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Photographer, Commercial Salary

Commercial Photographers in the United States can expect wages of $47K annually on average. Experience level is the biggest factor affecting pay for this group, followed by geography. Job satisfaction for Commercial Photographers is high. Although more than half have medical coverage and more than half have dental coverage, just under one in three claim no health benefits at all. Male Commercial Photographers who responded to the survey are more common than women; more than half (62 percent) are men. This report is based on answers to PayScale's salary questionnaire.
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$29,940 - $67,555
(Median)
$30K
$47K
$68K
MEDIAN: $46,668
10%
50%
90%

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$10.28 - $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$23K$46K$69K
Salary
$29,940 - $67,555  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $5,000  
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).
)
$25,449 - $68,640  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 16 May 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 181
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
$10.28 - $31.79  
   
Overtime
$11.74 - $73.79  
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 - $5,000  
   
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).
)
$25,449 - $68,640  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 16 May 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.

Photographer, Commercial Job Listings

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Popular Skills for Photographer, Commercial


Commercial Photographers note just a narrow range of job skills. Those who have experience with Product Photography, Adobe Photoshop, and Editing can expect to be compensated well for these skills. Skills that pay less than market rate include Editing. Those familiar with Adobe Photoshop also tend to know Editing.

Pay by Experience Level for Photographer, Commercial

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


In general, experience and pay appear to be strongly linked; those with more experience usually bring in higher incomes. The average beginner in this position makes around $34K, but folks who have been around for five to 10 years see a markedly higher median salary of $45K. Commercial Photographers with one to two decades of relevant experience report an average salary of approximately $51K. Commercial Photographers who have acquired more than 20 years of relevant experience earn significantly more than folks with fewer years on their resumes; the average income in this veteran group is $59K.

Pay Difference by Location


Surpassing the national average by 34 percent, Commercial Photographers in Chicago receive some of the highest pay in the country. Commercial Photographers will also find cushy salaries in New York (+21 percent) and Seattle (+6 percent). The lowest-paying market is Los Angeles, which sits 1 percent below 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 4%

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 60 votes.

Gender

Female
38 %
Male
62 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
2%
1-4 years
37%
5-9 years
22%
10-19 years
24%
20 years or more
16%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 67% dental benefits Dental: 55%
vision benefits Vision: 43% employee benefits None: 28%
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