighting and message your images should convey, the models are also going to get anxious and uncomfortable. So, why risk a successful gig and great fun with colleagues due to the lack of preparation?
Ask for the client’s approval
The client should be on the set so that they can sign off the images once everything’s done. Basically, before you start removing the whole set in order to proceed to the next step or shoot, the client has to check out the photos and approve them. You don’t want to remove anything from the set if you don’t know whether the client will want something more or ask for some extra shots. If they can’t be there for the shoot, you can still send the images to them so that they can approve them by signing off a document online at least.
It’s true that commercial photography is challenging and it can also cause some tension if you’re not used to working with clients. However, this is also a very rewarding and fun job that will become even more enjoyable once you start earning from it. Not to mention the satisfaction of seeing your own photos in ads, posters, online libraries, etc.