The last part of picking a good photographer
Where does the photographer shoot? Do they shoot in a dedicated studio or a home studio? While it is true that many photographers work out of their own homes (to keep overhead low), it is good to discuss this before hand and get more information about exactly what type of environment you would be shooting in. You don’t want to be surprised when you show up to shoot. If they have a “home studio”, how often do they shoot there? Do they have clear examples of photos they have taken in that environment?
Does the photographer have a web site? Although you are working with a photographer and not necessarily a web page designer, something must be said about quality and attention to detail. Is the photographer’s web site presented in a professional fashion or is it simply an afterthought?
Are the web pages riddled with grammatical errors and spelling mistakes? How do you feel about working with someone who doesn’t care enough about what their web site says about them to bother to spell check or present photos and/or information in a professional fashion? A good photographer should care about the quality of their work beyond just their photographs. Even photographers who are unable to create their own web sites can easily use web based software to put information and photos online. Or they can simply hire a company to design and maintain a web site for them.
Any professional photographer should have a copy of their model release handy. It is good to review this release prior to your shoot date.
Picking a good photographer
REPUTATION & REFERENCES
Is the photographer reputable? Do they have references? Are they open with providing these references or additional information upon request? Any professional photographer should easily have 3 or more references they can provide upon request.
Is all contact made by the photographer handled in a professional fashion? Does the “tone” of the photographer’s correspondence leave you confident that you would be working with a quality and professional organization? Are all of your questions answered in a way that makes you feel comfortable?
Finding a photographer with whom you can communicate openly and who can understand your style and personality is important. Communication & comfort is critical to great photos. It is important that you’re comfortable and that your photographer is someone who can not only listen, learn, and react to your words, gestures and body language, but someone who you can listen to. When the photo shoot comes, you’ll be looking into a lens and will only hear the voice of your photographer, so you need to be comfortable with that voice. (written by Zero Dean)
With overwhelming desert mountains and a dry blue sky for background, Calvin Klein Swim 2012 campaign shows Lily Donaldson lusting for refreshing pristine waters. Sebastian Kim captured the British blond beauty alongside male model Vladimir Ivanov.
Golden skinned, Lily powerfully faces the extreme heat pulling her orange draped swimsuit off with the entire attitude and energy that colors transmits.
These are the things you need to consider before choosing to work with a photographer:
Does the photographer have a particular style or a favorite kind of subject? If a photographer’s portfolio consists of mostly nudes or boudoir photos and this is something that doesn’t interest you, then be very clear about this during your correspondence with that photographer.
TALENT VS EXPERIENCE
Many photographers will use their years of experience to attract your business (Ie. “I’ve been doing photography for 25 years”). It is not years of experience that necessarily makes a good photographer. I’ve seen a number of photographers claim to have several years of experience, yet their photography has yet to reach what could be called a professional level. I think the publishers of Rolling Stone Magazine sum it up best when they say, ” It’s not about the photographer’s experience, it’s about a photographer’s talent and eye. Lots of photographers have years of professional experience but their work isn’t for us. Others might not have years of experience, but they have this amazing eye.” As a general rule, judge a photographer by the work you see, not by any claims to years of experience. (written by Zero Dean)
“Today is the day supermodel Kate Moss blows out 38 candles! This day is also special for closing a year full of personal and professional accomplishments.
Since her last birthday, Kate wore a fairytale gown, ivory and beaded, designed by her friend John Galliano, to marry Jamie Hince, in a Great Gatsby-themed wedding.
Her work seems to have made her as happy as her love life. From magazines and catwalks to business, she did it all. She covered British Vogue for the 31st time, started a line of Rimmel lipsticks, hosted a remarkable party for Rimmel at Battersea Power Station during London Fashion Week, at last but not the least, she dazzled the audience twice on her friend Marc Jacobs’ Louis Vuitton catwalk: smoking a glamorous and provocative cigarette (Fall/Winter 2011/12 show) and riding a beautiful carrousel horse (Spring/Summer 2012).”
These are the things you need to consider before choosing to work with a photographer….
If anyone shoots enough photos, he or she is going to have a few lucky good shots to pick from. What you want to see in a photographer’s portfolio is consistency. This means you should look for several good shots done during a single shoot. If a photographer doesn’t have examples readily available on-line, see if he/she is willing to provide you with a few other good examples from a single photo shoot with a model. You should be confident that working with a particular photographer will yield work of a consistently high quality.
Most good photographers develop their own distinct style. This doesn’t mean one style is necessarily better than another in any absolute sense. But this does mean that you should pick a photographer who shows you examples of the kind of photography that you want in your portfolio.
Does the photographer have something to offer? Are you confident in the photographer’s work and abilities to the point that you believe working with the photographer will help advance your career in one fashion or another or somehow open up other opportunities? (written by Zero Dean)
“Alexander Neumann shot Emily DiDonato for a classically dramatic fashion editorial of Vogue Mexico January issue. Sultry in head-to-toe black outfits, she evokes the fabulous glamour of the mighty pin ups. Styled by Vanessa Bellugeon in form-fitting silky and see-through dresses labeled Givenchy, Emilio Pucci, Chanel and Louis Vuitton, among others, Emily still shows the innocence of a Lolita. The sleek red lips are the ultimate hint of sensuality. Tall and slender, she allures with grace and playfulness.”
In the next couple of days we will list what you should looking for in a good photographer.
I am often asked by the models who shoot with me, “How do I pick the right photographers to work with?”, and I can understand why.
When you’re just starting out, it can be difficult to judge one photographer from another. Models who join OneModelPlace, for example, are often deluged with emails from amateur and professional photographers alike who all seek to work with the model (or aspiring model) in one capacity or another.
Depending on the model, their experience level, and the information they post in their OMP profile, requests from photographers vary from TFP requests to offers to pay the model for their time. With so many options coming in, how does one know who to work with or what priority to place on the various requests?
When it comes down to picking a photographer to work with, trust your intuition. If it seems like an amateur operation, it probably is. Being “full time” does not guarantee a true professional quality operation.
These are the things you need to consider before choosing to work with a photographer:
Do you actually like the photographer’s work? Does it appeal to you? You don’t have to know a lot about photography to judge a photographer’s work. Simply take a look at the photographer’s portfolio and ask yourself whether you can imagine the photographer’s images in a magazine, gallery, or commercial product? If so, what kinds of magazines or products? Are these the types of places you would like your photos to be?
Is the photographer using wrinkled bed sheets as backdrops, tacky props, poor lighting, or has photos looked like they were taken in the 70’s? (written by Zero Dean)
Supermodel Naomi Campell is back on the ads! This time, alongside Karen Elson, Kristen McMenamy and Daphne Groeneveld, she is part of a super gang of golden dressed models, posing for Steven Meisel. This shooting, in the Pier 59 studios in New York under Eva Cavalli’s creative directons, was meant to produce Roberto Cavalli Spring 2012 campaign, featuring both the runway and the underwear collections. Guido Palau took care of the models windswept hair and Pat McGrath did their nude, polished make-up.
Get a release for all the work that you do. A release is a legally binding contract between you and the photographer. A release will indicate in legal terms such things as how much a model will be paid, where photographs may be used and under what limitations. It is extremely important that you read all releases (contracts) carefully. And if there is something you don’t understand, get it clarified. It is best to see all released ahead of shooting. This way you are not surprised by anything you may encounter.
Whether you are doing TFP or shooting for pay, establish exact terms of compensation prior to shooting and get it in writing. Terms may include the reception of CDs & prints to exactly dollar amount. It is important to do this prior to shooting, so that avoid any “confusion” after a shoot when a photographer tells you, “I meant $50 for the whole shoot, not $50 an hour”. Sometimes situations like this are the result of genuine miscommunication. However, there may be other times where they is not. If doing TFP, it assures you that the photographer is legally bound to provide you with the contents of the shoot and within a specific timeframe.
Establish your limitations prior to shooting (especially if you are doing any kind of nude work). Getting a photographer to agree to and sign a document stating how the photos from your shoot may be used will protect you from possible conflicts of interest. Also, discussing these limitations, and getting a signed agreement before-hand, should help constrain a photoshoot to these terms during shooting.
When doing a paid shoot, do not sign a release until you are paid. (Written by Zero Dean)