Commercial Photography

Commercial photography involves taking pictures for commercial use: for example in adverts, merchandising, and product placement.


It is also used in corporate brochures and leaflets, menus in cafes and restaurants, and similar commercial uses where we enhance a text. Commercial photography is used to promote or sell a product or service. There are a number of ways that we can be used to better market products and corporations.

What is Commercial Photography?

Selling a Product

Commercial photographs of product lines, or of individual products, can either focus upon the design of the product (for example the sleekness of a kettle, or the depth of carpet fibers), or upon the use of the product (for example, the functions on an iPhone, or playing games on the Wii). Product commercial photography reveals the detail and feel of a product to the customer, while advertising commercial photography is more likely to focus upon the status and attractions of the product.

Promoting a Business

Businesses may want to use commercial photography to promote themselves, or particular aspects of their work. There is a difference between commercial photography, which is often performed in a studio or isolated environment, and industrial photography, which often takes place on the site or factory floor. Most commercial photography professionals will not take on an industrial photographic shoot. A common method of promoting businesses is through architectural and building photography, where the business can be seen as a product.

Food Photos for Menus

Food can be photographed to promote menus or for use in culinary sections of magazines: these shots can either focus upon the food, rather like catalogue shots of clothes, or they can take in the mood and feel of a venue. Food photography can be performed by those with knowledge of nature or still-life shots. Food made by the restaurant should be photographed there, so the photographer will need to have portable lighting and backgrounds for the photographs.

Fashion & Interiors

Fashion and Interior Design photography is probably the best known type of commercial photography, as these types of photographs show up in advertisements as well as editorials in magazines. There are a range of styles and techniques in commercial Fashion and Interior Design photography, from catalogue photographs which attempt to show the entire detail of clothing, to editorial shots, furniture, to entire rooms, which attempt to use the clothes and textures in unusual and dynamic ways.

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