Five Steps to Becoming a Commercial Photographer

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The road to becoming a successful commercial photographer is one that does not require that many steps when compared to many other professions. You do not need a college degree or a certificate from a trade school. In fact, formal education is not a requirement at all, although it can help you broaden your experience.

Here are five steps that you will need to take to become a commercial or professional photographer, so you can take the product shot for small and big companies.

Gain Experience

Regardless of which path you select all photographers must start gaining experience in the profession from somewhere. Most photographers start with their own camera and equipment, taking photos and learning more about the basics of lighting, composition, and presentation. Once you understand the basics, the next step is entering the commercial world. Here, many will start as an assistant which mean taking direction from the professional and learning the basics of this form of photography.

Buy Camera & Equipment

When you are learning about commercial photography in general, you should be purchasing your own equipment. This means obtaining a professional-level camera, lighting kit, and the basic equipment needed to take photographs at a high level. All professional photographers must purchase their own equipment at some point, so you might as well start now. The good news is that your work will hopefully pay for your investment.

Create a Portfolio

The most important part is creating a portfolio that demonstrates your skills as a photographer. The portfolio consists of a series of photographs that demonstrate your talents in the field using the camera and equipment that you own. This is your calling card and the most important reason why companies will be willing to hire your services, so be sure you create an excellent portfolio that consists of different products and other commercially-related subjects.


While all professional photographers have experience in different fields, it pays to specialize in one so that you can start building your business. From product photography to portraits, weddings, graduations, covers for music, books, and other publications, and so on, specializing in a field provides you with an identity that businesses and organizations will seek out for your services.


When you start getting involved in the commercial aspect of photography, you will meet other photographers, business owners, marketers, and the like. These are the people you will be working with as a professional. So, get to know and understand what they do and keep them as a contact reference so you can have a place to start when expanding your line of work.

Becoming a commercial photographer will take a little time, but if you are good, persistent, and keep your overhead low you can make it in the field. This is because the demand for this type of photography, whether it's for advertising or creating the perfect product shot is growing day by day. So, by following the steps, you stand an excellent chance of entering the professional world of photography and earning a good living.

Our 20+ years of commercial photography experience ensures you great quality photography at a reasonable price. For more details visit our website @

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