Both Fashion Photography and Commercial Photography belongs to a category of professional photography known as Advertising Photography but they are different from each other as end results aimed. The commercial photography is aimed at selling product while Fashion Photography aims to sells a lifestyle.
Difference between Commercial Photography and Fashion Photography
Commercial photography is done to primarily sells a product or set of products. Therefore, the emphasis of the entire photo shoot is on the product involved. As a result the the lighting, styling, and the background ambiance depolarized are usually light and plain in outlook.
Typically such photography involves catalog shooting for various products where models are made to stand in front of a white or plain white background with very natural looking make-up.
In contrast to the Commercial Photography where emphasis lies on products, the Fashion Photography focuses on the mood and styling of the image. The products involved at best project like accessory that helps conveying a certain lifestyle.
As a result, backgrounds gets a bit flashy and dramatic in Fashion Photography and the models gets styled in very thick and heavy eyeliners, dramatic eye shadows, and stylish hairstyle.
Typically, Fashion Photographers tend to indulge in a wide array of lighting and lighting accessories often involving 10 or more lights to get the dramatic look they desire.