As a fashion photographer my job is to get the most out of my available resources, that means lighting, props, and yes models too. Some people can be more difficult than others, but many different reasons . Some more experienced than others. Today, I’d like to focus on those who are not as experienced, and I’m going to share some tips on how to achieve great photos regardless.
Communication and preparation should be #1 on the list A.L.W.A.Y.S. Everything that’s about to be done needs to be communicated CLEARLY, and in writing with everyone involved. I have checklist after checklist where I include a very specific picture of what the goal will be, every step of the way, in plain simple English (or Spanish). When I work everyone is aware of their role and how to perform it. I even make sure they sign off on it.
Make them feel comfortable: Look, I imagine being a model is not as easy as people think it is, there are a lot of high expectations. Many people, myself included, have a hard time being in front of the camera, we become self-conscious of details no one cares about, it is a vulnerable state to be.
Always compliment your model, and comment on how great of a job they’re doing, and when something is not working out, phrase it in ways that won’t throw them off, like: “Awesome, I love it! Now let’s try something else..” and move on. Oh… Almost forgot, I’ve gotten a lot of comments from models I’ve worked with on how some photographers are in because they want to be around hot chicks, please do not be creepy, be professional, and leave people alone.
Build rapport: For those who dont know it is a close and harmonious relationship in which the people or groups concerned understand each other's feelings or ideas and communicate well. According to google. Talk about life, find common interests, goals, hopes, dreams, doggos and kittens.
Be aware of how they’re feeling: Do they need a break? is it hot and could use some water? What about make up, hair and outfit? Especially when you don’t have a team to back you up. How’s the background, any distractions?
Play some music: From the very beginning, I ask about favorite music/band/or singer and make a playlist based on that. Go as far as getting a portable bluetooth speaker.
Have a posing guide handy: You should always know what to do next, and how to pose your subject, sometimes I even break a hip teaching others how they should be posing, but also have some visual aid to help them achieve the look you’re looking for. I have a few of them on Pinterest and Instagram.
Finally: Slowdown, do not rush them, She/he is part of your team, you both are building something amazing together, communicate that, make them feel proud.
If you like what you just read, please do not forget to share it with someone who could use this information, also find me on instagram @reneferret