What to Expect at a Model Photoshoot
5 Comments • Uncategorized • By Melissa
A model photoshoot can be an exciting but often stressful experience, particularly if you have never been to one before.
Here, we take a comprehensive so you know exactly what to expect at a professional model photoshoot.
Types of Model Photoshoots
There are many different types of modelling photoshoots. Fashion photography is seen as a creative art form. Types of photoshoots depend on the style of modelling (for example, high fashion or commercial); other factors include the brand, audience, theme, time of year, location and purpose for the shoot.
Types of photoshoots include:
– Wedding photoshoots
– Fashion photoshoots
– Commercial models
– Family portraits
– Boudoir/lingerie photoshoots
– Themed photoshoots
– Child photoshoots (e.g. school photo)
– Maternity/baby bump photoshoots
– Pet photoshoots
How Long Do Photoshoots Last?
Shoots may appear glamorous but they are hard work. A model may find themselves having to wait around for hours. A lot of time can be spent on your feet, or trying to nail one specific shot that the photographer wants to grab. Hours can also be spent in the make-up/hairdressers chair while they decorate you to create their vision. You will also need to be fitted for both shoes and clothes beforehand.
Depending on the agency, brand and the models/photographers demand, a photoshoot can take anywhere from a few hours to several days. Editorial shoots in particular can take a while because they are a creative process. Usually, though, you can expect to be there for a few hours – this includes getting hair styled by a hairdresser and make-up applied by a professional makeup artist, getting outfits on, and posing in front of the camera.
Where Do Photoshoots Take Place?
Many photoshoots take place in a proper studio, with proper backdrops and lighting. Other photo shoots take place “on-site”; this means they could take place anywhere. Photoshoots have taken place on beaches, in the street, in the forest, in exotic villas, on snowy mountains… it all depends on the theme, product and reason for the shoot.
Studio-based photo shoots take place at the agency or brand locations. These are usually located in major cities such as London, Manchester or Edinburgh.
What is a Photoshoot “Concept?”
Some photo shoots have something called a “concept“. This is the theme or story behind the photoshoot. Editorials have a concept because they are a series of photos that are trying to tell the viewer a particular story.
The concept is decided before the model is even hired, so you will be told exactly what is expected of you before you even turn up at the studio. You may even be told during the interview process.
How to Prepare for a Photoshoot
You will be told well in advance the time and place that the photoshoot will take place. You will also be sent a brief that will contain any key information about the specific shoot; for example, you may be asked to wear specific clothing or come with just-washed hair, or you may have to wear a strapless bra or bring heels. You may be asked to shave your underarms or bring certain jewellery; whatever you’re told, ensure you do it beforehand or you could risk losing the job.
You’ll be sent a contract confirming your payment and other relevant information, which you will have to sign beforehand.
Make sure you know exactly where you are going and give yourself plenty of time for delays and getting lost. It’s always better to arrive early when possible; time is money, and time spent waiting for a model will put a black mark on your records. It may put them off hiring you again in the future.
How to Pose at a Photoshoot
You should always practice how you want the shoot to go beforehand and think about the poses you want to try. You’ll receive the brief and any relevant photoshoot information well in advance, so you’ll have plenty of time to think about model poses that the photographer will like. Each body part matters, even those you barely think about in every day like your elbows, knees and ankles.
Practice in front of a mirror or try getting a friend to take photos of you. The more you practice, the more you will feel comfortable and confident on the day. In particular, practice posing from your face right down to your toes in case they want a full-length shot, and practice beauty shots (up-close face shots) too. Action shots are also very useful to master.
You need to listen closely to the direction given to you by the people on set. They will try to give you advice to get the best shot; if you listen, you will impress them and speed up the end process. Remember that they likely have years of expertise; be grateful and use it as an opportunity to gain feedback and learn as much as you can.
It’s a good idea to follow your favourite models on Instagram as they regularly share shoot photos that could inspire you.
If you’re completely new to modelling, it’s a good idea to hire a photographer to get some real experience of a proper photoshoot. This will also give you the opportunity to purchase your favourite photos which can later be included in your modelling portfolio.
Don’t forget to pay attention to your facial expressions, too. These might seem minor when compared to body poses, but the face is just as important and you need to be able to portray any emotion required. Acting lessons can really help if you struggle with this.
After the Shoot
You probably won’t get a chance to look at the end photos because it isn’t your decision which photos get chosen. You will get the chance to change back into your regular clothing, and you may have a brief chat afterwards about copyright.
If you plan to use any photos from the shoot in your own social media or self-marketing tools, ALWAYS ask the permission of the photographer.