First Shoot

A question posted on Mayhem got me thinking about what new models should look for from their first shoot.

When I started, I had no idea what I was doing. I didn’t know what I needed, what I should shoot in, how to pose… none of it. Looking back, I would be sure to start out with the following studio shots:

– A clean headshot, straight-faced
– A clean headshot, smiling naturally
– A full-length front shot in basic jeans, black T, and high heels
– A full-length side shot in the same outfit

I’d maybe do some basic poses in the jeans and T with a chair or stool, but keep the “senior portrait” cheese feel out of it if possible. A solid background would likely help. Maybe also some more candid type shots–something a bit more natural.

As far as location stuff goes, it will vary based on the kind of stuff the model is interested in doing. I tried to think back to my first few location shoots, and it was quite difficult, LOL. I know I did one shoot at the beach, and the photographer kept directing me to do very glamour-type poses (which just didn’t work for me).

As a Model
As a model preparing for your first shoot, try to keep things simple. I know the urge to get crazy and do something funky is strong, but if you do that right away, chances are you’re going to have a hard time getting photographers to book you if they don’t know what you look like normally. If you don’t know how to pose, look online and in magazines, and find poses in the genre of modeling you’re interested in doing and print them out. If you don’t have time to practice them, bring them with and have the photographer help guide you.

And that brings me to another point. I know it’s difficult to do when you first get started, especially if you’re going to just be a hobbyist, but try to figure out what genre of modeling you want to get into. Starting with the information at http://www.newmodels.com is a good idea.

And of course, make sure you communicate with the photographer beforehand. Make sure he/she knows it’s your first shoot and that you might need direction (amongst other things, of course).

As a Photographer
If you’re going to be working with a new model, consider looking online for a posing guide to have on hand in case you need assistance posing the model. I have seen some available for free download if you’re not interested in purchasing one. I have also seen photographers use examples from some of their photography books, and of course, magazines and images found online.

And as always, communicate with the model beforehand.

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