Investing in Product photography can be an overwhelming experience. There are so many product photographers out there, so how do you know if you’ve found the right one for your business?
Here are a few tips to help you make sure you choose the right product photographer to capture photos of your products and brand that will make you jump for joy when you receive them.
1. Does their photography style align with what you are after?
Every photographer has their own unique style when it comes to shooting and editing photos. You want to make sure that their style is the same as what you are after. There are a few ways that you can research this. Firstly, check out their Instagram and Website. Secondly, reach out to them and ask if you can see more of their portfolio. Most photographers only share snippets of their work on Instagram, and it’s usually very curated as it is likely reflecting their own brand style (we like to have aesthetic Instagram feeds too!)
So, if you are after a style that you don’t see on their Instagram, they may have an example in their archive of work – you need to ask. And the right photographer will be able to quickly and easily communicate if they can achieve the look that you are going for.
For example, my Instagram feed is quite bright and light, but I have worked with more earthy brands to create moodier product images – I don’t share those on my feed.
2. Who have they worked with previously and can you find testimonials?
Testimonials are a fantastic way to read about other peoples experiences with product photographers. If you can easily access their portfolio and read through a bunch of testimonials, this will tell you two things.
Firstly, that the photographer is experienced and has a lot of happy customers.
Secondly, it’ll give you an indication of what to expect when you hire them. Are they easy-going, professional, knowledgable etc. – these are all the sort of traits that you might read about in testimonials.
You want to make sure that you will connect and gel with the product photographer. Communication is SO important as it is the pathway that leads to both of you being on the same page and having a gallery that you are both thrilled with.
I try to pepper testimonials throughout my website, and I have a saved highlights section on Instagram called Kind Words.
3. They communicate clearly about expectations
An experienced photographer will be able to tell you exactly what you can expect from them if you are going to work together. You should be able to find this out on their website, or by talking to them. If they can be clear about the next steps, provide you with a contract and give you clear timeframes, you are likely in the hands of an experienced professional.
For example, on my services page, you can see a clear breakdown of each step of the process of working with me. Part of my process also involves a quick, creative brief that helps me determine the expectations from the photoshoot so I can ensure I am delivering the kind of images my clients are after.
I also send out a contract and terms and conditions which help protect both my clients and me.
4. Do they use professional equipment and editing programs?
If you are investing money into product photography, you want to make sure that you hire someone who has professional equipment. Sorry but an iPhone or point and shoot camera just won’t cut it. A good product photographer will hand over beautiful, high-resolution images that can be shared online, printed, and used endlessly without compromising the image quality.
I always send my clients a gallery of high-resolution images with the option to download them at a web-ready filesize (great for websites).
A professional camera allows the photographer to shoot in RAW, which means they can retouch the images professionally afterwards (aka in Lightroom and PhotoShop – not just adding filters on top of the images).
5. Are they willing to talk on the phone, and do you receive prompt responses?
Talking on the phone is the best way to connect with someone. It allows you to have a casual conversation, hear genuine emotions and clarify any questions or concerns on the spot. If you can’t get a hold of your photographer on the phone or by prompt email response, this is not the best sign. You want to invest in someone who is reliable, contactable and who is not afraid to connect with other human beings.