Archive for ‘upcoming shoots’

July 20, 2011

Upcoming Event: A Sneak Preview of “The White Collection – LUXE”

I have the honor of modeling for bridal designer Atha Sharod in the Atha & Friends Present A Sneak Preview of “The White Collection – LUXE” event coming up on Sunday, August 7.  

Brides who attend the event will get a sneak preview of Atha Sharod’s The White Collection – LUXE, which features beautiful couture bridal gowns and honeymoon negligees.  Atha Sharod’s stunning pieces are made from 100% silk and French imported laces, and are custom made for each bride to ensure a perfect fit.  In addition to getting a chance to see Atha Sharod’s beautiful White Collection – LUXE, event guests will have a chance to sample wedding cake, enjoy music, food, champagne, gift bags and most importantly, the beautiful wedding gowns.  They will also get to experience a live photo shoot by Wedding and Engagement Photographer, Tuan H. Bui.  The photos from the shoot will be used for the catalog and website that the company will use to promote the collection.  Robert Sharod, the designer, says “I created this collection as a tribute to the American woman. I wanted her to know that she could be independent and yet be feminine at the same time” when describing his collection.  Brides, this event is one that’s not to be missed!

This incredible, one-of-a-kind bridal event will take place Sunday, August 7 from 4P to 7P, and will be held at the Loft on Lake, located at 1366 West Lake, Chicago, IL.  Tickets are less than $25 and can be bought in advance here: athasharodbridal.eventbrite.com  You can RSVP for the event on Facebook too… but be sure to buy your tickets in advance!

Check out this list of incredible preferred vendors for the event!

  • Wedding Planner: Charity & Gabriela with A La Moda Events
  • Photographer: Tuan H Bui
  • Videographer: Al with Elite Video Productions
  • Fashion Illustrator: Rosemary Fanti
  • Bouquet Preservationist: Loreen Hospodar
  • Make Up Artist: Tracy Ballog
  • Bridal Stylist: Susan from the Left Bank
  • Menu Tastings: Norman’s Bistro & Cedar’s Mediterranean
  • Wedding Cake & Bakery: Richard with Rueter’s Bakery
  • Dessert Tray Stylist: Lizabeth with Fancy Candies & Sweet Buffets
  • Vocalist: Karen Dade
  • Live Trio: The Bons Vivants

Brides, if you’re looking to make your wedding a classy, beautiful event, the Atha & Friends Present A Sneak Preview of “The White Collection – LUXE” event is THE place to go to find everything you’ll need to make your special day memorable.

Check out Atha Sharod online:
The official Atha Sharod website: www.athasharodbridal.com
Become a fan on Facebook: www.facebook.com/pages/Atha-Sharod-Bridal/166098103434102
Be friends on Facebook: www.facebook.com/athasharodbridal
Follow Atha Sharod on Twitter: www.twitter.com/AthaBridal
Robert’s Blog: athasharodbridal1.blogspot.com

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March 11, 2011

My Pre-Shoot Prep & Pep Routine

After so many years modeling (gosh, it feels weird saying it that way, but it’s true), I’ve gotten into, what I feel is, a great pre-shoot routine.  I’ve decided to take some time to share it with you, because a lot of new models have been asking about it.  I opted to start a few weeks out, instead of just the night before, because I do a lot of work for every shoot I do, and it’s generally much appreciated.

Few Weeks to 1 Week Out:

  • Work on getting a few basic ideas set with the photographer, to make sure we’re on the same page.
  • Once ideas are set, scan thru ideas folders for pose, wardrobe, and hair/makeup inspiration.
  • Put ideas into a separate folder and organize by look (using more folders).
  • Send a couple shots to the photographer as a “here’s what I’m thinking” kinda thing.  Generally it’s just hair, makeup and wardrobe ideas.  This concretes that we’re on the same page.

2 Days Before:

  • Print out all ideas, organized by look.
  • Gather up all wardrobe and accessories I plan on wearing, and try on all outfits.
  • Make adjustments as necessary (not everything looks as good on as it does in my head).
  • Any major adjustments to wardrobe get sent in a note to the photographer.  Minor changes are hand-written on printouts.
  • Make sure all wardrobe is clean, nicely hung, and pressed (if necessary).

The Night Before:

  • Get wardrobe/accessories and any hair/makeup products together.
  • Make a list of all items coming with me to the shoot (wardrobe, accessories, shoes, undergarments, etc.).
  • Make sure any ideas I have (printouts of poses, wardrobe ideas, etc.) are in bag.
  • Make sure everything that is coming with me is by front door so nothing gets forgotten. (Now that I have a garage, I could load up the car the night before instead, but some things might not be great exposed to heat/cold overnight, and others might be best left hanging as long as possible to prevent wrinkles.)
  • If, for whatever reason, something can’t be put by the front door, write a note and stick it to the doorknob.
  • Write down phone numbers, addresses and basic directions.  Make a second copy of same to have at home.
  • Create shoot playlist for iPod for drive to shoot. (I generally base this around the theme of the shoot, and vary it per shoot.)
  • Plug in cell next to bed to charge.
  • Set alarm for 2 hours prior to when I have to leave.  (I do this even if it’s a different alarm from my wake up, so I know when I need to start getting ready.)
  • Get in the shower to shave legs, do face mask, and deep condition hair.  Do not dry hair after shower–let air dry.
  • Take a hot bath with a glass of white wine, a few cubes of cheese, and good book.  (Remember to lock dog out of bathroom to avoid whining and/or nudging of wine glass into tub.)
  • Get to bed early enough to allow at least 7-8 hours of sleep.

The Morning Of:

  • Wake up, brush teeth, and shower (don’t condition hair, and shave pits in shower, just before hopping out).
  • Have a small bowl of cereal, or 2 scrambled eggs, and coffee.  Quick, easy breakfast that won’t make me bloat, and won’t have my tummy grumbling an hour into the shoot.
  • Brush teeth again.
  • Dress in loose fitting clothes to avoid lines, regardless of what I’m shooting.
  • Load up car.  Double check to make sure everything is in car.
  • Make sure I have purse, cell phone and iPod, as well as directions and photographer’s info.
  • Drop photographer a “leaving my place now” call or text.
  • Plug in iPod and start awesome playlist.
  • Head out.
  • If there’s time, swing by a gas station or Walgreens and grab a 20oz. bottle of Mountain Dew.  (Because I’m a caffeine addict.)

So there you have it.  Lots of work, and lots of little details, but it’s a routine I’ve gotten pretty familiar with now (hence why I’m calling it a routine) 🙂  Even after a break, I find myself falling naturally into it.

February 17, 2011

Interview!

Don’t forget, tonight my interview with Ron and Shawna from the Photographer & Model podcast goes up!  Look for Episode 89 here: http://www.photographerandmodel.com/podcast.php (I’ll post a permalink to my specific episode next week… I’ll be on the road this weekend.)

While you’re waiting to check out my episode, check out these other pretty darn useful blog posts and webcasts of theirs!

February 9, 2011

Checking References

Often times, one of the first things a model is told when she asks “how do I know this guy is legit” or “how do I stay safe” is that she should check references.  While not foolproof or a 100% guarantee that the photographer won’t be a sleezebag and will get you images back, it’s a good starting point.  I check references on all photographers I’m working with for the first time.  Male or female.  Paid or trade.  Here’s how I go about doing it.

Looking at Credited Models & Sending Messages
I go through the photographer’s portfolio and look at their recent photos.  Provided they’ve credited the models on their photos, I send a message to 3-5 models they’ve recently worked with (using the photo upload date as a gauge).  From there, I move to their profile and look at the credits section, and randomly choose an additional 3-5 models and message them (I have, lately, been making sure the models have been active within the last month, preferably the last week).  If there are any models I know personally, I will send them a note in addition to the other notes I’ve sent out, though I don’t send more than 4 of these out.  This means, I’m sending no less than 6 messages out, and sometimes as many as 12.

I send so many messages out because I find that often, models don’t get back on reference checks.  I’m not sure why, but that seems to be the case.  I like to have at least 3 models let me know how their experience was with a photographer, so the more messages I send out, the higher my chances of getting the feedback I need.

When There Are No Credits
In the event a photographer has zero credits listed, things get a little trickier.  Occasionally, I’ve matched up a model to her photo, but that’s rare.  I ask the photographer directly for a list of references to contact via whatever site I’m on, though I prefer not to leave it just at that.  I also spend some time looking through the photographer’s tags and see if there are any “great shoot” type tags.  If so, I’ll message those models.  I’ve even messaged a MUA I’ve worked with in the past, for her take on things.

Another thing I’ve done in the event of zero credits is drop a line to a few of the other experienced models in the area, asking if they know anything about the photographer or who he might have worked with.

There’s also been a rare case where I’ve used www.tfp.me to search for forum posts by that member.  I do this either to gauge attitude, or because I’ve felt that “hey, why do I feel like I’ve talked to this guy before” feeling.

The Actual Message
When I send my messages out, I make it clear what I’m looking for in the subject of my message.  Often, it’s something like, “Reference Check: [Photographer Name]”.  I make sure I use the name they list themselves as on whatever site I’m using, at least in the subject, so there’s less confusion.

In the body of the message, I keep it as brief as possible, just letting them know that [Photographer Name] is interested in working with me, and noting that I saw they had worked together.  I often give a link to the photographer’s profile on that site, again to help lessen confusion.   I politely ask them if they’d take a minute or two to answer a few quick questions, so that I can be sure I want to work with them.  I make sure to not disclose what arrangement the photographer has contacted me for (paid or TF*), or to color the waters with any initial impressions I may have.  I also make sure to thank them for their time.

The Questions
I have come up with a list of specific questions regarding what I want to know about a photographer prior to working with them.  I modify the list every so often, adding questions as situations arise (or as references come back) that make me think “huh, I would have liked to have known that in advance” or “well, knowing that would certainly have changed things”.  Here is my list of questions I ask models when I check a photographer’s references.

  • Was it your first time working with [Photographer Name]?
  • If not, how many times did you work together?
  • Did you work directly with [Photographer Name], or someone else?
  • Was there a MUA, assistant, or other industry-related person on set?
  • If so, were they there the whole time?
  • Was anyone present on set that you were not aware would be there?
  • Did you bring someone along with you that wasn’t related to the shoot?
  • Where did you shoot (i.e. location, studio, home)?
  • Was the photographer on time, and was he ready to shoot when you were?
  • Was the shoot paid or trade?
  • If the shoot was trade, did you receive portfolio-ready images in the time frame promised?
  • Was the photographer generally courteous and professional?
  • Did anything happen that would cause you to not shoot with the photographer again?

I duplicate some of these if I need to check a MUA’s reference, though I haven’t done that in awhile because I have found a few select MUAs I enjoy working with, and opt to work with them regularly instead of dealing with finding new people and risking them not showing up, being unsanitary, whatever.  In the rare case that I’m booking a model for something, I use many of the same questions as well.

Making It Easy For Others
I have discovered that sometimes, photographers don’t credit models on photos, and sometimes type numbers into their lists correctly (I imagine this isn’t exclusive to photographers either, but I’m going by what I’ve found).  This makes it difficult to check references.  So, whenever possible, credit the people you’ve worked with, and make sure that if you’re keeping a list of people you’ve worked with by member number, that you correctly note that number.

More You Can Do
If a model wants to expand on checking references (or is using, say CraigsList to book and there’s no network or profile to help find people they’ve worked with), these 2 articles give some great pointers.

January 24, 2011

Upcoming Interview

I was just contacted by Ron over at www.photographerandmodel.com.  They want to interview me for their Podcast! 🙂 Supercool!

We’ll be recording February 11, and the episodes are released every Thursday at 1A.  So you’ll probably get to hear my spot Feb 17th or so.

I’ll post more about this as it gets closer, but if you have any questions, feel free to add them to the comments and I’ll see if Ron and co-host would be willing to ask them.

January 4, 2011

Great Opportunity for New Models

Intro to Modeling: Learn the basics from an experienced model while building your modeling portfolio with one of the most talented local photographers.

Workshop Date: Saturday, January 22, 2011
Workshop Length: 3 Hours (12P to 3P)

Limited Space: 6 Models
Cost: $75

Hosted By: Studio 2 Imaging in Lake Zurich, IL
Instructed By: Rachel Jay
Photography By: Walter Bilinski

Details & RSVP: CLICK HERE

What You’ll Get: In addition to learning valuable information from experienced hobbyist model Rachel Jay, you’ll get one-on-one pose coaching from her while you shoot with Walter. You’ll receive 5 to 7 edited photos from Walter on a CD approximately 2 weeks after the workshop. You can use these to start your online portfolio. We’ll also provide you with a list of resources to check out, as well as some articles to read later on.

Photographers, please do not RSVP “Yes” for this workshop. This workshop is for models only!

Feel free to pass along this link, repost the banner, etc!

November 8, 2010

Booking A Model

For whatever reason, some photographers are non-committal when it comes to booking, or think a minimal amount of info sent to a model suddenly means they’ve booked said model.  For models, this is frustrating (especially when the same photographers are seen in the forums complaining about no-show models or not being able to find any models in their area).  Here are some tips and things to avoid doing when booking a model.

“Let’s shoot” doesn’t constitute booking.
Models need, at the very least, a location, date, time and a basic idea of what they’re shooting.  Even better if you can provide information regarding a styling team (HS and MUA), your contact information (phone and email), and more specifics regarding shoot style and wardrobe required for it.  You don’t need to give all that info up front, and can even collaborate on it and discuss it all with individuals as you set stuff up.  But the more into a model has, the better.

Inviting a model to an event doesn’t mean you’ve booked her for that event.
Especially when there are going to be other photographers in attendance.  If you are interested in working with a model at an event, communicate this with her so she knows to set aside time for you.  Giving her details as to what you want to shoot (especially if it’s an open event) is helpful too (see above).

Discussing an upcoming shoot or event with a model on a forum doesn’t mean you’ve booked her for the shoot/event.
Even if the date, time and location are discussed in the forum, many models need a confirmation, contact details, and a few other bits of info to be sent privately (via PM or email).  Discussing something in a forum isn’t really the best way to book a model, and many models won’t consider themselves booked for the shoot/event without a PM to show the photographer was serious about working together.

“Bring whatever you want” isn’t a good idea when discussing wardrobe.
In fact, it generally leads to frustration for models.  Not only do we stress over what to bring, nut undoubtedly the photographer says “too bad you don’t have [something else]… I had a great idea involving [that item]” and it’s a piece of clothing or an accessory the model has sitting at home in her closet.  Had the photographer been open with his ideas in the first place, the model could have coordinated what she was bringing, and there’d be know “too bad” BS.

Dropping communication is lame.
This applies to everyone, really, because it’s not just a photographer issue.  But ceasing communication at any point during the planning process is a no no.  Believe me, I get that things get forgotten and stuff, however, if you’re super interested in shooting with someone, “forgetting” him or her isn’t going to score you any points.  If, for whatever reason, your circumstances change or you’re not interested in what they have to offer (like rates), say so. We’re human, we understand, and in many cases, we might even be willing to negotiate if money is an issue.  So don’t drop communication because you think our rates are too high, the concept discussion isn’t going the way you wanted, or whatever.  See if you can resolve the issues first!

Confirm, confirm, confirm!
Once you’set a date, idea, location, time, and everything else, confirm it all with the model in one, easy to read message (lists are good).  It doesn’t have to be long, but confirm everything to make sure you’re both still on the same page.  It’ll save a variety of headaches later on.

 

September 27, 2010

Saturday!!

The event is coming up FAST!  And boy do we have a lot going on!  Here are some of our most notable updates:

  • We’ve opened up 3 more all day spots for photographers!  Hurry up and register now to secure one of these coveted spots!
  • Stiletto Squad is bringing their Pink Label out to shoot with some of our models!  Exciting! 🙂
  • Videographer Steven Hiller will be donating his time and expertise to video the entire day’s events!
  • We have raised over $900 at this point, and with 17 spots available at $30 each and 3 at $45 each, that’s an extra $645 (minus Eventbrite and Paypal fees) to be made!  Even if we just fill half of those spots, we’ll easily hit our $1000 goal!

So please, continue to help spread the word and help us book up these last 20 model and photographer spots for Saturday!

September 16, 2010

“Pink for October” Breast Cancer Awareness Charity Group Shoot

For more information, or to register, visit
http://shoot4awareness.eventbrite.com

If you have questions about the event, feel free to email me at shoot4awareness@gmail.com 🙂

September 10, 2010

Upcoming Stuff

First, and most exciting, I’m working on scheduling a group shoot 🙂  The event will be October 2nd in Chicago, IL.  It will also be a charity event, with the proceeds going to a local breast cancer awareness group.  Awesome!!

Second, I have an awesome shoot coming up tomorrow that’s going to kick some major ass.  It’s WAY different from anything I’ve ever done, and I’m pretty excited for it 🙂  It’s with Christian Carlson and Christin C too, which means it’s just going to be a ton of fun!

More details on the group event soon… I’m getting some stuff finalized and will be posting a link soon 🙂  Keep your eyes peeled!

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