Commercial Photography or Advertising Photography? 7 Feb 2022
Both advertising and commercial photography are specialist types of photography that can support a business’ marketing strategy. However, they are not the same, despite sounding fairly similar.
Commercial and advertising photography can easily have their definitions muddled and confused with each other. Although they do have some similarities in that they involve marketing a business, overall they are drastically different. This guide looks at the key differences between what an advertising and commercial photographer would do.
What is Commercial Photography?
Commercial photographers would focus on specific products that a business sells. A link is frequently drawn between types of commercial photography and ‘stock photos’ that you see online when you search for particular products. Stock photography often has a negative reputation, but quality images stand out from the rest in a positive way.
The primary aims of commercial photography are to capture an image of a product in its best possible light. Commercial photography convinces customers to buy a product by showing how great it looks and performs. The idea is that the consumer is already aware of it.
Commercial Photography Tips
You will require a high-quality camera and equipment during a commercial photoshoot.
Your commercial photographer should be using a high-end professional camera with prime lenses – ranging from macro to wide-angle lenses – along with advanced studio lighting, light modifiers, stands, tripods and other types of photographic equipment. I would advise you not to use a photographer that uses substandard cameras or one without a comprehensive range of lenses and supporting equipment.
Commercial photos are entirely concentrated on a product, with the photo background, lighting, styling and editing all focused on enhancing its features.
What is Advertising Photography?
Advertising photography is the type of photography that you’d expect to see spread across some pages in a print magazine, brochure or sales booklet.
An advertising photographer would capture ideas, themes, feelings or concepts through clever photography methods. This photography specialism is more promotional than commercial photography; you’re still selling a product or service but using images to tell a story.
Put simply, advertising photography is all about enhancing your products’ appeal in abstract ways, rather than merely saying, “here it is!”
Advertising Photography Tips
Much like commercial photography shoots, high-quality photographic equipment is necessary. Even if an advertising photographer isn’t focused on capturing the excellence of a product physically, the only successful way to impress consumers is with high-quality imagery.
This relies on an advertising photographer to depict their shots as best as possible, with a professional camera, lenses, studio lighting, tripods and light modifiers.
During a photoshoot, you should be asking yourself the following questions as your advertising photography session progresses:
- “Do these photographs align with and support my vision for this advertising campaign?”
“Do these advertising photos benefit or detract from the story I’m trying to tell within my campaign?”
Key Differences in Advertising and Commercial Photographers
It’s clear to see that there are stark differences between an advertisement photographer and a commercial one.
In simple terms, commercial photography is relatively specific with photos focusing on a particular moment in time, while advertising photography is slightly more abstract, with such advertisement photos telling a story, selling an idea or concept.
Someone who is known as an advertisement and commercial photographer would be able to recommend the most suitable solution based on a client’s marketing strategy, aims, targets and audience.
You can argue that a commercial photograph is something of a conclusion to the story you’re telling with advertising photography.
That said, both of these professional photography types can be powerful supporting marketing tools for any business.
Looking for a Professional Photographer in Berkshire?
Whether you are looking for a wide range of professional advertisement images to tell your story, or high-quality product photography, look no further than Mike Green Photography.
I am an experienced advertising and commercial photographer in Berkshire, based near Reading, covering most areas in the South East. However, I will venture further afield on occasion, depending on the type of photography you require.
Most of my photography services support marketing and PR applications, websites, brochures, catalogues, social media marketing and other marketing materials. I have extensive experience providing commercial and advertising imagery for the tech, industrial, manufacturing, engineering and consumer industries.
That said, I will be more than happy to discuss any business’ photography needs and provide you with a detailed scope of work. Whether you need services from lifestyle photography to portrait photography – I can help you.
Please fill in the contact form to get a photography quote, and I will get in touch with you shortly thereafter.