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Outline of duties: Still photographer


The job of the still photographer is a qualification in its own right. The most important task is the production of photos needed for the utilisation, presentation and marketing of a cinematographic work by distributing companies, TV stations and streaming services in the form of printed publications or online media. The stills are supposed to communicate the visual appeal, the stars, the atmosphere, the locations, as well as any action situations, special effects, costumes, dcor, and make-up of the film. The artistic achievement in the production of the stills consists in summarising as many of the mentioned aspects as possible in as few as possible striking and emotionally highly effective photographic compositions. The creation of the stills is a creative process during which a specific visual language appropriate for the cinematographic work is developed and implemented. To achieve this, it is essential to recognise suitable scenes of the film / actors or actresses and constellations of actors / locations / sets. In order to be more striking, deviations from the camera perspective are possible, without contradicting the basic nature of the cinematographic work. Stills photography translates selected key scenes from their cinematic temporal course into powerful still visual compositions and snap-shots. This leads to a concentration of the action into a small number of images.
The stills raise the curiosity of the observer without giving away the solution.

Duties of the still photographer





During a film production, additional visual material is often required: portraits, images for posters, key visuals (unique selling point), photos of props, that may be taken outside the film set / lit scenery. This is an additional area of activity for the still photographer if requested by the contracting party. It requires an independent conception and a separate payment appropriate to the scope of work and usage. If more extensive editing (retouching / montage etc.) is necessary or desired, an agreement has to be reached regarding the required effort-related payment.

BVK, December 2017