Commercial Photography: Insurance Claims

Insurance claims photographs might not be the first thing that you think about when you are considering a career in commercial photography, but it can be a varied and very lucrative market for those who are prepared to take the pictures. Insurance claims photographers require people skills and ease of manner which are not necessarily required by others in the commercial photography field: products do not have feelings, but those making insurance claims might be upset, in pain and even depressed and tearful. A skilled photographer needs to take a number of things into consideration before branching out into insurance claims photographing as another string to their commercial photography bow.

Step 1 - Advertise your Expertise

Clients looking for a photographer to take pictures of their experience will often take names from phone books, online advertisements and recommendations from friends. If you are looking to extend your commercial photography business into the field of insurance claims, it will probably pay to advertise. If you already use advertisements to promote your business, then adding an extra line will do. If you are starting from scratch, make sure that your advertisement clearly states that you are interested in taking photos for insurance claims.

Step 2 - Get a Range of Work

The subjects of insurance claims photography can vary. This may include:

  • Damage inflicted on a car or vehicle
  • Poor construction work inside a house
  • Damage to buildings caused by storms or floods
  • Damage or vandalism to other structures
  • Injuries or other damage caused to humans or animals

When you are first starting out in injury claims commercial photography, take a broad spectrum of all of these jobs. You may find, for example, that while you don't like taking pictures of broken bones, you have a knack for shooting photographs of damaged cars.

Step 3 - Have a Heart

If you do decide to start taking pictures of insurance claims, you may well end up taking a number of pictures of people with serious, even life-changing injuries. You will need to be especially sensitive and aware of their needs. Someone who has been crippled in a car accident, for example, may need assistance in moving, and will also require understanding. Clients will often expect to talk to the photographer about the circumstances of their injury, and you will probably need details on where certain injuries are, so you can photograph them easily. Listen with patience to your client.

Step 4 - Do the Job Well

When you are taking insurance claims commercial photography, you will need to take a series of similar shots of the injury or damage. The more shots you have of the area, in plain and simple framing, and ensuring that the full extent of the damage is captured several times, then the more likely you are to have fulfilled the requirements of your brief. Be sure that the damage is pictured from as many sides as possible, and that you have at least three shots where the damage is shown in proportion to something else, such as the car wheel, a nearby tree, or a table or book.

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