'Photo Shoot' or 'Photoshoot': What's the Difference Between the Two?

By Shanea Patterson, updated on January 4, 2023

Wondering whether to spell it ‘photo shoot’ or ‘photoshoot’? And what is the difference between the two? We’ll cover that in this article, plus teach you how to use the correct spelling of the phrase in a sentence.

The short answer is that both words mean the same thing, but ‘photo shoot’ is more common. It’s the spelling most preferred by several usage guides. However, ‘photoshoot’ can still be used both formally and informally.

‘Photo Shoot’ or ‘Photoshoot’?

As you just learned, both phrases are technically okay to use. But the most common way people spell it these days is ‘photo shoot’ with the space. So, if you want your writing to be acceptable to a larger audience, it’s best to write it with the space.

‘Photo Shoot’ or ‘Photoshoot’ – Which is Correct?

Now, if you’re wondering which is correct, the answer is both!

You can use these phrases interchangeably because they mean the same things.

They’re not exactly homophones because they’re essentially the same phrase.

Definition and Meaning of 'Photo Shoot'

Let’s break down the phrase and define each word. Then, we’ll define the phrase as a whole.

The Merriam-Webster definition of ‘photo’ is: “photograph.”

The Merriam Webster definition of ‘shoot’ is: “to eject or impel or cause to be ejected or impelled by a sudden release of tension (as of a bowstring or slingshot or by a flick of a finger),” “to drive forth or cause to be driven forth by an explosion (as of a powder charge in a firearm or of ignited fuel in a rocket),” “to drive forth or cause to be driven forth by a sudden release of gas or air,” “to propel (something, such as a ball or puck) toward a goal by striking or pushing with part of the body (such as the hand or foot) with an implement,” “to throw or cast off or out often with force,” “to cause (something, such as a gun or bow) to propel a missile,” “to utter (words or sounds) rapidly or suddenly or with force,” and “to emit (light, flame, fumes, etc.) suddenly and rapidly.”

It also means: “to send forth with suddenness or intensity,” “to discharge, dump, or empty especially by overturning, upending, or directing into a slide,” “to affect by shooting,” “to push or slide (something, such as the bolt of a door or lock) into or out of a fastening,” “to push or thrust forward: stick out,” “to put forth in growing,” “to place, send, or bring into position abruptly,” “to engage in (a sport or game or a portion of a game that involves shooting): play,” “to place or offer (a bet) on the result of casting dice,” to cause to move suddenly or swiftly forward,” and “to take a picture or series of pictures or television images of: photograph, film.”

The Merriam-Webster definition of ‘photo shoot’ is: “a photography session and especially one in which a professional photographer takes photographs of someone or something for commercial use (as in a magazine).”

How to Use ‘Photo Shoot’ and ‘Photoshoot’ in a Sentence

Now that you know what the phrase means in its entirety let’s see some examples of how to use it in a sentence.

  • My fiancée has to go do a photoshoot today. She’s a model.
  • We’re doing a photo shoot for my new line of lingerie today.
  • We have a lot of shots to get during the photo shoot today. So, let’s try to stay focused.
  • We need snacks for the photo shoot this afternoon. Can you take care of that?
  • She’s going to be modeling evening gowns at the photo shoot today.
  • I never showed up to the office photo shoot. I don’t want to be in the company brochures.

As you can see, using the phrases interchangeably in a sentence is perfectly okay.

Concluding Thoughts on ‘Photo Shoot’ and ‘Photoshoot’

To recap, we’ve learned that ‘photo shoot’ and ‘photoshoot’ mean the same thing and can be used interchangeably. But the most common way to spell the word is with the space.

If you ever need help with other confusing words, we’ve got a whole library of content that covers commonly confused words and phrases in the English language. Go check it out.

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Written By:
Shanea Patterson
Shanea Patterson is a writer based in New York and loves writing for brands big and small. She has a master's degree in professional writing from New York University and a bachelor's degree in English from Mercy College.

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