In the following section, we will talk about the core difference between these two genres of photography. Both of them have different aspects when it comes to budget, goal, client, and so on. Let’s talk about these in detail.
Note: we will talk about editorial images first and then commercial photography.
The budget for the editorial images is a lot lower than its counterpart. People don’t have to use any model or property release, so it costs a lot lower. Plus, the photographers get a lower per-hour payout as well. As the equipment used is lower, the budget stays in the lower portion.
For commercial photography, the budget is significantly higher. Most of the time, the budget for commercial projects is high-end. As these kinds of projects need high-end skills, the photographer’s payout is bigger than editorial photography. We have a details guide on product photography costs, you can check if your budget is tight and don’t wanna waste your valuable money.
The goal of editorial photography is to narrate a story or complement the texts. Editorial images are created only for magazine or publication readers. On the other hand, publishers can use it to depict or communicate a story or idea.
On the other hand, commercial photography’s goal is to advertise any product or brand’s message. The main audience for any commercial photos is the customers of a specific corporation. We try to communicate the key message about the product abiding by the branding guidelines.
Usage duration of the editorial images is short, and most of the time gets used only once. For example, the image might only get used on a specific publication page. Most likely, the same image would not get used a second time unless the publication mentions the same topic.
Commercial photographs have a higher usage duration compared to editorial ones. Almost all commercial photos get used multiple times across multiple advertising platforms. We get to see several years of usage for a single commercial photo.
When you take editorial photos, you get to place them in your portfolio. Because almost every editorial project lets you place the images. Editorial photos don’t break any rules when placed on the portfolio.
On the other hand, commercial photography projects don’t let photographers have it on their portfolios. Brands prefer to maintain privacy when it comes to commercial projects as well. But a small portion of the commercial projects offers permission to have it on a photographer’s portfolio.