Find commercial photography studios in London
So you want to produce eye-catching product images that stand out from the competition - and ultimately make sales? Whether you’re shooting close-up details for an eCommerce business or a lifestyle scene for a magazine, you’ll need beautifully lit and consistent quality photos or moving images. London has plenty of commercial photography studios that are perfect for the task.
Here at Tutti, we can guide you through finding the perfect London commercial photography studio for your needs and your budget.
For more information on how to plan your photoshoot for a seamless outcome, check out our detailed how-to guide further down the page.
Why hire a commercial photography studio in London?
Hiring a photo studio will give you the best chance of shooting amazing product imagery by using a quality lighting setup and an array of backgrounds. It will help you simplify the planning process as commercial studios generally include photography equipment and backdrops so you don’t need to source them yourself, and you can also often hire a photographer or photography assistant through the studio.
Commercial photography studios can be found in every part of London, so you can find a convenient location whether you’re based North, South, East or West.
How to plan for your photoshoot before you hire a product photo studio in London
Choose a background to suit your product
In all commercial shoots, the product is the main focus, therefore you want to let your subject define your scene. Start by taking a long, hard look at the product. Consider its material, shape, colour, and size, and choose a background complementing these features.
If you want your product to jump out of the image you need to be very selective about the style and colour of your background. Backgrounds that are too busy will swallow up the product instead.
This is why an infinity cove studio, with its white coloured background and lack of angles, is so popular for commercial shoots because products appear to float as if placed on plain white paper.
Select your lighting
You have the choice of shooting in natural light (sunlight) or artificial light. Fortunately, in London, you have access to daylight studios with an abundance of natural light, and blackout studios for full lighting control, while some studios offer both as a single lighting setup might not work for every product.
You may prefer using natural light, for example, when the product is supposed to be used outside, when the product is shot with a person (as people tend to look better in natural light), and when you're trying to emphasise the product's surroundings, rather than specific attributes of the product.
Artificial light creates a smaller but more focused light surface. You may want to choose this type of light when there are physical details on the product that need highlighting.
Establish your budget
Knowing how much money you have to spend will decide whether you book a no frills basic studio space or you can splurge on a fancier location with full production services. You will save a lot of time by managing your expectations and narrowing down your search.
Remember when deciding on your budget, not only does it need to cover the basic fee for commercial studio hire in London, but you’ll also need to factor in additional costs like backdrops and props, additional help e.g. a photography assistant, rates for going overtime, paid parking costs, and extra equipment rental.
Pick a location
Will you need to drive to the shoot? And, if so, does the studio come with a dedicated parking space? A photo studio in central London may not be the right choice once you consider potential parking and traffic problems, but there are other studios to hire in London’s zones 2-4.
If you’ll be working with other team members then it’s a good idea to ensure there are public transport options such as nearby tube stations, and consider whether these will be available if you have an early start or late finish. You also might want to check out the local amenities for food and coffee options during your breaks.
Choose the best equipment for your shoot
Firstly to ensure consistency of height and angles across different products, you'll need to use a tripod.
Then to highlight the product details you’ll need to ensure your lighting is just right. If your products are highly reflective, you’ll want the option to control where the reflections hit or bounce them away using softboxes, bounce cards, or umbrellas for larger subjects.
Filling the set with props related to your product can create a professional and stunning shot. Just don’t clutter your scene with too many props, as you want to ensure the eye is still drawn to your main subject.
Another option for a simple yet eye catching three-dimensional perspective is to use rope or wire to hang your products on. When you edit it out in post-production your product will appear to float.
Checklist for hiring a London commercial photography studio
Do you require a parking space? Using Tutti’s advanced search tool you can filter the studios by free or paid parking to ensure you will have a carpark space available. Each listing also shows you the local transport options including the closest tube lines and bus routes.
What props do you need? Some photo studio hire fees include props and it’s a good idea to check whether you can move these existing props around to use them in your shoot.
Do you need to keep food cool? If your shoot includes meltable foods, you’ll need to check that the studio is temperature controlled to avoid food products becoming too hot or cold. You can use Tutti’s advanced search tool to filter on one or more of these options.
What lighting equipment do you need? Often basic lighting equipment like umbrellas and softboxes are included in the hire fee but if lights are chargeable, you’ll want to check how much they will cost so you can factor this into your budget.
How much space will you require? This will depend on how large your team is. Make sure there is a break area and a kitchen/refreshment making facilities available for them.
What are your background options? Once you’ve decided on the style and colour themes for your shoot, you’ll need to ensure there is a good variety of background textures and coloured backdrops available at the photo studio to suit.
What are your power requirements? Under general information on each studio page listing you can check whether single or three phase power is available.