Commissioning Professional Photography

So your smart new product range is fresh from the factory or your new Italian restaurant has had its final lick of paint and is looking damn cool! What next? A brand-new brochure, a call to your nearby journalist, a full page advert in your trade magazine, a brilliantly designed email campaign or just a web-site update? All of these tried and tested publicity techniques will undeniably help hike your business profile and essentially drive new sales, particularly important in our current economic recession. So do you dust down the trusty Pentax, throw back the curtains and give it a go yourself or do you bite the bullet, phone the bank manager and call in a pro?

Digital cameras can obviously help novices take finer quality shots but using an novice to photograph an important photo can be counter productive. The affect a professionally shot photo has on a clients marketplace is so much better than that of a quickly grabbed snap from a digital camera. Commercial photography will sell your product or your company, unprofessional photography will only devalue it. So surpass your competitors and contact the pro!

You wouldn't suppose an architect who deals with home extensions or conservatories to be able to design a new state of the art hotel. There are various specialist types of photography and few photographers would profess to be master of them all, so be certain to locate one that ticks your boxes. Study local photographers thoroughly and check out their web-sites.

Usage. How do you intend to use the photos, will it be local, national or even international advertising or just a new brochure and a site update. Do you imagine needing usage for just 1 or 2 years or do you require longer? Discuss your particular requirements with the photographer so he/she can give you with a realistic quote.

Copyright issues and intellectual property. Numerous clients don't fully grasp copyright concerns and have an impression that because they've paid for the photographs that they own them. The reality is the photographer always keeps copyright of the photos and simply gives you authorization to make use of them exclusively for the requested time, territory and media. Photographers will always strive to offer you a licence that is appropriate for all your requirements and unless you intend undertaking worldwide advertising this will be combined in their price.

Get in touch. Contact potential photographers for a chat or preferably try to arrange a meeting. Really hammer out what you demand, it's also a excellent opportunity to see if you actually warm to them?

Ask for a quote. Most photographers will charge a day rate, 1/2 day or hourly with costs (travel, digital file processing, retouching etc) extra. A number however will supply all inclusive quotes for some types of shoots, such as pack shot photography. Be as defined as possible when describing what you require so that the quotation can be as accurate as possible, don't forget to discuss usage.

Set up the shoot. If you have not already had a meeting with the photographer it is in most cases a good idea to do so previous to the actual shoot day. Present the photographer your product or the location you need photographying, talk about specific requirements and any special plans needed.

Prep. Based upon on the type of shoot make sure everything is all set for the photographer e.g. the product(s) are readily available and spotlessly clean, the location is in tip top condition etc. The specifics really make a difference!

The big day. Unless you are 100 percent confident that the photographer totally understands your brief try to be attainable throughout the day to add direction, help with queries and just make sure you really get what you need. If you can't make it to the shoot ask your photographer to email over some test shots and at the very least be available to take a call. However rigid the brief is most photographers worth their salt will be able to add their input to a shoot, commonly these spontaneous shots are the award winners so don't stifle their creative juices too much!

After the shoot. Thanks to advances in digital cameras many photographers will cheerfully preview your photographs on a lap top or even via an online proofing gallery which is a great way to edit your shoot off the cuff. The skilled and time consuming task of processing your raw files, along side any specific retouching will normally be carried out later on in the studio.

Supply of the photographs. Once the photographer has completed his/her post-production they will generally supply you or your designer with a disk full of gorgeous colourful picture files. File transfer via email or FTP is also becoming more popular and can often prove a more productive option if time is pushed.

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