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The Right Questions To Ask Before Hiring A Product Photographer

by Lyn Pasco February 4,2020 3404 Views

Hiring A Product Photographer

The right set of product photos is one of the keys to a successful business. As an entrepreneur, there will come a time that you will need to hire a product photographer for your brand.

Photography is a broad field and a mix of genres. It is essential that you are able to narrow down your choices before you start to hire a product photographer. For example, wedding photographers do not fit your requirements unless your products and services are related to the wedding industry. Even product photographers have their own areas of specializations. There are those who are experts at taking wardrobe photos while some are more effective at shooting food or other types of products. It will be illogical to hire a wedding photographer if you are selling food products, isn’t it?

Related Post: Which is The Right Niche to Be a Successful Photographer

To find out if the one you will have is the perfect fit for your business, here are top five questions you must ask before you hire a product photographer:

8 Important Questions to Ask a Product Photographer

1.  What Type Of Work Is Included In Your Portfolio?

Based on the portfolio, you can already sense the quality of work, style, and what you can expect from the photographer. Take note of the subjects in the photos. Are they related to the industry you are in? Do you think the photographer can make your products look as beautiful as the ones he or she took? You can compare the aesthetic appeal of the photos to your brand and see if the style used will also suit your products.

2. What Services Do You Offer?

Every photographer varies on what services they offer in a package. For example, the photographer may or may not include special retouching services and will only offer basic photo post processing edits. Photographers may also add charges if they are shooting outdoors or if there are specific equipment to be used. It is helpful that you are aware about what to expect so you can prepare ahead of time.

3. What Are Your Credentials?

It is basic to say that a photographer’s portfolio is what his photos show. There are plenty of photographers who did not have any formal education in photography. A photographer’s credentials and backgrounds can be determined by asking about how the photographer trained for professional photography. How long has the photographer been in the commercial photography industry? Sometimes, experience what makes a great photographer. What clients or firms has he or she worked with before? 

Big clients mean he has worked his/her ass off getting to this point of his or her career. And what projects is he or she currently working on right now? You should make sure that your project together is clear and is not compromised with his or other projects. Be mindful of this and make schedules clear between you both. So, these vital questions will give you an idea about a photographer’s background. You can appreciate the level of professionalism he or she has achieved by the caliber of the past clients.

4. How Many Photos Can You Deliver/How Long Is Your Turnaround Time?

Most of the time, the reason why you hire a product photographer is because you are trying to keep up with a set timeline. You must be aware about how many photos a photographer can deliver per hour or at least have an idea with the turnaround time. Aside from the actual shoot, photographers also need time for post-processing. This information is crucial because you do not want to end up not having enough photos for a specific campaign. Generally, you need to have more photos so you will have a variety of images to choose from.

5. Do You Have Backups?

This is one bare essential. Today with the digital world/era, everything is easy from taking photos to saving it and to sending. It is also ironically true that we could lose data just as easy. So, every professional experienced photographer should always have a backup plan. And you should be as a client be assured of that before you hire a product photographer. So when you lose your images on your end you can get a copy from them. Or if they accidentally lose your images they also have a copy every time. The photographer should be the one responsible for this. 

Also this applies to equipment and staff. What happens if anyone else involved in the shoot got sick? What if a camera breaks in the middle of the shoot? Do they have someone else to cover the work or they have extra equipment so that the shoot could go on? This is of significant matter so that no end is delayed and compromised.

Related Post: Choosing The Right Camera for Professional Photography

6. What Are The Rights To The Images?

In this legal matter, license and agreement between the photographer and you establishes rights of usage of the photos. The creative property typically is maintained by the photographer. But as the client paying for the service rendered you are entitled to use the photos in ways you intend to. So, it is a major fact that you should know the channels or mediums you intend the images to go. Photographers use this information in determining the quote to offer to you before any work starts. Ultimately, the agreement needs to appease and protect both parties.

7. Are You Insured?

The photographer should be able to answer “yes” right away to this question. Injuries, damaged equipment, and other types of accidents can happen during or after the shoot. Saving yourself from an unwanted legal situation can lessen the stress that is caused by such mishaps. Other than for legalities, an insured photographer is also an assurance that you can either book for a new schedule or have your money back to hire a product photographer who can still do the shoot without incurring additional costs on your end.

8. What Do You Need To Do From My End?

The reason for this specific question is to know where you stand and start off regarding before work commences. While this seems a very basic simple question it greatly helps build a good positive repertoire with the person you are working with, in this case with a photographer. And if there’s a good start in the working relationship, the experience and results are sure to be rather smooth and best.


The photographer should ask you the right questions so that he or she gets to understand and meet your needs. This is if the photographer is seriously committed to exceeding your expectations as a client.  You also can use this information to compare your top photographer candidates to consider for the job.

At the end of the day, what you really need, are photos that will launch your brand to success. Even with a professional photographer, you should also look into the possibility of needing a company to perform product photo editing. Some photos may need to have background removal or a clipping path service. Some photo retouching services may also be needed to further enhance the photos that your photographer took. This is why with most product photography tips; it is encouraged to also find a reliable company to work on your photos.

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