Commercial fashion photography is one of the most flourishing and rich branches of photography. All across the globe, there are companies that need a photographer to fulfil their needs of commercial fashion photography, and thus helping them in promoting their latest clothing line or accessories. Watches, perfumes, clothes, jewellery, and other apparel…all cater to popular fashion trends.
These are promoted by impressive photographs, where tall, handsome and beautiful models don them and make a style statement. One important feature of this photography is that it lays stress on the object that is being marketed through the photo, and so, the object has the primary importance in the frame.
The use of this kind of photography is that it enhances the effect of the text that accompanies such photos. They are meant to market and sell the products and, the first thing that attracts the viewer’s attention towards the ad is the beautiful photo of a beautiful model with the product.
Means of Promotion
Every shot is directed towards meeting the purpose of creating buzz among people and boosting sales. The companies use this medium to promote themselves and to find a centre stage in the world of fashion and design.
There are two kinds of fashion photography- Catalogue photography and Editorial photography. Let’s elaborate of these two now.
Catalogue photography – this is the kind of photography that concentrates on showcasing the new designs and textures in clothing. These aim at putting across the visual details of the cloth or the product in question. There are certain tips pertaining to this type of photography, which are as follows:
Catalogue photography aims at making the viewer stop and look at it- the product, its beauty, its details and the overall composition.
After all, what use is a photograph of if it doesn’t make the viewer stop flipping the pages of the catalogue?
For this reason, it is recommended that you shoot this kind of photograph with a neutral background. There should not be too much detail apart from the product itself in the frame- like too much lighting of the background, multiple objects in the frame, etc. These will, otherwise, distract the viewer and make his mind wander off to other things.
Display one product or clothing sample per photo. This will lend an individuality and add its own charm to the product in question.
When deciding about the entire layout of the catalogue, plan to insert the photos according to specific groups. For example, if you are displaying the various shades in which a gown is available, then place these photos consecutively to each other, in continuation. Placing photos randomly in the catalogue will cause confusion in the minds of the viewers
Catalogue photography is a means to showcase the beauty and quality of the products in question. This is why it is required that the photos be flawlessly beautiful. For this, the photographer must ensure perfect lighting and carefully done styling of the entire set; each and everything must be arranged as per the theme of the photograph and the type of cloth in question.
Coming to Editorial photography, these photos are seen in magazines and newspapers, and their purpose is just to accompany the article in question. These photos are not meant for advertising something, but simply to lend the written article a visual appeal. The ways in which one can produce good editorial photographs are as follows:
Since these photos accompany written material and help in its progression, the photographer must think about adding that thematic progression to the photos so that they can run along well with the progression of the article. For this, he must think in terms of thematic continuity. He should always plan out for a series of related photos that are capable of communicating the story through visuals.
Since the photos coming in the newspapers and glossy magazines, are to be often retouched in Photoshop, it is advised that you click them in RAW format. This format facilitates in taking pictures in their most uncompressed state. This gives the photographer a greater level of freedom and choice while tweaking the colour, contrast and tone in the post-processing stages, thus matching the photo to the required standards of the magazine.
It is advised that you have a clear idea of the article that what is it about. This will give you a clearer sense of what is being expected and in how many ways can you achieve it.
So, this is what the commercial fashion photography is all about. The catalogue and editorial photography styles are the two important pillars based on which the photographers plan and execute their shoots. In comparison to catalogue photography, which is more organized (in terms of industry), editorial photography is less paying as the magazines get hundreds of photos every day from numerous photographers. Many a times, if proper precaution is not taken, your photos may be used by these magazines free of cost. Also, they tend to pay less. So always send working prints of your photos or watermark them suitably.