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ABOUT

Why the industry needs this resource:

Few industries have as much confusion, variance and lack of information as the commercial photography industry, and this website aims to try and change that.

The industry has undergone immense changes in the last 10-15 years, which has resulted in a highly competitive arena where photographers bid blindly against each other, at the mercy of the behemoth corporations that contract the agencies that pay the photographers, the critical creatives who unfortunately become the ‘little guy’.

The corporations are truly the ones with the most power, and the less information commercial photographers have as a whole, the more those corporations stand to gain.

Every company that has any experience at all hiring and working with a commercial photographer knows full well the immense value of high-quality images to their company, but the problem is, many new photographers don’t.

This has resulted is a huge pool of low-priced, inexperienced yet talented photographers that have enabled the devaluing of an image, simply because the giant corporations take advantage, and the photographers don’t know any better. Those corporations more and more often intentionally look for talented photographers who lack experience doing commercial shoots, because the corporations know they’ll save a ton of money in doing so.

All of this has made it exceedingly difficult for any level of commercial photographer to make a living at their craft, craft that often results in millions of dollars in additional revenue for their clients.

It’s time that commercial photographers take their power back, and they will do this through knowledge and communal decisions. And that knowledge starts at the bottom, with those entering the industry, who will continue to influence it for years to come.

This site can’t influence communal decisions, but it can help to educate those new to the industry, and prevent the mass advantage-taking on the part of corporations and the agencies they contract.

Whether you are new to the industry, or have been a photographer for many years but are new to the commercial photography industry, you will find the resources on this website to be of immense value in your quest for knowledge.

And if you are one of the ‘old timers’, rest assured that everything on this site aims at properly educating the ‘newbies’, so that when you are up against them in a bid, it’s a much fairer fight.

If there’s anything you don’t see here that you think would add value to the industry, please feel free to reach out.

Come join us here:

Facebook group. (It’s open to all professional photographers everywhere.)

Facebook page. (Anyone anywhere can follow.)

Who is behind it:

Jamie and client Kuma the Akita taking a break during a shoot in the Fairmont Hotel San Francisco Presidential Suite.

My name is Jamie Piper, and I’ve been a commercial animal photographer for 16 years. I am the author of all of the guides on this site. 

I’ve worked with some of the biggest brands in my niche, and have experience working with a wide variety of business types, from small local retailers to international industry giants, although most of my experience has been working with ad agencies. 

I’ve always had a passion for business, and have spent the past 10 years teaching other photographers about strategies they can employ to be more successful in their dealings with clients, setting pricing, negotiating, etc.

I’ve become incredibly frustrated at what I feel is a gross inequality in the industry- the ‘big guys’ taking advantage of the ‘little guys’ (see above), and time and time again I discover that I’m losing jobs to lesser experienced colleagues and I discover later through talking to them, that they were taken advantage of by the companies who hire them. 

This cycle has repeated itself more times than I can count. I’ve spent several years providing information and support to colleagues, in my selfish quest to try and increase my own odds at landing bids. I finally decided to take all of that information- knowledge born from experience and mass amounts of research- and share it with others like you. 

My hope is that by making this information available to photographers like you who are just getting started with commercial photography, they will be empowered to face the ‘big guys’ with confidence, awareness, and most importantly- pricing that fits the value they provide. This benefits them, this benefits me, and it benefits the industry as a whole. 

Most photographers don’t have the time or money to attend a workshop, so this is the next best option- a workshop’s amount of business knowledge for a significantly lower price. In an area of the industry that’s shrouded in mystery.

The potential benefit of the information in these guides can’t be understated. I know one photographer who landed a $5k job less than two weeks after reading the content in The Big Commercial Photography Bundle, due in large part to what she learned in the guides. I also know two others who learned they were undercharging their national clients by 75-85%! (You can bet they’ll be making more money during their next project with those clients! And they’ll both have far more solid contracts as well.)

I know far too well the stress and confusion that can come from bidding on a project, and I’m totally confident that you will feel confident doing so after absorbing the material on this website and in the guides. 

And if you have a topic you’d like me to cover in a future blog post, please don’t hesitate to reach out

Also, if you are a professional photographer, please come join The Business of Commercial Photography Facebook group. You’ll find like-minded photographers who are also wading through the murky waters of commercial photography. You should feel comfortable asking any question that you have in the group. We are all in this together. 

-Jamie