YRSCommercial is all about a commercial photographer and a small supporting team - a family business. Commercial? That means we only shoot commercial work and photographs for business, media and press. As a commercial photographer business based in the West Midlands (WS12), we have developed a specialism in food, product and building interiors (plus architecture) images.
We do not shoot portraits unless they are for business use - employees & PR. So no weddings or sport photography, no family portraits that sort of thing. Only commercial images. Why is this important to our clients? We focus on one purpose. The production of images that support a sales proposition, a brand promise or commercial drive. So our 'wiring', so to speak, is all about selling products and services through pictures - not just taking a picture. We're specialists not generalists, we leave that to others.
Therefore, we work from a very strong brief, which itself explores the value proposition of the product, service or corporate asset you want photographing. From here we develop ideas on how to shoot your commission that is in line with brand, proposition and commercial direction. YRSCommercial, a commercial photographer.
What makes YRSCommercial different?
In short, we help you sell your product with pictures. As a small team, we not only have visual photography skills, we also have extensive marketing appreciation and knowledge - over 33 man years of it through senior marketing positions in Europe, the US and north Africa. It is also based upon senior roles in marketing and brand consultancy. The photographer who takes the images is a Chartered Marketer, Registered Consultant and Chartered PR practioner.
So we understand the need to convey a proposition and visualise your argument. It may sound a strange combination - marketing and photography - but it really does benefit our client base. We talk your language, understand quickly the product or service and then take this into a visual execution - a picture.
This 'commercial' approach means that we do discard many images we take - if it doesn't sell the product or service, it isn't doing the job - even if it is a great image. This critical review of all our images means, that you know we are looking to create an image that works for you and not one that looks artistic - simply looks pretty.
Two locations, two parts of the UK.
A West Midlands based business, currently our facilities let us produce a range of business and commercially needed images for product and packaging, as-well-as our specialist work for food subjects.
This means we have product specific booths for most types or shapes of product up to whitegoods size - anything larger and we shoot this one site - such as furniture, engineering items etc. The range of products shot in the studios ranges from jewellery to clothing, cosmetics to food packaging - the entire spectrum when it comes to ecommerce images.
For more speciailist product work we have benches and clamps to handle most items to premit more creative lighting. Each studio is fluid when it comes to the food prop side of the business as these can move between the studios based upon the client demand and seasonality. They also increase by studio as one region develops a style or trend against another. Moving props is a continual process, so we are never 'caught short' so to speak. You can see more from our props page.
The studios off site.
Over recent years we have found that most of our other commercial client work (beyond product), is done 'on-site' - on or in our client's premises. Thanks to a significant investment in our 'portable photography' studio environment we bring our studio to the client - this means a studio environment is maintained at all times - lighting quality assured. And for those clients who do not wish to send product to the studios, yes we can shoot product on-site - a growing trend where products are extremely valuable or where the client wishes to reduce costs of wastage.
YRSCommercial, commercial photographer.
Security at the locations.
Some of our client's products whether fine jewellry or caviar is somewhat expensive. So we have installed fire safes, CCTV and other security features, which we will not declare online! But safe to say (sorry for the pun) we try to keep all our client's products secure at all times.
We try not to talk 'gear' as it can feel at times a little nerdy! but on this page we can - the rest of the site is a nerd free zone! We have done away with the Phase One stuff and taken a huge step forward with SLR camera bodies - namely Canon 5ds units. Why? The financial equation. Few clients are happy spending thousands on a photo shoot. Large corporates in turn are now managing marketing budgets to a finite level, so to cut a long story short we have moved the gear to meet the demand and thanks to the trends in the gear,we can now achieve the same results. Namely very large, high quality images at a fraction of the costs of the past - not that we do not like medium formats like Phase 4, it's just that the world is moving in another direction and we like to step a head of it.
Also, use has changed - virtually 80% of what we shoot is for the web... 8000 or more pixel width is huge over-kill when you consider the average monitor of smart TV and as for print - we see more and more PDF - so it's always cut to 96dpi... and so it goes on!
So for large scale work we always use Canon 5Ds bodies at 50M pixels. Must admit we've found these units incredible. 50M pixels gives you images beyond most print and even backdrops for stands, so we only have to increase size marginally. Now for faster moving commissions we use Canon 1D's. They seem to change every 18 months with Canon's product lifecycle, so we have a range of them from 3's which still work fantastically and 4's which we use for video through to X..
Each studio has their own range of bodies and back up bodies, so we never have a problem with Cameras. As for lenses we only use Canon L series, although we have 'played' recently with the finer end of Sigma and found the images to be quite impressive. As for the rest of the gear - it's a range of strobe flash units and more recently a heavy investment in continuous lighting units - we like wisywig - what you see is what you get - and continuous lighting helps us do this even on a large scale.
What's left? Well that's IT - we have 6 servers managing over 30Tb of images, which are mirrored for ease of access, we shoot tethered to laptops whenever possible, so we have a few of those and only use tablets if we have to! As for software, we are wall to wall Adobe from image management to post production and actively train and re train to get the most from design products (yes we also do design work). That's the nerdy bit over now!
YRSCommercial, commercial photographer.