architectural and interior design photography

Allenc873

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I want to do architectural and interior photography for like hotels, estate agents even interior designers to showcase their work, But how do I actually get the work? do they make a website and wait to be contacted or for example hotels does the photographer contact the hotel sales and marketing manager and see if they want work done? I have been searching online trying to see how interior design photographers actually go about getting work and not finding much of anything.. so any info or links would be great thanks
 

sscarmack

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I have no experience in this matter, however photography in general...Never wait for the client, you need to do whatever you can do to reach out to the client, network, go to where you think the clients are, introduce yourself. Display your portfolio, etc.
 

KmH

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I have been searching online trying to see how interior design photographers actually go about getting work and not finding much of anything.. so any info or links would be great thanks
There isn't much info because that kind of photography is a sub-sub-sub-sub-sub-sub specialty of the larger Commercial photography business.

There might be 2 guys on the planet that only do architecture and interior design photography for a living, and I bet neither of them makes much money.

Most architectural firms and hotels will contact local, established, Commercial photographers when they want commercial photos made.
 

vvcarpio

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Create an account on houzz.com.
 

W.Y.Photo

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There might be 2 guys on the planet that only do architecture and interior design photography for a living, and I bet neither of them makes much money.

Not true good sir.

I took a class from an established architecture photographer named Don Cochran (Don Cochran) and while you are correct it isn't the most lucrative field of photography there is a lot of money in it once you get the right clients. An average architectural photographer is likely to make the same amount as a professional grade portrait photographer (which sucks because its a lot more work) but it can be done to make a living. Of course this all depends on the clients one is capable of getting.



The first thing you want to do is ensure that you have the equipment necessary to pull off a shoot of that scale and a portfolio of images that will catch the clients eye as something they would really like to have created to portray their building.

The next step is to email just about every resort, hotel, or other business based around a building that you can think of, especially newly opening businesses. To make it in architectural photography you have to really want it because people are far less likely to come to you in this field so you'll be doing a lot of reaching out.

Once you are established it may be slightly easier to get client work, especially if you get architects themselves as clients who really like how you've shown off their building. A great way to hold on to architects as clients once youve worked for them is to get educated about architecture and to talk with them about the building in order to portray it in such a way that works with the concept that they had in mind when creating the building. However, even with all of these repeat clients my professor was always telling the class that he was constantly sending out emails to get new clients. (It takes a long time to build an entire building after all, and any business related clients you receive will likely be one time deals as they won't likely need more photographs done unless they make additions to their buildings or interior changes)

I'll see if I can find some class notes or something that might help you out more.
 
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W.Y.Photo

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Attached are a couple of documents I have leftover from my class, one is a list of recommended equipment (though not all of it is necessary to begin with) and one is a guide on scouting and preparing for an architectural shoot. Hope it helps.
 

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  • AIA scout & prep.pdf
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JoeW

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I want to do architectural and interior photography for like hotels, estate agents even interior designers to showcase their work, But how do I actually get the work? do they make a website and wait to be contacted or for example hotels does the photographer contact the hotel sales and marketing manager and see if they want work done? I have been searching online trying to see how interior design photographers actually go about getting work and not finding much of anything.. so any info or links would be great thanks
First, I'm not going to talk equipment (though that's an important piece) b/c others are covering that.

Second, I'm going to assume that you're not talking about shooting for real estate agents for residential properties (b/c that's the low end of the business, you make money by volume).

There are a lot of photographers who specialize shooting architecture and interiors. However, they specialize. For instance, my wife currently works for a kitchen design business. They had 4 kitchens that were going to be included in a glossy, national publication. They are a member of SEN and SEN has a photographer on staff who flew out from California to shoot the 4 kitchens, do another gig in Maryland and then flew back to California. A big company like Lockheed-Martin will have a new building done by an architectural firm like HOK or Gensler. Those architecture/design firms will use photographic firms that specialize in interiors and buildings...and they'll usually engage with the photographers. Additionally, in my experience, they tend to establish a relationship and stick with it. So once you get "in" with a firm, you have a good chance of continuing to stay in their good graces.

My advice (if you really want to shoot architecture and interiors) is:
...Join all of the professional architecture and design organizations out there (you'd have to be an associate member of AIA since I assume you're not an architect). Then become active in them. Join the local chapters and volunteer your time (not just as a photographer--serve on the program committee or the membership team). Maybe join the local chamber of commerce as well. Provide pro bono services for the organization you're volunteering for (which earns good will, proves you're good, and creates IOUs). Trust me, this absolutely positively works. The others leaders in the Chamber or IIDA or AIA will feel like they owe you AND they will want to throw business to someone who volunteers in their organization/chapter. Additionally, most of these organizations (big and small) don't engage in an extensive search for the "best" photographer. If you meet acceptable quality standards and you're active and visible in their professional association, you'll be the person who gets the calls.
...Reach out to all local professional businesses that serve architectural and design firms. These are called NCIs or Non-Client-Influentials. They will recommend you (if you impress them) to the designers and architects (and it won't be seen as a sales pitch).

If this sounds like you're spending most of your time marketing to a niche, I'd argue that this is exactly how you succeed. You need to be seen by architects and designers as THE photographer in their area, the one they know, they one they've interacted with at their professional meetings. There may be thousands of potential photographers they could turn to but they'll go with the one that have professional contact with and who knows their business.
 
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Allenc873

Allenc873

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First, I'm not going to talk equipment (though that's an important piece) b/c others are covering that.

Second, I'm going to assume that you're not talking about shooting for real estate agents for residential properties (b/c that's the low end of the business, you make money by volume).

There are a lot of photographers who specialize shooting architecture and interiors. However, they specialize. For instance, my wife currently works for a kitchen design business. They had 4 kitchens that were going to be included in a glossy, national publication. They are a member of SEN and SEN has a photographer on staff who flew out from California to shoot the 4 kitchens, do another gig in Maryland and then flew back to California. A big company like Lockheed-Martin will have a new building done by an architectural firm like HOK or Gensler. Those architecture/design firms will use photographic firms that specialize in interiors and buildings...and they'll usually engage with the photographers. Additionally, in my experience, they tend to establish a relationship and stick with it. So once you get "in" with a firm, you have a good chance of continuing to stay in their good graces.

My advice (if you really want to shoot architecture and interiors) is:
...Join all of the professional architecture and design organizations out there (you'd have to be an associate member of AIA since I assume you're not an architect). Then become active in them. Join the local chapters and volunteer your time (not just as a photographer--serve on the program committee or the membership team). Maybe join the local chamber of commerce as well. Provide pro bono services for the organization you're volunteering for (which earns good will, proves you're good, and creates IOUs). Trust me, this absolutely positively works. The others leaders in the Chamber or IIDA or AIA will feel like they owe you AND they will want to throw business to someone who volunteers in their organization/chapter. Additionally, most of these organizations (big and small) don't engage in an extensive search for the "best" photographer. If you meet acceptable quality standards and you're active and visible in their professional association, you'll be the person who gets the calls.
...Reach out to all local professional businesses that serve architectural and design firms. These are called NCIs or Non-Client-Influentials. They will recommend you (if you impress them) to the designers and architects (and it won't be seen as a sales pitch).

If this sounds like you're spending most of your time marketing to a niche, I'd argue that this is exactly how you succeed. You need to be seen by architects and designers as THE photographer in their area, the one they know, they one they've interacted with at their professional meetings. There may be thousands of potential photographers they could turn to but they'll go with the one that have professional contact with and who knows their business.
Not true good sir.

I took a class from an established architecture photographer named Don Cochran (Don Cochran) and while you are correct it isn't the most lucrative field of photography there is a lot of money in it once you get the right clients. An average architectural photographer is likely to make the same amount as a professional grade portrait photographer (which sucks because its a lot more work) but it can be done to make a living. Of course this all depends on the clients one is capable of getting.



The first thing you want to do is ensure that you have the equipment necessary to pull off a shoot of that scale and a portfolio of images that will catch the clients eye as something they would really like to have created to portray their building.

The next step is to email just about every resort, hotel, or other business based around a building that you can think of, especially newly opening businesses. To make it in architectural photography you have to really want it because people are far less likely to come to you in this field so you'll be doing a lot of reaching out.

Once you are established it may be slightly easier to get client work, especially if you get architects themselves as clients who really like how you've shown off their building. A great way to hold on to architects as clients once youve worked for them is to get educated about architecture and to talk with them about the building in order to portray it in such a way that works with the concept that they had in mind when creating the building. However, even with all of these repeat clients my professor was always telling the class that he was constantly sending out emails to get new clients. (It takes a long time to build an entire building after all, and any business related clients you receive will likely be one time deals as they won't likely need more photographs done unless they make additions to their buildings or interior changes)

I'll see if I can find some class notes or something that might help you out more.

Thanks guys really appreciate all the info, got a much better idea of what to do.. :)
 

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