What do you look for when you look for a branding photographer?
I was scrolling the other day, a forum from across the globe, I was searching for information on a particular subject and found someone with excellent writing and information. I instantly wanted to read more from them. So I clicked over to their website. Then it hit me, like a tonne of bricks. This incredibly beautiful photograph. The background was a familiar colour and style (it’s a studio backdrop), the lighting was predicatably soft loop from the side with shadows on half of their face, their pose was the same as so many I’d seen before.
In an instant I recognised the photographer and I have already forgotten the subject’s name and brand.
Now this photographer is really good, their work is consistent and great to look at and I’ve always loved their work. However they never take on their client’s style or branding. The client may wear their brand coloured clothes, or hold their book or product; but the background is always the same, the lighting never changes and they use the same predictable series of poses. The result, a clientele with almost identical images.
This is one of the pitfalls of shooting in a studio as I discuss in this blog post:
There are similar stories you could read or hear about in graphic design too. So many clients of one designer may have very similar logos, similar colour palettes, the same website layout. A great designer listens to their client’s brand story and establishes an aesthetic that works for that brand, not just something they think looks pretty. Good brand photography is no different.
As a branding photographer my primary focus is to capture images that effectively communicate and represent my superstar clients’ brands. This means that I choose not to impose my own distinct style onto the images, as this can detract from the message my client is trying to convey. Instead, I always focus on highlighting the key elements of your brand and strive to create images that align with your unique branding guidelines and aesthetic.
Having a distinct style can be a valuable asset for a photographer in many other settings (weddings, babies, families), but in the context of branding photography, it is important for the photographer to be able to adapt their approach and style to meet the specific needs and goals of their clients. This might involve using different lighting techniques, compositions, or post-processing styles depending on the client’s brand and the message they are trying to convey. Sticking to one distinct style of photography means that every client will end up with images that look the same. One of the two most important parts of your online brand is your visuals (the other is your language) and photographs form at least 50% of your visuals. If they convey MY brand and not yours, then this is not good for your brand recognition.
Ultimately, my job as a branding photographer is to help you effectively communicate YOUR brand (not mine) through visually striking and impactful images. To do this effectively, I capture your brand, your values, your processes and your story in a way that highlights YOUR brand, rather than imposing my favoured style onto your images. This is why no two Oh Tilly sessions are alike.
With Oh Tilly Brand Photography the lead up and preparation for your session is designed to ensure your own unique brand story is uncovered and portrayed perfectly.
A wedding and family photographer can struggle to really separate their own artistic preferences and styles from their work, which is wonderful for weddings and families. These are personal types of photography that are emotional in nature and the decision to hire your wedding or family photographer is a deeply personal and emotional choice. Business photography is not about what you like. It’s about conveying your message to your audience and increasing brand recognition and awareness for YOUR brand. Brands need to stand out from other brands!
Serious business decisions need to be made based on smart business. Choosing a brand photographer needs to be about finding the photographer who captures YOUR story and the story of their other clients in a unique way every single time. Capturing YOUR unique aesthetic, your brand messages and stories and not imposing their own brand on yours.
As a specialist brand photographer this is my sole focus. Showcasing YOU and YOUR BRAND for your audience.