What photographers expect when you’re on a shoot!

Kristina Schapova August 20, 2014 1

Editorial Tips

So, it’s one thing to go from a classroom where your teacher is teaching you how to move, what to do with your face, legs, arms or what things like a soft-box are?… to being a freelancer and learning all of this on your own!

We wanted to clear up what some models tend to think, which is: ‘the photographer will guide me throughout the shoot so I’ll be fine!’. In an ideal world yes, but unfortunately it’s not always the case!

When you go to a shoot, whether it is a job your agency has booked or one you organised yourself as a freelance model, you need to bring it! Yep, you heard us! Bring it! This means… BRING YOUR:

  1. Attitude
  2. Correct outfits and undergarments
  3. Have no expectations that you will be helped along the way
  4. Keep moving
  5. Communicate

1. Attitude: as a model, you need to remember your creatives (photographer, hair stylist, fashion stylist, makeup artist etc) all talk to each other (yes, it’s a small world in this industry! Even in large cities like Melbourne and Sydney!). So put away any ‘diva attitude’! We can guarantee that those creatives will not want to work with you again (and they will warn others of your attitude if they hear someone is thinking of hiring you – their time is precious and they do not want to waste it on someone who will be a diva on set). If you are signed,  the agent expects the creatives to give them feedback (think of these shoots as little tests your agency sets up for you when you are new to the family). You want to go in with a big, bright, smile and with your ‘can do’ attitude’. Be helpful! Offer to help with anything you can, even if it’s making them a coffee whilst they setup (you will be surprised how much these things can make an impact on if they like you or not). And if they like you, ‘horrray’, this means they will re-use you or suggest you to others! MORE WORK!

2. Correct outfits and undergarments: Make sure you bring your model kit! When we say bring some outfits this means things like:

White and nude coloured underwear and bras (and strapless bras).
White, black and nude heels / guys: clean formal, semi casual shoes
Touchup makeup
And ANYTHING they put in the brief (if they don’t give you one, ask what they want!).
3. Have no expectations you will be helped along the way: Every photographer is different! One photographer will have an image of what they want you to do in their head and grab every finger, arm and foot into place..Others will say nothing and let you move on your own. Some may talk to you and tell you what they envision. There are many different personalities and each of them have different expectations of the model. So do not expect anything!

As a model you will have to develop your own style of shooting. When you go in, just be confident and friendly!

4. Keep moving: so what happens if you get a photographer that gives you nothing? What are you going to do? Do homework on YOURSELF! Learn what your flaws are and learn how to hide them (if you have big hands as a female and you are doing a beauty shoot you can do things like gently curl your fingers and only show the side of the hand to make it appear smaller). Practice in front of a full length mirror and look at how your body moves, play around with facial expressions and look at fashion magazines to get inspiration. The aim is to understand what a ‘good pose’ is and take what you have learnt to the shoot! Never stand there with a blank face! Play around, be silly and just move! Some of the best shots are captured when you’re relaxed and having fun!

Have a look at some of the fun behind the scenes of how our models moved for our clients shoot.


5. Communicate: we’d like to think this one is pretty self explanatory BUT if in doubt…ASK, ASK, ASK! There is nothing worst then giving a photographer the impression you are not listening (when in fact you simply don’t understand what he/she is asking you to do). This can make the photographer frustrated and it will make the shoot harder for you!


FEMALES: Try the uneven shoulder, one hand higher, bent out leg:

Example images from ASOS.com.au

female 2   female 3 femlae 5

MALES: Try the uneven shoulder, one hand higher (using pockets or jacket), bent out leg / legs square on (feet pointing forwards not out.. we call this ‘duck feet’ and it’s not very attractive!):

Example images from ASOS.com.au

male 4 male 7male 3


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