Have you ever wondered how to have the perfect photo shoot? Well, you're in luck because at Lotus Boutique we enjoy photo shoots all the time! Below you will find a list of our top 11 ways to nail your next shoot. From prep-work to cleaning up, we'll make sure your next shoot is FLAWLESS! Keep reading if you want to learn all of the nitty gritty details on how to have the perfect photo shoot! Okay... so you see that picture above? The disastrous mess of clothes we named #HurricaneFashion? THAT was from our first lookbook for Spring of 2014, and good grief it was a mess to clean up! We have come A LONG WAY when it comes to staying organized and on time during our photo shoots, and we all got together and named off the steps it takes to have an awesome photo shoot! For starters, I would like to congratulate you for researching how to have the perfect photo shoot because this is already setting you apart from any competition you may have. You are smart enough to know that by ensuring you know every detail of how to have the perfect photo shoot, you will skip all of the common mistakes beginners make! Again, congratulations to you! You are well on your way to learning the details on How to Have the Perfect Photo Shoot with these 11 Top Tips! Now, let's go!
1. Choose your theme:One of the most important aspects on how to have the perfect photo shoot is having a theme to frame your shoot around. Consider these questions before jumping into a photo shoot:
- Who are you trying to inspire with your photo shoot?
- What message are you trying to portray with your images?
- Where is the best location to bring your theme to life?
- When is the best time to capture your theme?
- How do you want people to feel when they look at your photos or lookbook?
- Why is this photo shoot better than others you've seen?
2. Pick your clothing:
Now that you know the theme of your photo shoot, you have to choose the right clothing pieces to bring your work to life. One of my favorite photo shoots we've done is A Whimsical Walk which incorporated natural woodsy backgrounds and rich colorful images. The clothing was meant to be bohemian and natural, but with a chic twist to really show off the Lotus Boutique brand. To prepare for this we had to get together and talk about how we can portray this image with the clothing choices, and then we chose 10 outfits that we felt best relayed the theme of A Whimsical Walk.
A Whimsical Walk - Lotus Boutique
3. Book your photo shoot team:
- The Photographer: As easy as it may seem to overlook the importance of a great photographer, this is not an expense you want to shrimp out on when planning how to have the perfect photo shoot; your photographer can make or break your photo shoot/lookbook. Trust us when we say that every aspect of getting a beautiful photo is enhanced when your photographer knows what he/she is doing. As important as it is to book the right photographer, it is also extremely important to trust your photographer. One of the things you especially need to trust is your photographer's knowledge on lighting. If you choose an area to shoot that has lighting too low or too harsh, your photos will suffer. With a well developed and communicated plan for your shoot, your photographer should be able to bring it to life.
- The Models: Another important aspect to great photos is having models that represent the image you want to portray. Though not necessary, models with experience tend to be more natural in their own skin and also know which angles of their body create the most flattering effect. Whether you choose to get a couple of friends together and hope for the best or you choose to find models through an agency, you want the people you choose to be comfortable and also understand the theme of the shoot.
***TIP: for shoots with inexperienced models, having a great fashion photographer will help with posing, confidence, and overall flow of the photo shoot. ***
- The Behind the Scenes Crew: As easy as it may seem to gather some family and friends to help with the operations of the photo shoot, really try to focus on bringing along people that will help the shoot to be as seamless as possible. You want your shoot to go as smooth as butter, correct? The first step is to recruit some people who are excited to be a part of your project! Depending on the size of your shoot, you will need a couple of stylists, light specialists, and an overall "photoshoot manager" to make sure everyone is doing their part.
-Your stylists need to know who is wearing what and which outfits should be grouped together. Stylists should be focused on getting the models changed quickly and in the correct order so that the photo shoot moves quickly and has minimal lag-time. -Your light specialists should be focused on working with the photographers on each shot to create the perfect lighting. Creating the perfect lighting is a seriously important area to cover when teaching how the have the perfect photo shoot. Great lighting can come from a variety of different sources. For example, at times the lighting is far too bright or harsh and your model needs to be "scrimmed" in order to block some of the light out; this technique essentially creates a shadow over the model so that there are not harsh lines from the sunlight. Other times, your environment may be too dark and you will have to use light reflectors to bounce light onto the models. This can create a BEAUTIFUL glowing effect! -Your photo shoot manager should be constantly bouncing around the set to make sure everyone and everything is being ran as efficiently as possible. This person should have natural leadership ability and be able to communicate with the team anything that needs more attention. -Your roll in the photo shoot should be ensuring the models' clothing is always perfectly placed for each photo taken. This can mean adjusting straps to create the most flattering neckline, adjusting necklaces to be centered, or even adjusting the skirt of a tight fitting dress so it lays straight. You want your models and clothing to look pristine. YOU have to be the eye in this or small details will be overlooked.
4. Gather your photo shoot supplies:Veteran photo shoot organizers know that one of the keys on how to have the perfect photo shoot is planning ahead. Before you bop on over to your photo shoot, you need to consider all of the supplies you may need to make the process as effortless as possible! Consider any props you may need, rolling racks to hang clothes, last minute wrinkle releaser, water bottles and snacks, and changing areas (if none are supplied you can get pop-up changing tents here.) Walk yourself through every part of the photo shoot from the time you get on location to the time you leave: what will you need, and what will make your experience easier?
5. Steam/Iron your clothing:This is possibly one of the most important tips on how to have the perfect photo shoot. You can have the most creative theme, the most beautiful models and the best photographer, but none of that will matter when you look at your photos and see wrinkly clothing. Unless your theme incorporates or calls for wrinkly or sloppy clothing, DO NOT overlook this top tip! This is especially important for anyone trying to sell the clothing from the shoot - bad photos with wrinkly clothing equal $0 in sales. The easiest way to get your clothing 100% wrinkle free is with a clothing steamer, and you can find them here.
6. Set up for your photo shoot:This step on how to have the perfect photo shoot is one that is easy to overlook. I've learned the key to a successful photo shoot is organization. Brings tables to lay out props, accessories, jewelry, shoes, water bottles, snacks, and anything else you may not want to lay on the ground. You can also bring blankets or chairs if anyone needs to rest for a moment or if the team decides to take a 15 minute break. You want your photo shoot environment to be as non-chaotic as possible. After setting up for the shoot, you will need your photo shoot manager to run down the list of responsibilities for everyone that day. Your photo shoot manager should ensure that everyone knows what is expected of them during the shoot and how to accomplish their duties.
7. Scout the perfect background at your photo shoot location:While your team begins to prepare the models, you and the photographer should be scouting for the perfect background to start your shoot well. Remember that the farther away your shooting location is from the area you chose to setup, the longer your models will have to walk back and forth and the longer your shoot will be. While choosing your perfect photo shoot background, keep in mind lighting and ease of access. If you're shooting in public, you don't want to choose an area that has a lot of traffic because you will constantly be in the way of people's commuting. You don't want to have to deal with having to move because you're blocking a sidewalk or traffic. Consider the possibility of needing a permit to shoot in certain areas. Some venues may require a permit to shoot on their location before allowing you to continue with your shoot.
8. Start your photo shoot:
Now that you have spent lots of time ensuring you are ready and know how to have the perfect photo shoot, it is time to START the photo shoot! WOOOHOOO! Call your first model/models over and jump into action! You'll want your lighting to be perfect, your background to be amazing, and your team to be excited! Once you have that in order your photographer should just start CLICK, CLICK, CLICKING away and bringing forth gorgeous photos.
9. Clean up your photo shoot area:Now that your shoot is over and it went as smoothly as possible, it is time to clean up your photo shoot mess and make it look like you were never there. Please do not ever leave your photo shoot location trashed or littered. If you are working in a public area, people will remember who left the mess and this is almost certainly frowned upon. You want to leave the location in the same condition (or better) than you found it.
10. Put away your photo shoot supplies:
Now that you have packed up your photo shoot and no one would even know you were there, it is time to head back home or to your office to unpack the photo shoot supplies and put them away for your next shoot. Trust me when I say you want to unpack your photo shoot right away so that nothing gets lost or forgotten. The more organized you stay, the better! It's important to see a job through and this definitely applies to photo shoots.
11. Enjoy your photos and possibly create a lookbook!
Okay, so you've just NAILED your first photo shoot with the points from this How to Have to Perfect Photo Shoot: 11 Top Tips!! You're exhausted, but creatively pumped up and so is your photographer! Don't pester your photographer too much for the photos. Though it's important to receive your photos in a timely manner, you need to be considerate that your photographer may want to do some editing and also that your photographer could have other clients they are working with as well (this is something that should be discussed upon hiring the photographer.) When your photographer does finish your photos and gives them to you, enjoy them! I'm certain that by following the above 10 tips, you now know exactly how to have the perfect photo shoot, and I know your pictures turned out BEAUTIFULLY! Create a lookbook from your photo shoot so that you can showcase the hard work of you and your team. To learn more about creating lookbooks, check out this amazing free site, Issuu.