Model Photography For Beginners | David Miller | Skillshare

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

15 Lessons (1h 11m)
    • 1. Intro

    • 2. Where To Find Models To Work With

    • 3. Making Contact With A Model

    • 4. General Model Photography Terminology

    • 5. Set Terminology

    • 6. Sky SF Location Model Shoot

    • 7. Genre Terminology

    • 8. Photographic Behavior Terminology

    • 9. Compensating Models

    • 10. Where Shoot Ideas Come From

    • 11. Hailey J Phoenix Hairstyling Model Shoot

    • 12. Styling Advice

    • 13. Running The Set Pt 1

    • 14. Running the Set Pt 2

    • 15. Model photography wrap up

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About This Class

Creative portraits, fashion showcases, artistic bodyscapes- these are but a few of the interpretations people take with model photography.  


Working with talented professional women and men to achieve artistic goals goes back centuries, but a lot of people are confused about the ins and outs of the modern model photography environment.  Where do you find models, what do you say, how do you compensate them?  In this course we aim to demystify Model Photography.

Meet Your Teacher

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David Miller

Multimedia Artist For Primordial Creative studio


I'm David, a multimedia artist in Phoenix, and my studio is Primordial Creative.  


I have always been interested in the visual arts from an early age- drawing, painting, and clay- but around my high school years I became interested in photography for the social aspect of involving other people, the adventure inherent in seeking out pictures, and the presentation of reality that wasn't limited by my drawing skills.


One thing in my work that has stayed consistent over the decades since then is I have an equal interest in the reality of the lens next to the fictions we can create in drawing, painting, animation, graphic design, and sound design.  As cameras have incorporated video and audio features, and as Adobe's Creative Cloud all... See full profile

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1. Intro: hello out there. David Miller. I'm in Phoenix, Arizona. Multimedia artist, photographer, educator, short film maker and I want to talk to you about the art of model photography. So model photography is a very large umbrella. It can cover lifestyle type of work, things that have to do with fashion. It can cover nude photography. It can cover sort of elaborate hair and makeup schemes, and it can cover things that are incredibly commercial. So there's a lot to talk about in this class, and we're gonna break it down by genre by concept. Firstly, I want to talk about what the benefits are of doing any sort of model photography over other kinds of photography. Why you would even want to get into this sort of stuff. Number one. You have a compliant individual when you were doing model photography. What I mean by compliant individual is you do not have to spend a lot of time energy money going out and seeking subject matter for your photographic works. When I was into landscape photography, I had to drive very long distances, and then I had weather conditions that I had no control over. I had social conditions that I had no control over meaning. If I got to my location and there were a bunch of other people around or there was an event , there wasn't much I could do about it. Same with street photography. Street photography involves you going up and down streets, hopefully in urban areas, because that's where most of the people are. And you're looking for those moments where there's like an interesting juxtaposition of subjects and backgrounds. Finding people are doing interesting things. It's very difficult. Rhoda Ho. You have a very hard time getting great photographs when you do street photography because you have no control over those environments. When you have a complaint individual meeting your model, you can collaborate. You can have hair makeup the way you want it. You can do the location where you want it. You can build a lasting photographic relationship with a person, so there's a a shorthand working together much like a director who works with the same actors over and over and over again. These are some of the reasons why model photography is an interesting and valid approach. Teoh Finding subjects Let's talk quickly about the downsides of model photography one, there is going to be money involved, even if you don't think there is. Even if you think you're the greatest retire from the world and people should be throwing themselves at your feet to work with you, you still have an obligation to compensate models in one way or another on oftentimes these locations that we can set up. If it's a studio space and you aren't the owner of a studio, it might cost you money. There might be some travel expenses involved. There might be some hair makeup, wardrobe expenses involved. Any kind of photography costs, money and model photography is no difference. Also, one thing that I want to get out of the way you right up front is that you are dealing with personalities not just the models, but your own personality. And if you are somebody who has ulterior motives or you are somebody who has a hard time getting along with other people or speaking the language of sort of a younger model, be they male or female, you will probably run into problems. And if you have difficulty get along with other people or not having ulterior motives than I invite you to not pursue model photography. Now, with that out of the way, I want to tell you that even though I avoided doing model photography for the 1st 10 years of my photographic career, I have actually found it to be incredibly rewarding over the last seven or eight years that I've been doing it. And one of the reasons I find it rewarding is that it is actually enabled me to get better at photographing people who are not models. So if I understand how somebody compose in a certain way to look good and what hair and makeup works and what doesn't and what warder of works on what locations are ideal for shooting models? And not, I can translate these skills to shooting families or even shooting landscapes or shooting architecture. There are skills that you pick up when you are trying your best at model photography that you can translate to other genres. I've also found it rewarding because we live in a social networking world. Currently, Andi, there is a lot of interest in model photography, but when you are working with compliant individuals and you are collaborating on creative works, if they have a stake in what they're creating as much as you as the originator do. Then they will share it and they'll talk about it. And that's tell other people how great you are or how bad you are if you're bad. Um, but this is a way of growing your creative network, and I'm not just saying getting follows and getting likes. I'm talking about finding other people whose vision aligns with yours, finding other people that you can create with Andi. They don't have to be local. They might be in the other side of the planet. But believe me when I say that model photography has allowed me to grow this creative atmosphere much further and faster and greater than any landscape photography ever did than any animal photography I ever did, animals will not share the work and they won't tell people how great you are. The landscape will not share your work in tell the people how great you are, but working with models, hair and makeup artists, designers and so forth, these people will advocate for you. So the way this class is going to be broken down, I'm gonna talk to you about the genres of photography that involved models. I'm going to talk about how you can book models and give you some tips on how to interact with them. I'm going to show you examples of my own work and tell you the story behind those chutes. We'll talk about concepts and we'll talk about a year, and we'll get into the location shooting process with the model and the studio shooting process with. And lastly, we'll do a post processing retouching tutorial involving model photography. Let's begin. 2. Where To Find Models To Work With: in this section. I want to talk to you about how you can go about meeting models. And if you aren't established at all, if you're a beginner, it can be very difficult. A lot of times people ask a coworker or somebody they're familiar with at the local coffee shop. Um, when you want to level up beyond the people you know, you want to start meeting some strangers who happen to have modeling skills. There are a few different routes. One is the agency route. This is where you hired directly through a company, and they will look at your work and decide whether they think that you have something that they want their model to shoot. So they're the go between Between you and the model, I rarely have used agencies. But people who are more involved in the fashion scene almost always swear by them because it is a guarantee that the model will arrive and exhibit professional behavior. That's not always the case when you are doing a freelance thing where you're contacting over a website, so we'll get into that in a moment. But all major cities have modeling agencies and they have very well put together portfolios of what the people they have look like, what their particular talents are, what genres they like to shoot their statistics. So their height, etcetera. And I feel like if you wanted Teoh 100% guarantee that you were going to get a professional person who shows up modeling agency is probably the first thing you should do. If you're booking, then we have the various Web portals that were a little more common in the two thousands in early 2000 tens. I feel like social media has really supplanted a lot of these red portals, but I'm gonna go ahead and mention them because I've used a few of them, and it's how I built my portfolio. So the main one in the United States and Europe, his model mayhem. And this is where anybody can open a page as a model, photographer, stylist, a hairstylist, a makeup artist, etcetera, etcetera. They can fill this page with a portfolio of images. These images can be 18 plus, they can't have nudity in them. You can list the genres of modeling that you I prefer to work in, and you can put out casting calls. So in the past, if I was going to Los Angeles, I would put a casting call, say, I'm going to be here for these days. I'm looking for this. It's either paid or trade and get in touch with me here. Or here is my email address and I would get a fairly good response and I could sort of pick and choose what was going to work out for me. Um, the last few times I've tried casting calls, though, because so much of the modeling industry has moved over to, like Instagram and Tumblr and things like that. Uh, I have not had a great success rate with my last few casting calls When I'm gone to other cities. Another website that I can think of is one model place. I've never used that myself, but I feel like if you're more in the fashion beauty industry that is more geared towards that model, mayhem is kind of like a free for all since the name mayhem 3. Making Contact With A Model: when you're initiating contact with the model, almost all of them want to know these particular details who you are, what you want to shoot, when and where and how they're being compensated. Those four things are super important, and then some might want to know the usage of the photos. So if you were somebody who wanted to submit your photos to a magazine, I would mention that in that first introductory paragraph, If you are somebody who exhibits your artwork on walls, you might say, Hi, my name's David Miller. I'm a photographer in Phoenix. I I'm looking for a particular type of shots, and here's the compensation and the uses. They're going in a gallery show something like their potential gallery show. You can see that I would never lie and say, These are gonna be published in the In Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue or anything like that. I mean, there's no purpose for it. All that's going to end up happening is if you lie about something, you're going to end up on a model blacklist that all the models look at and they'll see your name and they'll say, Okay, forget that guy, never working with him again. So what you send them, though it should be short and succinct. It should be a paragraph or less. It shouldn't be a full page of text because nobody will read it. And if you have a strong portfolio already on, say, a real website, or at least your instagram, uh, you're giving them an idea of the kind of work that you creates and whether they want to be part of that work. If you don't have that, or if you're trying to shoot something that's totally different than what Sorry featured on your instagram or your website. I recommend making a Pinterest board with what you're aiming to create, and this is the mood board. So you send that link to your person, they see 15 images or whatever you have there. Um, if they air all of one vibe and the model has done this before, then they're going to get what you're going for. If they are a variety of things, I would really cut it down to like, five strong ideas that are very similar looking, and you send that over. Not every person you approach is going to work with you. and that's just the way it's going to go. You can't have your heart set on this particular face, this particular person, because maybe they even want to work with you. But they have school or they're going to be out of the country at the time or they have a significant other that's banning them from shooting for a while. I mean, that kind of stuff happens. So, uh, don't take it personal if somebody rejects you and it's possible that they just don't like your work, either. And I have had people I worked with in recent years that if I had approached them in 2010 they would not have worked with me because the quality of my work improved. The things that I'm able to do has changed. And the things that they're looking for in their own portfolios, or just the kind of work opportunities they're looking for has changed as well. 4. General Model Photography Terminology: in this section. I want to talk to you about some terminology related to the modeling industry. There's a lot of words that if you're going to start communicating with models, it's valuable to know the terminology and know what you're talking about, because the more you sound like you know what you're talking about, the better the response will be from people who have been doing this for a long period of time. So the first thing I want to talk about is the word trade or TF, and this simply means that money is not going to change hands between the photographer in the model or the photographer and the hair makeup artist. But you as a photographer. Oh, photographs to whoever is trading with you. A lot of times people complain that they do trade and they get nothing out of it, meaning they don't get any photos out of it. And sometimes they get nothing out of a trade shoot because the pictures were unusable or they were unusable because they were bad or they were low resolution or they were unflattering, like they just weren't things that would go into a model's portfolio or the hair and makeup artist portfolio. When I do trade with somebody, I do my best to make sure that they're happy about the experience, that they got something out of it. Andi, I also make sure when I do trade with somebody that I make sure I got something out of it because, uh, there is nothing more discouraging. Well, I shouldn't say nothing more discouraging, but there is very highly discouraging to spend time and effort on shoots that you get nothing out of. What would be more discouraging is like an incredibly negative experience. But we can get into that The TF portion of that terminology refers trade for so it might have more letters behind it TF CD meeting you, oh person at actual physical CD or T F. P is time for prints, but a lot of the communications I've had with people just say TF trade for, and it's kind of understood in this era that it's mostly going to be digital images of a certain resolution and a certain number. You really should specify that stuff in advance. I don't always do it. I make sure that people will get something. The neighborhood of like 10 images if I'm trading with them and I know other photographers who the number is much lower, like you'll get three fully edited images. If you trade with them. I feel like that's a really low number, and hopefully you is the photographer. Take more than three great pictures during whatever session you do. A test shoot is kind of like trade. But oftentimes, if there's costs involved in a test shoot or a collaboration than the model and the photographer will split costs. So if a studio needs to be rented or a hair and makeup artist needs to be hired, maybe the model pays for half of that. Hmm, You A is short for hair and makeup artist. If somebody asks you if there's going to be an H M. U N set, they don't mean is there going to be one single person who does both hair and makeup? They just mean, is there anybody that's doing either? And then you could be specific and say, Well, I have an emu A, which is makeup artist. They don't have a hairstylist, so either do your own hair. Or maybe if you know somebody who can participate, then you ask them. But H. M. U is the general overall term for the hair and makeup team. A model release is something that I feel like you should have on every shoot, and sometimes you get models who want to see this model release in advance. There's a lot of generic ones on the Internet and certainly from stock agencies. You can get a good generic model release to work with, but you should have them because not only is it protect you and make sure that you're able to use the images after the shoot. You don't want people coming back and saying, You know what? I don't really feel like I want these to be seen anywhere. And if you don't have a model release than there is no sort of legal documents, even though you are the the copyright owner of all photographs, it's good to have a legal document that says you can do what you need to do with these photographs. It's in writing. They signed it so I don't so forth. I haven't really had a problem with people and model releases. Early on, I met a single model who said I'm not signing anything until I read it, even though it was the most standard generic release that I downloaded. And, of course, that model had a lot of other problems throughout the shooting and throwing away the photos you know, live and learn. You can have them sign in the beginning of the process if you like. I generally have people sign it at the end of the shoot, and on occasions when I forget about it, I try and follow up with the model, email it or mail it in physical mail to make sure I have a signed copy of the Moderate Ease . Without the model release, you're not able to put your photographs in stock, which is something that you might not want to do right now, but you might want to do someday. You might face some problems getting the work published. You might not, but they say it's always a good thing to have model release. It's standard practice and models expected to happen 5. Set Terminology: studio shoots and location shoots. A studio takes place in the studio. You might own the studio. You might rent it. You might be doing some sort of trade with the studio to help promote it. Location means that you're going to go somewhere that is outdoors or even like somebody's apartment. If I was to shoot in my home studio, I might let them know it's a home studio because that's a little bit of a location and a studio. A model is going to expect different things when they show up at either any studio or location. If they're in a studio, they generally feel a little bit safer because it's private. And if you're not the owner of a studio than they know, it's pretty unlikely that you have, like, hidden security cameras all over the place. And I say that almost like a joke. But it's true when people go to someone's house, um, they don't know what to expect, and it's a little bit more shady, whether this is likely safe place to enter or not. So when you do a location shoot, some problems that come up are one. It's not private, too. There are people that might watch or interfere with what you're doing. And three in general, they're going to be things that happen on a location shoot that are kind of out of your control. Sometimes they're good things, like somebody walks along with an exotic animal and says, Hey, you can use this an issue that's happened to me before. Other times it might be you thought you had this place all to yourself. But there's like a kid's birthday party next to it or rain. You know, bad weather happens on location shoots all the time. A mood board is simply a collection of images that are trying to tell the other people that you're working with what kind of images you want to make. A common way to create a mood board is to go on Pinterest and collect a bunch of images and then send the link to somebody that counts as a mood board. You can also use an app on your phone or Photoshopped to assemble a collage of images. And not only do you send that to the other people that you're going to be working with Miller's, the models that makeup artists and so on. But you might print it out. You might keep it with you. A lot of times I've created a mood board and then I've printed it, and I've kept it on set. So when we've shot everything we thought we were going to shoot, we were. We still have time and we'll look at the piece of paper and say, Okay, what do you think? Can we do any of these things? And it turns out a lot of times on my mood boards. It's simply like a particular gesture or a particular activity with a prop that we have neglected to shoot and we shoot it. We shoot our version of it. We don't do direct copies of things that are on the mood board, but typically that's where we get a lot of our better material. We use our inspiration and executed. A call sheet is a list of information that contains the names of everybody involved in the shoot and all of their contact info and then a call. Time is when you're supposed to arrive, so if you have a model booked for two hours, but they're going to get hair makeup done, their call. Time might be a little bit early, or you might have it understood between you and the model that even though they are booked for two hours, one hour of that will be spent in the makeup chair. You should also make sure that the hair and makeup artists understand the time limits they have on their job because a lot of times a hair makeup artist that I worked with might go over, and the model only has 30 minutes to shoot 15 minutes to shoot. And that is a very unhappy situation, particularly with me. If I am paying for the model to be there to ours and they spend one hour, 45 minutes in the chair because hair makeup artists decided to be a little chatty or a little slow, that is a huge problem. 6. Sky SF Location Model Shoot: I want to talk to you about a shoot I did with my friends Sky. She is a Northern California model who I met in Los Angeles last year. We shot kind of dark fashion stuff. I was still in my fashion studios, so I felt like this is something I wanted to have a portfolio of. Now that I don't have my fashion studio, I'm just more interested in making the kind of art that I want to see. And I also wanted to experiment with my new camera, which is the low, mow, instant wide it takes in stacks white film from Fuji. And so I went to San Francisco and I got in touch with Sky, maybe a week ahead. It wasn't like a super long process because we were familiar with each other was just like a couple of emails back and forth. She picked a really cool spot, which is next to the Presidio in San Francisco, is also makes to the Golden Gate Bridge. So we had that. It's like a backdrop. It didn't show up in the photos, but it was kind of inspirational for me. Toe have, like this historical military site and the Golden Gate Bridge in the background. So I'm going to turn it over to sky, though, because I feel like one of the things that we did cool on the shoot Waas. We played with two difference styling looks and the styling I left up to the model. She's a designer herself, so she had a bunch of leather goods, not my particular favorite thing to shoe leather, because mainly because I'm a vegetarian. But she also had a lot of black material, which works well with the kind of black and white shots that I like to do. And then she had some colorful stuff with meat textures in sequins, which they have sparkle to them, obviously. But I use a star filter on my lens so that sparkle added an extra special effect to some of what we did. So let me turn over to sky, and you can hear her opinion on how photographer should approach models regarding styling. Hi, I'm Sky and I model and beautiful Northern California and Los Angeles back and forth. Uh, yeah, it's just when you work with somebody for the first time, it's always kind of ah, guessing game you get to know each other. You look at each other's portfolios, and you kind of have have a feeling for what they five for what they enjoy, based on just who they work with, general mood of their imagery. But then, once you actually interact with that person, shoot with get a feel for who they are behind the image, you kind of know more what you can bring and get away with and things that you know they can make work. Whereas another photographer might not be able, Teoh create an image that vibes well with what you have. I would say that anything that doesn't look like what I have on right now is modeling stuff . This is all that I wear pretty much every day, just black jeans and a T shirt. Anything beyond that that comes into my closet. I only keep her photo shoot purposes. Once I shoot it two or three times, I give it away. Don't need it. Pass it on to the next model next photographer and it just makes its way around the photo shoot community I've swapped with other models and photographers are constantly kind of giving things you exchange. And I, um, personally, I don't really shock, especially for shoots. I do think strictly on a SWAT donation and kind of inherited spaces from friends and family . 7. Genre Terminology: there's terminology that's directly related to the genres of shooting. So let's tackle the overall sort of fashion industry. First there's editorial shoots, which are meant for publication, and they're meant to have a little storytelling component to them. And generally they're not trying to sell things in editorial shoots. There's lifestyle shoots, which generally don't take place in a studio, but more in a normal environment. It could be an urban environment. It could be around the house. It could be a rural environment, but it's meant to showcase people doing things that they do on a sort of natural regular basis. There's high fashion modelling, and a lot of people are confused about high fashion. This is really meant to showcase one off types of clothing and things that are incredibly expensive and custom couture and generally high fashion models are of a certain height. They are 5859 of their women, and if they're men, they're in the neighborhood of like 6162 It is very rare that you see shorter people in any kind of high fashion modelling, and if you do see them in a magazine, it's generally because they're famous they're somebody like Scarlett Hansen. Something of that nature. It's not impossible to work with short models when you're doing high fashion kind of shoots , but in general, the industry prefers people of a certain height. And if you get the agency route, you will likely find Most of the models who are involved in the fashion industry are 5859 female, 61 16 male If they are actors, voice of artists, actresses, that kind of thing, they generally are a little bit on the shorter side. For shoots that involve nudity, implied means that is an implied of nude shoot. It doesn't mean that it shows things. It means that it's kind of covered up, distorted, blocked by other things. The model may be nude during the shoot, but they are likely covering up the parts that would get you an R rating in a film. Figure modeling doesn't necessarily mean that it is a nude shoot, but it's generally understood that it would be on alongside figure modeling is body escapes . These air generally studio shoots where there's kind of like a mysterious lighting Teoh, and you're showing some curves of a person, but not necessarily everything, and you're trying to introduce a little bit of mystery into the shoot. Glamour modelling is deliberately sexy. It might be nude. It might just be in lingerie or other kind of like a bedroom boudoir attire with glamour modelling. There generally is a lot of hair makeup involved in it, and if you do a shoot that's intended to be glamour modelling. But you have poor hair makeup or you have no hair makeup. It tends to feel kind of cheap and trashy. So the more that you can accentuate the glamour aspect of a glamour shoot, the better off you are. Art nudes are generally fully nude, and they're meant to evoke some kind of emotion or concepts. Fashion nude is not necessarily entirely nude, and in fact, it has a lot more off styling. Teoh. You find a lot of fashion nude in magazines like Vogue, and generally there is some clothing or heavy duty styling involved. If you're going to do a shoot that involves any kind of nudity, it's very important to lay out what kind of nudity it is in advance. There are tons of models who are comfortable with fashion nudes but no glamour news. And if you don't know the difference, you're gonna have an unhappy model and your name might end up on the black list. On the black list is a list of photographers who made models feel uncomfortable who were generally bad people in issued. Sometimes that badness comes from misunderstandings. So if you lay it out all in advance and you have good communication, then you are going to avoid a lot of the problems on set. 8. Photographic Behavior Terminology: chipping is simply when a photographer gets so excited about their photographs that they act like a chimp. So they have the camera. They take the picture. They look at the back ago who? Ah, and maybe they don't make those sounds. But that's what chipping is. It really slows down the photographic process. If you are checking the back of your camera every single time, you are making a shot. So it is definitely to be avoided. If you're somebody who looks at the LCD screen between every single shot, try and stop doing that. Work with the manual controls, set up your lighting so you take a couple test shots, you get the lighting right, and then you can go really fast. Spray and pray is when a photographer turns the camera on Teoh the burst mode, and they take like 100 photos each time they press the shutter, click, click, click, click, click. And they hope that something good comes out of it. I have model friends who tell me they're holding a pose, and the photographer is taking 15 16 photos of them in a row. Doing that same pose attire is not changing position the models not changing position. It's very weird, and one thing you is a photographer need to do when establishing sort of like a comfort level with your model is also let them feel like you are professional and you know what you're doing. When you're doing spray and pray when you're chipping, it feels like you don't know what you're doing. It feels like you are somebody who just bought the camera and are having fun with a model. But you might be going over your time, and you might be making some horrible mistakes and taking some horrible photos. There's a lot of things you can do to ruin a shoot and degrading the confidence the model has in you as the artist as a photographer is a big mistake, which leads us to our last term, and that is a G W C. That is a guy with a camera and GW Seas are known in the modeling industry as people who don't take great photos. I had a friend who recently, uh, I had a friend who recently retired model who let me know that most of the paid gig she got were with G W sees because they were the ones who were more willing. Teoh actually pay money for the models, and the people who are professional are really good at what they did. Usually tried to trade or finagle something else because they kind of operated on their own arrogance, I guess. Or they operated on their own talents. I should say G W sees aren't bad guys and at one point, everybody who is a photographer, including the really famous people, you know where once G W. Sees guys or girls with a camera, they got a camera. They didn't know what they were doing. They didn't know how it imposed people correctly or how to light them correctly or how to edit the photos in the computer correctly. They just knew that they were interested in this particular hobby, and they knew that they could book a model and the model would take their money. And, you know, GW sees aren't necessarily bad people. But if you hear that term, it generally refers to a less talented hobbyist. So if you think you're in GW, see, uh, it might behoove you to improve your craft. One way to improve your craft is to work with experienced models. Show them the photos that you took and have them pick out the good ones and, you know, ask for assistance in editing or posing. I learned a lot in the beginning when I worked with very experienced people and I asked for their input on ideas styling because if somebody is more experience than you, then there is something you can learn from them. 9. Compensating Models: now of the things that I mentioned who you are, what you want to shoot, Uh, when and where and compensation. The thing that seems to be the most difficult for people to wrap their heads around is the compensation part and make no bones about it. You should compensate the people you work with, whether they're models, hair stylist, makeup artist, one way or another. The trade aspect of a lot of model photography is I'm a photographer. I will take pictures, and then I will provide you with edited images of a certain quantity. Uh, in some people's cases, it's like three fully edited images in other people's It's 10 20 then I feel like if you're a novice and you don't know what you're doing, you'll say, Sure, you can have all the images, But I would never, ever recommend anybody give all the images to somebody that you work with. The concept that the images from the photographer are such an incredible bargaining chip. It strikes me as very unfair. Teoh. A lot of people have been doing this for a long period of time. Now, if you're working with a model and she's just starting out Herbert Folio. Uh, by all means. Your photos are crucial to her or him building that portfolio. But if they have been around a while and they have more than enough photos, they know what to do with. To fill their social media feeds with compensation is really important. And there's many ways to compensate people. So let's start from the top. Number one is money, and a model or photographer or stylist generally has a stated rate, like $100 an hour. It's pretty common if you do not think you can afford that rate. I think if you say I have a budget that is X amount of dollars and you send that to the person, they'll either take it or leave it. But they won't be offended that you said, Hey, I'm a photographer. I think my stuff's great. Uh, will trade for you for nothing, except I'll send you some photos eventually let people know a budget. Let them make the choice whether they will work with you or not, they might say, in the case of $100 an hour person, $150 I'll do two hours of work fine. Or they might say, I'll work $100 for two hours if there is pro hair and makeup involved, so you can see that just because people have rates, that doesn't mean there's other things that won't balance it out. If you can provide a quality top notch shoots concept to a model makeup artist, a hairstylist, a designer, for sure, they will work below their rates. I am not telling you any secrets. I'm not telling you anything that is going to get me in trouble because everybody knows this. In almost any industry, there's movie stars like Tom Hanks, who will work for much less money if they're really invested in the project. There are actors who will work uncredited for scale or for free. Sometimes if they think this project is a cool thing, that they want to be involved in. Beyond money, there is an awful lot of stuff that people can trade and you can trade travel, so plane tickets, flight expenses, lodging expenses, any of that kind of stuff might be of interest to somebody you want to work with. You can trade technology. I know a lot of models who are into photography themselves and really would like an iPad, a camera, a lens to have all their film developed. That kind of stuff is of equal value to cash. You can trade opportunities. So on opportunity to work with somebody who has a much larger social media reach possibly is something that is of interest to certain models. Um, you can trade the opportunity to be published in a particular magazine that you have a connection to. I would never lie and say that. Oh, yeah, for sure. This thing is gonna appear in Time magazine or whatever. But, um, if you are somebody who routinely gets published in about a tattoo magazine that is of note than it's pretty likely that if you shoot some tattooed model that they're going to end up in that magazine could you already have the established connections? And you can prove it another thing that I have found a lot of models desire more, and it works well for me is collaboration on the concept and the idea. So this is where use the photographer actually stepped down off your pedestal and say, Okay, I respect you, artist, artist, and we're gonna cook up the idea together, we're going to assemble it together. We're gonna execute it together, and I'm even going to let you pick which photos are the ones that we end up editing and using. And for models who frequently just get paid to show of place and do what they're told and look a certain way and don't get the choice of which photos get used. That's a big deal if they have some creative control, so many options of how you can compensate people you work with, and I think you have to do it. I don't think it is a good way to go. Teoh be a dictator on your photo shoots. If you're going to work with models and hairstylist and makeup, partisan, all this other things, then at some point you have to be a collaborator. It doesn't cut you down as an artist at all. Think of all the movies and all the people that are involved in the movies. It's not the director who's creating everything and acting and everything. He's working with other people, but it's because you are working with other people that you're able to achieve something greater than what a single person with a single paintbrush, er, a single pencil canoe. You are making something that more than one person is involved in, so you should respect those people's ideas and there need to get something out of it, just like you're getting something out of it. 10. Where Shoot Ideas Come From: pay out there. It's David Miller, Phoenix, Arizona multimedia artist, photographer, animator, video maker, educator. Want to talk to you about where I get a lot of my ideas from. One thing that ties all of these pictures together is that they have an idea. They have a concept. Maybe I had that concept ahead of time before I did the shoot. Maybe it was something that came up in the studio, but they all had a concept. When there's a concept that's an idea that communicates to other people beyond who the person is in the photograph. So that's incredibly important. So I'm gonna break these images down the first time to show you is one of called glass olive and Key, This one I made in 2011 with art model glass Olive. And this is one where the concept actually came from the model, not me. And it wasn't a concept that we decided on ahead of time, but rather inspiration of an object that we found in the studio. And in this case, it was an antique key. This was a studio in Los Angeles that had a lot of bric a BRAC kind of Tim Burton any type of things. The idea that Glass all have had was that this key could be placed on her tongue in a similar fashion that the other mother in the Neil Gaiman written like a animated film, Coraline, has a scene where the villain other mother places a key directly on her tongue. And here's an illustration by one of glass olives and my mutual heroes, Dave McKeen of that very same scene. This is something that nobody else has ever connected to core line. And I think the reason why is because in the film it happens so fast that the key gets tossed on her tongue down her throat that you don't even register it as a strong visual. But it's something that Glass Allah picked up on. Obviously, it's like is a huge influence on me and Neil Gaiman's My Favorite writers did McCain, my favorite artist. This is something that I kind of wish that I thought of, but it was good. That was with a model who thought in a similar fashion to me that we came up with this mutual concept. Another image that was from way back in 2011. This particular image of model looks the show and the video was a devil, you know, by Jesus Jones. Directed by Susana from 1993 Jesus Jones was a band I grew up worshipping. I worshipped all of these British bands that incorporated dance, music and rock n roll. But Jesus Jones was kind of special to me, and this video was the epitome of that coolness for me, all the colors. It's from an album called Perverse, which had this amazing artwork of a Mexican wrestler. And what can I tell you? It's what hit me in 1993. I would have been 16 years old, and that's when a lot of things make the largest impression on you. Um, just having a variety of paint poor own person was a cool idea, but I also got a bunch of bubble machines from Leave Walmart clearance. At the time we hit her with the bubble machines, we drop the paint on her. She had kind of a vinyl outfit. And then I think the last bit of the equation was using these colorful, transparent shower curtains that I also got from Walmart. So there was color in three different directions. It wasn't just a matter of the paint being thrown on the model. This image with Haley J. Is not one that I had ahead of time, but we were in a studio that was also a Children's Playhouse kind of place. And the thing that I noticed in it is that there was a huge variety of hats, and it made me think of a Children's book that I never really liked about hats, hats and more hats. And honestly, it was an idea I didn't even want to do. I mentioned it to the model that I'm like. This is stupid. I don't even like the book. And she is such a helpful person. She's like, You know what? Any idea is a good idea. You might as well try it. We're already here. Only take a second. She filed the hats on Hit behind the curtain. I think it's one of the better images. I took it, Hayley, and it's one that I keep going back to, because it's just odd. I have images where the makeup was inspired by a trip I took, so this particular image of glass olive with the Combs was actually based off of something I saw in a department store window in London. I saw a mannequin with a number of combs piled on and did not take a photo but described it to glass. All of this is what we came up with. I have this kind of cracked antique look with mythological type hair on this model. Any Montgomery because I had recently been to Greece and saw a bunch of the classic Greek sculpture in a museum was really inspired by that. I have this set with Kelly eaten using a bunch of Legos because, honestly, my son and daughter had a lot of Legos at the time, and I was sitting around staring at them, staring at how colorful they were, especially the Legos. Friends set the pink in them and decided to make some objects to go with Kelly Eden, who normally has pink hair. But it was good. That was with a model who thought in a similar fashion to me that we came up with this mutual concept, this image with model Cheyenne Waas, actually based on a music video and music that had a very dissimilar feel. Teoh what we made that music video is U two's mysterious ways, Directed by Stefan Said, Really One of my favorite photographers, videographers in the nineties worked with you to work with New York still has amazing work on his Instagram big fan of his stuff, but there's a particular image with Belly Dancer and the moon hanging in the background, and I've always been a fan of kind of antique maps, antique drawings of celestial bodies. It always amazes me what they were able to come up with in the air before they were able to send satellites and people to the moon and that sort of thing and find out what was really going on up there. So utilize this antique drawing of the moon. Took it from just a Google search for royalty free Antique Moon Planet drawings used a digital projector on the back of this fabric material that I found in the studio, and then the rest of the lights are a combination of gel lighting and his little fiery likes that I got from Home Depot after Christmas and get paid $5 each for those particular lives. Put it all together, came up with something that doesn't quite match what Mysterious ways video has, but that's important to me to not match it. Exactly. When you have inspiration, anything, it needs to be a jumping off point. It cannot be a complete aping of the original idea. Otherwise, I don't think there's a point that I really think we just get inspiration so we can create something new. And one of the things that helps is when you have to ideas and stick them together. Or you get inspiration from things that are not the same as the original source material. It's very important to me that we think about photography, not in terms of it being just photographs, but in the continuum of arts illustration, fashion design, sculpture, filmmaking, motion graphics, graphic design, comics and zines. I hope you will take that into consideration if you are a photographer or another kind of artist looking to incorporate photography into what we do just because it involves technology. Just because it involves a camera does not mean it's locked into that entire thought. Space of photographs must be based on other photographs. I think your work will be a lot better for it if you give it a try 11. Hailey J Phoenix Hairstyling Model Shoot: I want to talk to you about some in stacks that I shot with model Haley J when she came to visit Phoenix in January of this year. And, uh, this is a set that actually came out very different than I envisioned it, because I had just got a new camera. It was thief. Fujian stacks wide, 300 and the day before that I shot these. I had shot my friends Mackenzie Eccles and Anna Corby in Los Angeles, and everything seemed to work fine with this in stacks camera. However, when I got to the studio that I was going to shoot Haley in, it was flashing some kind of crazy air message, changed the batteries, nothing's working and the circumstances under this shoe. Haley was visiting, and the hair was done by my friend. Local hairstylists Jenny Street be also known as the confessions of a hair stylist on her social media channels. Um, so there was like a new element of production into this shoot, and it wasn't something could reschedule when things break. Thankfully, when I do a shoot, I have more than one idea, and I have more than one camera as Faras insects goes. I had my Fuji many 90 neoclassic always have that with me, and I always have extra film for that. So I defaulted to doing something with Haley that I did the last time I worked with here in Portland, which is shoot her in sections. And the thing that we were able to do in this scenario that we weren't able to do in the past is have hair makeup involved and work with a space that I was a little more familiar with when I shot Haley in Portland. It was a dance acting studio. I had no idea it was gonna be that way. And here I've been Teoh Jenny's Hairstyling Salon many times. She also has a big, white, seamless, usually my favorite way to shoot a model these days, just do it against pure white and not have any distracting elements in the background, not figure how toe shoot around, uh, chairs and tables or weird wall textures and stuff that actually take away from the portrait or whatever idea you're trying to execute. So the main thing I did was Hayley here is create photo assemblages, and she had full black bodysuit material and because she also had a really long hair and particularly cool hairstyle this time, The first time I shot her, she just showed up on natural. Um, I wanted to make use of that and sort of play with scale, like have some things close to the camera and things far away, and maybe swap out parts. So instead of what I did with Haley in the past or collage was just make her longer, you know, shoot an extra chunk of leg and have her hands come out towards the camera like so. But this time, I thought was your legs aren't going to be legs your legs, you're gonna be arms. And we did try some other things, like trying to have a cyclops. I shoot it with only a chunk of her face here and only a chunk of her face here, and then try and overlap those. But you know when you can't ah, 100% aim your camera right all the time, Or tell if it's going to be so close that it's going to get blurry like mistakes happen. And because it's film its mistakes, I actually cost you money. It's not like digital stuff where you can make mistakes and then turn around and correct it , like working with only 20 exposures. He's actually, it's a preference of mine. It's like this is either going to be right or it's going to be wrong. And if it's wrong, I'm going to try and make something out of the mistakes rather than have the ability to fix everything all the time. I feel like that has not helped us as creative people, the ability to see everything we're doing as we're doing it and course correct when it's going wrong because it takes away from your cleverness. You is photographer. You as an artist, you need to be clever within the limitations that you have. 12. Styling Advice: in this section. We're going to talk about styling, and there are people whose job it is to style your photo shoots. They're called fashion stylists, and they poll from clothing stores, clothing brands, designers. They have connections to these people. Working with the stylist is great because you can design a mood board on Pinterest and say anything in this genre in this milieu, and they're likely be able to pull together your wardrobe. However, if you already gotten a sense of how complicated that sounds, it can be quite expensive. There are fashion stylists who like to work for trade because it's important that they have a portfolio of what they do. But most of the time, the fashion stylist is somebody who has to be paid for their efforts. And if you are just starting out in model photography, it is very unlikely that you have a portfolio that will catch the attention of a fashion stylist. Even if you write them directly, Uh, Stylist expects the work to be published, and they expect to be published in something that is tangible and riel, and not necessarily a lot of the online publications or websites that masquerade as magazines. So let's start from scratch. So you're beginning photographer and you want to do a shoot that has some styling to it that has a particular aesthetic. Step one. You can pick a model that already showcases this work and has that as their personal aesthetic. So let's say you wanted to get involved in the kind of latex shoot world. There are a lot of models who own those pieces, and if you work with them, will be more than happy to provide their own pieces for a shoot. They already know it fits. They already know they look good in it. That's a good way to start. There's other models that I work with that have a lot of vintage where they're like thrift shoppers. But they're getting the good stuff. They're not getting kind of crummy things that you would get at a garage sale, and that's really useful. When you have something that is historical, it's very easy to set a vibe. It's very easy to complete the rest of the picture. You know that shooting somebody who looks like old schoolmarm because that's what the model had would be a bad idea to shoot this schoolmarm somewhere that doesn't fit at all. Some place with a lot of brushed metal and modern architecture, it just seems and feels like incongruous with the concept. When I was starting out, I worked with a lot of models who were less experienced and did not have a closet full of interesting or cool items. Cool wardrobe pieces. And so what most people do is they turn to goodwill. They turn to savers or any of the other kind of thrift stores. They go out and they buy the thing for a shoot. This is not a bad way to go, but the main issue that you have to watch out for is you might build a portfolio based around random stuff you found at goodwill that you thought look good, not a particular vision or aesthetic. So if you are going to be going the goodwill routes Number one, I would advise actually shopping with the model, and it could be as part of the shoot or ahead of time. Or, you know, maybe you are at the store and you're texting her wardrobe pieces because there's nothing quite like showing up to a shoot with a plunge of wardrobe that the model looks at and says , I'm not wearing that. I'm not wearing that. I can't fit in that kind of stuff. So, um, you might have to do a pre shoot shopping trip with your model, if that is the way you want to go. There are wardrobe pieces that are kind of like perennial favorites and almost always look good in any photograph that I found. And that tends to be things that are all black and possibly long sleeve. Now, if you are aiming for more of a boudoir or sexy style than what I'm telling, you might not fit. But I will say that black tends to go with anything and a person in a long blacks, Uh, and a person in a long and a person dressed in black can fit into almost any environment, whether it's a natural environment, whether it is a modern environment, whether it's a studio atmosphere and it's like multiple colors behind them or just pure white Black will go with nearly anything 13. Running The Set Pt 1: in this video. I want to talk to you about running the set and make no bones about it. Even though you're a photographer, you're also a director. You are the person organizing everything for shoots. You are the person that if anybody has questions, they're gonna ask you. And if anything goes wrong, they're gonna look atyou to solve those problems. So you are the person who runs the set, and you need to act like the person who runs the set. What does that mean? Does that mean you have to be a tyrant and crack the whip all the time? No. Of course there will be instances where maybe somebody's running super late. And if you're renting a studio, that's not something that can really happen because the studio has a certain closing time or a cut off point. So sometimes you might have to be the bad guy and say, Well, you know, you're running so late that we can't use you were just gonna let it go because a few times it's happened to me where somebody showed up really late, for as I mentioned in one of my other videos a hair and makeup team spent so long on the model that they did not have any time to actually get any good material. And if I were paying that model, I can't remember if it was a trade shoot or it was were money exchanged hands. But whatever the circumstances, that doesn't help me out. To set everything up and then have other people take so long at their job that we can actually get anything out of it now what I really mean by running the set is creating a professional, comfortable atmosphere to do your shoot. What does that mean? Well, if you are doing a shoot that involves nudity, uh, you can't act like a creep, and you can't follow people around. And people have the right to privacy when they change or get ready for issues. It involves having the temperature at such a temperature that it's comfortable for the model. I mean, if you're a photographer and you're fully clothed, which I hope you are, but if the model is, it involves having the temperature at something that is comfortable for somebody who is wearing a lot less than you are. It involves playing music that creates like a fun and productive atmosphere and not one of hostility or boredom. And the best way to get music that makes your model model really well and be enthusiastic about the shoot is to ask them what they like to listen to. So I understand what it's like. I've got music that gets me going and it puts me in the right vibe. But now there are plenty of instances where I think, like I'm really tired. I gonna play something that's going to get me excited about the shoot. I understand that. But in general, when you create an atmosphere of comfort and professionalism, it is for the other people who are around you. You have to be the big boss, not the person who's a dictator. So when you create comfortable atmospheres on set, when everybody's like happy to show up and they're happy to do whatever it is they have to do, whether it's modeling for the hair and the makeup or the designing and when you have all the paperwork ready for signing and you have pens and you let people know when they might see the images, or what the image is being used for that kind of stuff like that is how you get referred to other models, other hairstylists. That is how you get people to share your work on social media, if that's what you want them to do. But I think if I go into a store, that store should want me as a client to talk about them and say nice things about them and say, You know what? It was clean. I love the music. They had their it smell nice. The people behind the counter asked if I needed any help. You know what they did Help me if I needed it. That is, what you need to do is a photographer on set, even though you're the person who's organizing the shoot. Never, ever take the arrogant attitude that this is about me on. You guys have no valid opinions. You guys don't have any feelings. I want you to do exactly what I say and then see you later. You're not going to get very many good shoots out of that and you're not gonna get any good recommendations. 14. Running the Set Pt 2: Another issue about comfort on the set is don't bring up concepts that are show left field from what you've already discussed, and this generally happens in the kind of shoot where it's like a straight model shoot on the model is dressed and all this on the photographer introduces the idea of nudity into it . If you didn't discuss it ahead of time, then you probably shouldn't bring it up in the middle of the shoot. If you want to work with his model again and you want to work with him in that context at the end of the shoot when you're wrapping up, maybe talk about it for the next time you book them if it all went well. But when it happens in the middle of the shoot, it is borderline sexual assault and models really don't like it. And it's like flipping a switch where all of a sudden things were going well and then they're not going to go well after that hasn't happened to me, but it's happened to plenty of other photographers, and I certainly hear about it all the time from my model friends that it was all good until the photographer asked for this thing, and maybe it wasn't nudity. Maybe it was something that was little more dangerous or something that would get them really dirty. You know, maybe there's like some incredibly dirty spots like a swamp and photographers is Hey, why don't you go get into that swamp? And you've been shooting on dry land all this time and they want you to do it in your regular clothes? You know, if that's brought up in the middle of the shoot, then not not a good thing. Uh, the rest of the time is going to have this weird dark cloud over the head of it. I have been on shoots. Were have been shooting on dry land, were next to kind of like a river and Scott mud and the models and adventurous type. And she says, Who do you want me to go in there? You know, if it's their idea, by all means, you're welcome to indulge it. But if you are pressuring somebody to do something that is out of bounds, dangerous, dirty, uh, not what was discussed agreed upon ahead of time, then you are going to have a very uncomfortable atmosphere one last thing about running the set. I know I sound a little negative in this section, but, uh, it can be super fun and it can be a party, and it can be a wonderful art making experience. One thing that you have to learn is how to make quick decisions. So when the model brings two pieces of wardrobe and says, which do you like better? This one or this one? You have to be able to look at that and answer a definitive answer and have a reason for your answer. Your answer could be a simple as I like that one better. Your answer could be as simple as you know what. That one looks better to me or I don't like the color of this other one. But a lot of our decisions are made for us. If we think about how visual artworks and the elements of art, which are color, rhythm, texture, shape, line value, these things have solved a lot of problems for me. If somebody holds two outfits up and they say, which do you like? And one has a color that clashes with the colors that were shooting against color is saving if one has more of a vintage or rugged texture, and everything else is smooth and shiny. I might actually go for that one if it makes my model stand out against it. Or I might saying, No way, because the concept is a sleek and futuristic and you're showing me something that is more cowboy. So learn a little bit about the elements of art. Know yourself enough that you know what you like, and you can make some quick snap decisions on set that will stop you from having decisions you'll regret later times that I didn't make decisions. Sometimes a makeup artist said, You know what? I'm gonna put some little flourish on a person. I'm gonna add this upside down thing or there. And if I had been a better decision maker at the time, I would have said, No, I don't really like it. It just doesn't seem like it fits in, or I want to have a little more general look, not something that is so distinct that I can only get one or two pictures out of it. I've found that if I have and more generalized look, then if the person changes outfit or something in the middle of the shoot. I get a lot more usable photos out of that than if they have a I don't know, a big star in their cheek, and we can't take it off. So no matter how many outfits the person changes into, they always have a big star on their cheek. That's not something I want to have my website or my portfolio full. Be respectful, make decisions the pleasant to be around, the considerate of the temperature and their musical tastes and their needs. And in mindful of time. If you have to set an alarm, go ahead and do that. But going on and on and on, shooting for a long period of time without a break, without realizing that you've gone over the agreed amount of time. That is the last bit of advice I have for you. You are the set runner. Act like an adult professional and have a good time 15. Model photography wrap up: guys want to thank you so much for making it to the end of the course. The last bit of advice I want to give you is you should always look at leveling up your work. So if you are starting your model photography journey, working with people, you know people in your family or family friends, Uh, at some point I invite you to try booking a professional model, be it through an agency or being a traveling indie model, but somebody who has a lot of experience. And when you have that shoot, be open to any ideas the model has because part of why you are booking the experience model is to learn from them and to elevate your own work, not just to have somebody in front of the camera that you can tell, you know, do whatever I want you to do. That's not the way it works, so I highly invite you to look into raising your own levels. Whether it's booking experienced models, whether it's getting more professional hair and makeup services or cooler wardrobe involved different locations, things that are a little exotic, it might cost little money, but in the long run. It's going to make your photography that much better because you've invested in it and you challenge yourself to be better Once again. Thanks for watching. Check out the rest of the tutorials on my teaching channels. How a lot about photography, other kinds of art. And I will talk to you next time. Uh