Photographer, Commercial Salary

Average Commercial Photographers in the United States make around $47K annually. Experience level is the biggest factor affecting pay for this group, followed by geography. Most people who answered the questionnaire are men; 61 percent of Commercial Photographers are male. Although just under a third lack health benefits of any kind, more than half do enjoy medical insurance, and the larger part get dental coverage, too. Most workers in this position report high levels of job satisfaction. The information for this rundown comes from respondents who completed PayScale's salary questionnaire.
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$30,024 - $67,835
(Median)
$30K
$47K
$68K
MEDIAN: $46,875
10%
50%
90%

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$10.17 - $31.79
(Median)
$10
$16
$32
MEDIAN: $16.00
10%
50%
90%

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National Salary Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$24K$48K$72K
Salary
$30,024 - $67,835  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $5,025  
Profit Sharing
$1,100 - $2,250  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$25,174 - $69,155  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 2 Jul 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 177
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$25$50$75
Hourly Rate
$10.17 - $31.79  
   
Overtime
$11.84 - $73.60  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$50K$100K$150K
Bonus
$0.00 - $5,025  
   
Profit Sharing
$1,100 - $2,250  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$25,174 - $69,155  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 2 Jul 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 120
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Job Description for Photographer, Commercial

The job of a commercial photographer is to photograph and document images which are often used in his/her company's promotional/advertising campaigns; these photographs may also be used in magazines, editorials, billboards, television commercials, and more. Aside from taking pictures for commercial use, these photographers may also be required to manipulate these images using computer software to achieve the company's desired feel and appearance.

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Photographer, Commercial Tasks

  • Review photographs and select the most suitable for the client.
  • Edit and deliver photos, providing metadata and context as necessary.
  • Photograph designated subjects, adjusting composition, and camera settings for optimal end result.
  • Schedule photo shoots, test equipment, and interpret client requests.

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Popular Skills for Photographer, Commercial


Just a handful of professional skills are reported by Commercial Photographers who took the survey. Those who have experience with Product Photography, Adobe Photoshop, and Editing can expect to be compensated well for these skills. Skills that are correlated to lower pay, on the other hand, include Editing. Those educated in Adobe Photoshop tend to be well versed in Editing.

Pay by Experience Level for Photographer, Commercial

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.


Experience is an important factor influencing the compensation of Commercial Photographers. Respondents with less than five years' experience take home $34K on average. In contrast, those who have been around for five to 10 years earn a noticeably higher average of $45K. Commercial Photographers with one to two decades of relevant experience report an average salary of approximately $51K. Survey participants who have worked for more than two decades report bringing in $60K on average.

Pay Difference by Location


Chicago is home to an above-average pay rate for Commercial Photographers, 34 percent higher than the national average. Commercial Photographers will also find cushy salaries in New York (+21 percent). Seattle is the lowest-paying area, 3 percent south of the national average.

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Experience Affects Photographer, Commercial Salaries




National Average
$41,000


Skills That Affect Photographer, Commercial Salaries


Adobe Photoshop
0%

National Average
$41,000

Editing
up arrow 3%

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 58 votes.

Gender

Female
39 %
Male
61 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
2%
1-4 years
38%
5-9 years
22%
10-19 years
24%
20 years or more
14%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 66% dental benefits Dental: 56%
vision benefits Vision: 44% employee benefits None: 29%
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