July 29, 2022
The biggest question we get asked when potential clients inquire with us is “How many images will I receive?”. While we can provide an estimate of the number of final images you receive, there are bigger and more important questions that you should ask yourself to know if a photographer is right for you.
Questions such as:
- Is the photographer’s style in line with the look I want?
- Does the photographer understand my brand and and vision for my goals?
- Will the imagery meet the purpose for which I need them?
- Will the imagery be of the highest creative quality and align with my brand?
- Based on the photographer’s portfolio, can you see yourself or your products in their imagery?
- If you are the subject of the photos, do you like how the photographer captures & poses people?
QUALITY matters so much more than quantity. Why? Because you’re spending a lot of time, money and resources on new imagery and you want to be sure that the images are useful. Choosing a photographer because they provide hundreds of images, but isn’t the style that you want will leave you with images that you may not use in the end. Where will that leave you?
Wouldn’t you rather have a set of purposeful & creative images that fully embody your brand and you love than having hundreds of images that you don’t like and end up not using? One amazing image is so much more useful than 10 images that don’t align with your vision.
So when you’re hiring a brand photographer, we encourage you to ask yourself the questions above first and foremost. From there, it’s important to understand that there are a variety of factors that influence how many final images you will receive – and can vary depending upon your brand and what is being photographed. Read the full post below to learn more.
TYPE OF BUSINESS
Is your business a service or product-based brand? What type of industry? Are the images for your website, a social media campaign, an e-commerce site or a full page ad in a magazine?
Let’s say you are a service-based business, a realtor, and you need new images of yourself (and/or your team) for your marketing materials. If you have a team of 5 people, you’ll receive a significantly higher amount of images than if you had just one person since you will need a group shot and individuals of each person. Sometimes realtors may also need smaller sub-groups photographed together too. Then, add on the same group shots and individual portraits in multiple locations and backdrops and you’ve easily doubled the amount of final images that you will receive.
A product-based business will have a similar variety of factors that will influence how many final images they may receive from a shoot. How many products need photographed – one or 100? Where will each product be photographed? On a plain background, styled with props, in an environment, as a flat lay, with models showing the product in use, in multiple locations? We must also take into consideration the time needed to setup each scene, for a stylist to place and adjust props, for wardrobe to be changed on models. A one-product shoot with a model may yield 5 images while a 100-product shoot with each product photographed in 5 different scenes will yield a much higher amount. You can see how all of these factors can dramatically change the amount of time and effort needed as well as the final number of images provided.
HOW MANY SCENES / LOCATIONS
Often, multiple scenes and/or locations are necessary to fully tell your story or communicate different concepts to your audience. It all depends on the type of business or the marketing purpose of the imagery. For social media, you need some variety so having different backgrounds or environments is key. While a brand selling products may need updated product listings all photographed on the same background – they may also need lifestyle imagery of their product being used by customers in different settings. Hospitality businesses may not only have multiple scenes to shoot at one property, but may also have multiple properties that need to be photographed. Each scene takes time to setup, light and get products or people in place so the more scenes you have the more imagery that you will receive.
LENGTH OF SHOOT / PACKAGE TYPE
More scenes, more products, more people, more props also equals more time. Our brand photography packages are based on hours so depending on all of these factors your shoot may take more or less time depending upon what you need photographed. We can help you determine how much time you need based on your imagery requirements and can match you with a package that fits your needs. We also offer custom quotes for larger-scale projects that may involve multiple locations/properties, models, styling, hair, makeup and other vendors.
Most of the time, the longer the shoot the more images you’ll receive however it all depends on what is being photographed. If you have a few products but we are creating a very styled and elaborate set for them, it may take more time per shot for setup/styling and therefore it will yield less images. With lifestyle and people that don’t require a styled set/backdrop we are more mobile and can capture more imagery and movement.
LEVEL OF STYLING / SETUP / PROPS
Many of our product based clients require small sets to be created in order to photograph their products. We may also need to add props and other decor to tell a story or communicate different aspects of the brand. While most of these scenes look effortless, the time, planning, sourcing of props, setup, styling and cleanup take a significant amount of time. The experience, eye and skill of a stylist can make it look effortless but what some clients don’t understand is that it takes time to setup each of these shots.
For example, the image above styled by Carol Jensky for a brand shoot with our client 211 to Waterloo was one flat lay that involved a lot of behind the scenes work. It started with understanding what the client wanted to show, where the image was being used, creating concepts together as a team, sourcing appropriate props to tell the story, purchasing/receiving/transporting, setup, styling on set and cleanup. When we were on set, even with pre-planning the styling can take some time to setup and can involve trying different arrangements and taking multiple shots to get it right. The pink bath salts had to be carefully placed and adjusted with tweezers. Usually a vacuum is involved to pickup stray props, dust or other debris. A soft cloth is used to remove fingerprints from glass or reflective surfaces. And that’s just setup of the products & props – often lighting and other variables need to be adjusted and it’s not just one quick shot. This is the beauty of hiring a creative team who works together and collaborates to make sure everything is perfect.
If your shoot involves multiple styled setups like the one above, you can quickly see that if we add up all the time needed for more elaborate shots, you may only get a few images from a half-day shoot. While in contrast if each of your products was photographed individually on a plain colored background without any props, we could capture a higher quantity of images/products in a half-day without the need to do any styling.
ATTENTION TO PRE-PLANNING
What makes our Brand Photography service unique is that we help our clients create concepts for their shoot by evaluating and getting to know their brand and looking at where they need imagery and what it’s purpose is. Showing up with a camera and no plan will not help our clients and we believe it’s imperative that planning, strategy and pre-concepting will not only make our clients shoots better but will also yield more usable photos.
If we don’t plan and have no concepts or no idea where and when the images will be used, we waste precious shoot time by brainstorming on the spot. We want our clients shoot time to be filled with creating images and not scrambling for props or making big picture marketing decisions. Our clients have paid us for our time and we want to use it wisely and create imagery with meaning and purpose. When we have a plan in place prior to your shoot including image concepts, a mood board, shot list and timeline to follow we can create better quality imagery as well as complete what was planned on our shot list, and therefore quantity.
We also believe that if our clients are prepared and our shoot plan communicated to all parties, it helps everyone stay on schedule, the appropriate props are on hand, models arrive on time and no detail is missed. This preparation and participation of everyone involved can affect quantity of final images if anything goes awry, but we think that proper planning will ensure not only the quantity of images you receive but also the quality and representation of your brand.
The Brand Bottega is different because we include creative direction and content planning with each and every brand photography shoot. If you don’t know what type of images you need or don’t have the creative energy (or time) to plan your shoot, we would love to work with you and design an amazing shoot that reflects your brand and meets your needs for visual imagery. In the end, QUALITY matters over QUANTITY. Quality images will be used over and over again. But if you have images that don’t reflect your brand or that you feel you can’t use, it doesn’t matter that you received 100’s of images because you can’t use them. So when choosing a brand photographer, look for someone who gets to know you, helps you create concepts and is invested in creating quality images that reflect who you are.
If you are a busy entrepreneur who needs new imagery but wants someone else to come up with concepts and plan your shoot reach out to us today to schedule a consult and learn more about our packages. Shoots can take up a lot of time and energy and we are here to help take the burden off of you to concept & plan by using our creativity. We can’t wait to get to know your brand and create imagery that elevates your online presence and marketing materials. Click the button below to schedule your complimentary consult.