Advertising & Commercial

Advertising & Commercial

In this major area of study, students learn to create unique, high-impact studio images for the advertising and commercial industry. Through the advanced study of lighting and design, students learn the art of photographing products, food, still life and people in the studio. Patience and acute attention to detail are emphasized throughout this program as students design contemporary sets that can take several hours or even an entire day to photograph. Students develop a thorough understanding of all elements of the commercial shoot, from developing a concept, layout and design to establishing an efficient workflow for image capture, processing and output. Learning to work with art directors and clients, creatively solve problems on a photo shoot and effectively market work are important components of this program and essential for success in the advertising and commercial photography industry.

Advertising & Commercial Courses

Advertising I: Technical Skills of Light and Design | 5 units

In this course, students are immersed in the studio, mastering digital capture equipment and an extensive array of professional studio lighting. Through lectures, demonstrations and individual in-class shooting, students explore a wide range of subjects and learn to overcome common challenges like photographing glass and other reflective objects. Weekly assignments encourage students to develop unique concepts and well-designed layouts for their photo shoots. Throughout this course, pre-planning and creative problem solving are emphasized.

Advertising II: Real World Commercial | 5 units

As students continue to advance both technically and creatively in the studio, they develop a deep understanding of the professional world of advertising and commercial photography. During this term, students gain a solid understanding of their role, as well as the roles of others involved in a commercial photo shoot—such as clients, art directors, creative directors and prop stylists. Weekly assignments explore more complex elements and more intricate set design. Creative tricks and special effects are introduced to help students bring their work to an advanced level. Throughout this course, students are encouraged to continue pushing their creativity and develop a signature style for their long-term portfolio projects.

Advertising III: Creating the Cohesive Portfolio | 5 units

This term is devoted to the continued development and execution of each student’s unique style in the creation of their professional advertising and commercial portfolios. Classes discuss trends in the field and identify traditional and emerging markets. There is a continued emphasis on the creation of dynamic images and the professional business practices necessary for success. Weekly lectures continue to address issues like presentation, pricing and marketing, ultimately providing a broad and thorough understanding of the business elements within advertising and commercial photography.

Faculty Spotlight

Bruno Debas

After completing his photographic studies at NESOP in 1984 with a concentration in advertising photography, Bruno Debas returned to his home in Paris, France, where he began his professional career assisting for and studying with some of the city’s top working fashion, lifestyle and car photographers. Upon his return to the United States, Bruno launched his commercial photography studio and has served many national and international clients in the field of banking, healthcare and education. A passionate photographer and filmmaker, Bruno constantly seeks to learn and broaden the scope of his work both artistically and commercially. To see Bruno's work, go to: