By Michele Smith
Facebook – MicheleSmithMarketing

A photographer who works with models is not only talented, but has to have a certain skill set to make a photo shoot work. The following are some insider secrets that every photographer should have in their back pocket when it comes to working with models. These tips are sure to produce great results from makeup to hair, to simply photographing clothing.

Choosing the right talent makes all of the difference. Choosing talent isn’t just about picking the most experienced model on the planet. Every photographer should carefully plan ahead – thinking about the story behind the shoot, the concept, the theme and most importantly, the intended outcome. What the agency really want to see at the end of the day is what most photographers should keep in mind. The model subject should be fitting of the story line, for example, the sunny beach clad girl may be great for the Hamptons, but not for the dark alleys of New York.

Take breaks. With all of the excitement of being on set, time tends to run by very quickly. For the sake of everyone on the set (makeup artists, stylists, yourself), take regular breaks. This will keep everyones’ energy up and will ensure a successful photo shoot. Try to keep the day short in order to especially keep the model/model’s energetic and enthused. At the end of the day, you do not want to be working with a grumpy, burnt-out team.

Make sure you use the lighting correctly. Many times photographers will find themselves shooting editorials where the models face is the focus of the shoot. Consider whether or not you need studio lighting vs. relying on natural lighting alone. Studio lighting is great for shooting portraits. If you opt for natural light, just be sure that you do not find your model squinting in the sun, because you want the ocean backdrop.

Always be aware of the elements. Make sure you consider the outside elements (weather) and plan your photo shoot accordingly. If the photo shoot is in the hot summer sun, bring shade tents and plenty of water. If the location is in a cooler location and this goes for any weather situation, communicate with everyone to dress accordingly. Always look at the health and wellbeing of your entire team at all times.

Never forget to take candid shots. First, you will never know when these come in handy – for example, you may have your best shot when the model is not looking directly at the camera. Always look for moments that are midway through a fit of laughter as this candid shot will appear more natural and spontaneous. Once you have one perfect candid shot it will look 100 times better than one that has been forced.

Keep your own energy up. By making an effort to keep your own energy up, you will be indirectly motivating your entire team. Photo shoots on location can be tiresome for everyone involved. In actuality, many models are very shy, so keeping them comfortable, positive and happy is key to a successful shoot. This will also help models keep their expressions fresh and natural looking.