Commercial Photography-how to get in the door?

Discussion in 'General Shop Talk' started by robindesigns, Oct 27, 2009.

  1. robindesigns

    robindesigns TPF Noob!

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    I've done some commercial work before, mainly with children's clothing and using my own models at very low rates. I've always wanted to get in with some of the name brand children's clothing companies. I know probably alot of them have their own inhouse photogs, but I know there is work out there that is freelance. My question is, how do you get yourself in the door with these companies? Does anyone have any experience with this they don't mind sharing? I'm specifically looking for children's clothing.

    Thank you!
     
  2. UUilliam

    UUilliam TPF Noob!

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    I am, not a commercial photographer but my best guess would be:

    1. Contacts
    2. Portfolio
    3. Resume / CV
    4. Confidence
    5. Price list
    6. Set up a meeting with various retailers, even if they decide they want more than just kids clothing, just give them what they ask (to an extent I suppose)
    7. It helps if you own / rent your own studio and have your own gear.

    This is just my uneducated guess.
     
  3. Christie Photo

    Christie Photo No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    It's a tough nut to crack. You have to talk to the right people, and that can be much harder than you might imagine.

    You're right that the really big companies will do this in-house, but that doesn't mean they do EVERYTHING in house. But remember, its not just the photography that's in house, but all aspects of production... from concept to final. Either way, it all originates at corporate headquarters. The marketing department is likely to be on site, and the director will likely have established sources for anything they farm out.

    But, you're only as good as your last job, and situations chance from time to time.... new director, cost-saving strategies, etc.

    Practical experience will be your best asset. You've done some commercial already. You know what it takes to go from layout to final image, meeting deadlines. Take this work (actual printed pieces, tear sheets) and approach some smaller agencies. The agencies get the clients, and you get the work. You may even expand this way, as one agency will have clients with differing needs.

    -Pete
     
  4. LarissaPhotography

    LarissaPhotography TPF Noob!

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    I've been wondering about commercial photography too. We got our first big commercial job from a guy who knows a guy scenario. We're probably going to give it a shot and see if it's a fit for us.
     
  5. jubb

    jubb TPF Noob!

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    I gotta find an in with food photography. I always make my blog readers hungry with my food posts.
     
  6. robindesigns

    robindesigns TPF Noob!

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    Thanks everyone for all the ideas and suggestions! I know it will probably be a lot of work, but fun and rewarding in the end!
     
  7. craig

    craig TPF Noob!

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    Of course marketing your work is key. Come up with a database of clients that you want to work for. Hit them hard with email and print campaigns. That is a topic with in itself, but you get the idea.

    Pete as always is on point. At some point they will need a photographer. You just have to position yourself so that you will be the one they choose.

    Love & Bass
     

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