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Corporate Photography

assignments company corporation type

he pictures made for corporate photography are some of the most visible and important photographic communication pieces that can be produced by a company. Corporate photographs represent the company and its people and are used to create an image and identity for the organization to the public.

Companies place a high value on corporate photography and this type of work can generate sizable incomes for photographers who can find work with Fortune 500 companies such as Ford Motor Company, Pfizer, and Microsoft. Most corporate photography is similar to editorial photography and certainly has a location component. Photographers who work in this area must also have personal and business attitudes that, even if somewhat idiosyncratic, are consistent with the corporate officers with whom they work.

Corporate photography assignments usually come from companies’ public relations departments, their advertising agencies, or their graphic designers. Executives with titles such as advertising manager, public relations director, and director of communications—as well as those who report to them—authorize corporate photography assignments. These assignments may also come from advertising agency account executives and designers who have been assigned projects that require photographic illustrations for publications such as annual reports. Annual report photography is also a highly prized assignment This type of photography creates the visual image of a company’s executives, facilities, workers, products, and so on. Depending on the style and length of the particular annual report, the photography may take a couple of days or several weeks to complete. Numerous subjects may need to be photographed, ranging from people to products, and industrial plants to customer applications.

Other corporate photography assignments might include photographing employees on and off the job for recruitment brochures; photographing a company’s facilities and services for a capabilities brochure; or photographing just about anything related to the company, its employees, and its customers for internal and external publications. Corporate publications are distributed using traditional print methods and/or the Internet and may reach millions of viewers.

Corporate photography welcomes talented photographers who conduct business in a professional manner; however, making the right contacts to get such assignments is not a simple task. Meeting the various deadlines and delivering images that capture the philosophy of the company (or something better than was expected) are essential ingredients to success in corporate photography, as is an ability to work with all kinds of people. For this work to be considered successful, corporate pictures must create a positive impression that reflects well on the corporation.

A photographer interested in this type of work should locate someone within the corporation who assigns photography projects and make an appointment to show his or her portfolio. Ideally, the portfolio should be a powerful presentation of the photographer’s best work, with every marginal picture edited out. Because corporate photographic needs are so diverse, a substantive portfolio may be appropriate. Newcomers to the field may offer a corporation some economy or flexibility they need to pursue a particular communications task. They also may offer the corporation access to special subject matter or certain techniques. One young photographer won a major assignment to photograph the alphabet for a large corporation because he had an extensive collection of old display type.

Cosby, Bill (1937–) [next] [back] Corporate Organization - 1915–1917: World and Triangle

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