Corporate photography: what is it?
Although there may occasionally be similarities between the sorts of photos produced, it’s important to discuss what sets corporate photography apart from commercial photography.
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In the end, helping brands and companies flourish is what corporate and commercial photography—like advertising photography, for example—both entail. However, corporate photography aims to complement a company’s overall image, whereas commercial photography is primarily focused on selling things. If it makes sense for their specific target market, a corporate photographer may also include some commercial images in their portfolio.
To capture a corporate shot of one of their furniture designers inspecting a prototype of her most recent piece of furniture, for instance, IKEA may employ a photographer. An article explaining how IKEA collaborates with a diverse group of designers, each with their own design philosophy and area of expertise, may utilize that image. After that, they could employ a commercial photographer to take the final shot, which might be shown in their catalog or on a billboard.
The main purpose of the second image is to sell a product, but the first image serves to promote the company by providing viewers with an inside look into the inner workings of the brand and the procedure that leads to them selling their items. Corporate photography may be thought of as helping a brand with its PR, whereas commercial or advertising photography helps with its sales and marketing.
Corporate photography may encompass everything from simple headshots and pictures of important company members to highly staged, produced photos that could take a whole crew to complete. This is a terrific, in-demand genre of photography to pursue professionally because of the wide range of possible clients and the variety of picture types that can be made within the corporate photography umbrella.
Corporate Photography Types
Although the picture of a CEO in a suit may come to mind when thinking about corporate photography, there is much more to it than that. The several categories of photography that are covered by the corporate umbrella are listed below.
Conventional Business Images
Corporate photography will always include conventional portraits as a significant component. High-quality photographs of the individuals that comprise a corporation are beneficial for almost any firm, since they may be used for everything from corporate websites’ “About Us” sections to company profiles.
It’s important to remember that traditional doesn’t always equate to formal or really professional. Everything is dependent upon the company for whom the corporate images are being taken. If it’s an insurance agency, pictures of the staff members dressed professionally would be suitable. A IT business could have a more laid-back and informal aesthetic.
The framing, composition, and setting of these pictures are what make them “traditional.” The portraits always feature the subject’s head and shoulders, however they might be more narrowly cropped or full-body. Usually, the background is unobtrusive, like a wall or a continuous hue.
Editorial portraiture, which is frequently referred to as environmental portraiture, combines classic portraiture aspects with a scene that has significance. These kinds of portraiture place the individual in an environment that conveys a narrative about them, their position within the company, or the company as a whole.
Take a look at this corporate chef portrait. An image of them grinning on a dark background would be considered a classic portrait. It would be an editorial or environmental portrait if the photographer instead takes a picture of them in their kitchen or even while they are cooking. This kind of picture might appear in a magazine article about a business or even on the website of the company.
Compared to standard portraiture, editorial portraiture often requires a little more imagination and preparation since the subject and the photographer must decide together what story they want to convey via the portrait and then select a suitable setting. Though impromptu shots are also possible, these photos are usually staged.
Business Headshot Photographion
In terms of composition, headshots are different from portraits. Headshots simply show the subject’s face, whereas portraits can include the entire body in addition to the head and shoulders. Although corporate headshots are less prevalent than corporate portraits, there are specific situations when a company could request that you take headshots.
Actors and singers are among the entertainers who frequently use headshots. One kind of firm that could use a corporate photographer to take headshots is a professional theatrical group.
Event Photography for Businesses
Trade exhibits, conferences, and celebratory occasions like galas are examples of corporate events. Photographing corporate events include documenting specifics like the setting and décor, obtaining pictures of any significant events like speeches and presentations, and most significantly, obtaining pictures of the guests.
It’s critical for the photographer to be able to shoot covertly in this type of event photography so that subjects aren’t distracted by being in front of the lens. The goal is to take unscripted pictures of attendees having a good time without interfering with the activities. Being able to interact with the visitors a little bit usually helps since it makes them feel more at ease and produces nicer photos.
Event Photography for Brands
In recent years, companies of all sizes, from tiny startups to huge global conglomerates, have embraced the pop-up idea. Although it’s a subset of corporate event photography, it merits discussion on its own since the photographer’s focus may change slightly from that of typical event photography. The purpose of an event like pop-ups or brand activations is frequently to sell a new product or draw attention to a brand. It is important to capture the features of a photogenic, branded area that your client may have invested in, along with any items that are being advertised.
As a brand event photographer, you want to get pictures of visitors using the product if they are given one or are encouraged to use it.
Product and Service Photography for Corporate Use
Unlike commercial photos that are aimed to promote the goods, corporate product or service photography usually tries to depict a company’s providing of services or its product, but in a more editorial manner. The divide between corporate and commercial photography can be rather hazy, and this is a nuanced one.Let’s return to the head chef of a fine dining establishment as an example. He may be plating one of his inventions in a corporate product and service shot. In this instance, the product is both being exhibited and acting as a company image. This kind of picture would probably be used to promote the restaurant’s desired image to patrons or to convey a tale about the establishment. An image of food that has been highly stylized to seem as appetizing as possible and is used in social media advertisements to draw more customers to the restaurant may be considered a commercial food photograph.
Business-Side Architectural Images
Images from businesses that may be utilized online, in brochures, or in periodicals are frequently used to share their workspace with the public. By taking pictures of the workplace, corporate photographers may put their expertise in architecture photography to use. A corporate photographer may also be asked to capture an exclusive moment of a company’s facilities, such a state-of-the-art production line or new equipment.
How to Begin Taking Corporate Photos
Your web portfolio is your most valuable resource for obtaining paid assignments as a corporate photographer. Potential customers may view your work, preferred style, and list of clients that have trusted you with corporate photo shoots on your website including your portfolio of corporate photography.
A great portfolio not only demonstrates your abilities as a photographer, but it also demonstrates your professionalism and level of commitment to your work, as seen by the lovely, user-friendly website you’ve created for it. Frequently, your portfolio will also provide prospective clients with contact information and other information they would need to know before employing you, such your location.
The significance of your portfolio implies that, in order to begin a career in corporate photography, you must first develop a portfolio that you are happy with. Of course, even if your portfolio is ready to go, there is still a lot of work to be done. You still need to market your company and make cold calls to prospective customers. However, your chances of landing those jobs are slim without a portfolio.
How then do you go about putting up that portfolio? You have two options for learning photography: enroll in classes or learn the craft on your own and amass a collection of photos. Each approach has advantages and disadvantages, and the best decision will rely on the specifics of your case.
Examining Business Photographs
The abilities you acquire in any photography degree at an art school can undoubtedly help you become a better corporate photographer, even though there isn’t a specific degree for corporate photography.
The fact that corporate photography incorporates a variety of techniques is one of its distinctive features. It’s evident from our discussion of the many forms of corporate photography that having expertise in product, event, and portrait photography is beneficial. There will be moments when you have to shoot outside, in a variety of lighting conditions, or in a controlled studio setting. This implies that you will become a better corporate photographer if you have as much experience as you can photographing various topics in these various circumstances.
You will be able to obtain this crucial practice by enrolling in a formal photography program. It will be a challenge for you to compose in a variety of ways and become accustomed to various shooting situations. Additionally, many people think that the pressure that comes with attending school is useful. Without the support of your friends and the desire to perform well in your classes, it can be challenging to maintain shooting consistently.
However, four years of education before joining the workforce can be costly for photography programs, and not everyone is interested in doing so. Additionally, if you have a lot of shooting expertise, some classes might not be necessary for you. If so, you might want to think about enrolling in specialized classes to hone your abilities in those specific areas where you think you might use some improvement.
Developing Into An Independent Corporate Photographer
You may still work as a professional corporate photographer even if attending photography school doesn’t appeal to you or is too expensive. Keep in mind that your portfolio is your most valuable tool, thus producing photographs worthy of your portfolio should be your primary focus if you want to become well-established in your industry without attending college.
Any photographer will tell you that without practice, improvement is impossible, even with academic study of the subject. Whether you want to do it yourself or via education, the key to being the greatest corporate photographer you can be is to push yourself to keep shooting and try new things with your picture thoughts and styles.
Offering your services for free to some local businesses that resemble the kinds of clients you hope to book someday is a smart way to start off when creating photographs for your portfolio before you have established yourself. You’ll have the opportunity to take authentic corporate shots for your portfolio, and the majority of businesses will be delighted to accept the offer and receive some new photos for free.