How the Pros prep for a photoshoot

I got an email this morning from a client needing to reschedule because it is SNOWING!!! But she was really disappointed and said, “you know how much we prep for these things.” Even though we were only bumping the shoot 4 days she had concerns. So if you are scratching your head and saying, “how could someone prep so much for a headshot that FOUR DAYS could really make a difference??” I will let you know all of the things she had done to prepare. This client happened to be an actress, but I will also add some prep ideas for models that might be doing more full body shooting.

My client specifically had done a couple of things:

  1. stopped drinking wine and salt to minimize swelling and clear her skin
  2. had her hair cut and colored right before the shoot to make sure she had NO roots
  3. had a facial to give her a fresh face
  4. lost a few pounds through cutting out junk food; extra pounds show on the face too.
  5. had her eyebrows done for a clean polished look.

Other clients prepare in additional ways:

  1. additional facial waxing, upper lip hair in particular can be hard to edit out.
  2. skin clearing regimins, while it is a bad idea to do something TOTALLY new right before a shoot, a trip to a dermatologist or aesthetician a few weeks before to tackle some skin problems can help.
  3. get a tan or get rid of a tan. Neither should be drastic! too tan is just as bad as too pale. splotchy spray tans can be impossible to edit

For Models:

  1. take care of bikini hair through waxing
  2. shave legs
  3. get mani pedi- clear, classic
  4. moisturize skin all over
  5. EXERCISE and great diet can make you glow right before the big day! talk honestly with your agent or manager about what your measurements need to be ideally for your marketing. Having the correct look can include hitting your measurement goals.

Upon arrival on set:

  1. talk to your photographer about whether you are to show up clean hair and face or if they would like you camera ready (ready with hair and makeup)
  2. DRY hair
  3. some photographers would like your hair voluminous (blow dried with a round brush), and others may want your natural texture. Communicate clearly about this ahead of time.
  4. TAKE YOUR TIME getting ready for your shoot. Give yourself plenty of time for your hair to dry, packing your things, finding the location, parking… etc. If you are doing your own hair and makeup, use this as a guide for the time you should spend: I allot at least an hour for hair and makeup on set.
  5. HAVE FUN!!!
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How to make photographers fall in love.

This is an article I found at The Last Magazine website about why some people are so intriguing to photograph. All models should aspire to be like Stella and really show something spectacular in front of the camera.

Ever since we began back in 2008, we have worked with photographer David Mushegain every issue to bring you a collection of some of the coolest, raddest, hippest people from all around the world. David shoots and gets to know the young kids he meets on his travels, through his friends, or just walking down the street, and we are always happy to share his discoveries with you. Today we begin our weekly postings of David’s Last People, appearing every Wednesday right here.

I first saw Stella Maxwell when I was sitting at the café Le Progress in the Marais in Paris. I had gone to meet my friends Cecile and Emily. We were enjoying a nice drink. I think I was sipping on some warm milk and honey when some of their friends arrived. Stella was among them. I was immediately drawn to her. I would go as far as to say she is one of the most beautiful girls I have ever seen in my life. The only thing I could think about was finding out who she was and having the chance to photograph her. They sat at a table just near ours, since the adjacent ones were occupied. Everyone was leaning across and talking and I took the social atmosphere as my chance to ask Stella if she would allow me to take a photo of her. She told me no, and that she was “camera shy.” I said, okay I understand. Although she eventually allowed me to take one photo. I did not get any contact information as she was not too forthcoming but I had it set in my mind I would see her again. And about a month later I did. I had been in Paris the whole summer as I was doing an exhibition at colette. This gave me time to really explore the city a bit and its inhabitants. Stella could very well have been my highlight. The next time I saw her I asked her if I could come to her house and photograph her for my Vogue Japan monthly model-at-home column. She agreed. Two days later I visited Stella in the 11th arrondissement in her seven-story walk up. I loved the vibe of her apartment and her vibe in general. We shot together all afternoon and evening and it was so awesome. Stella has to be one of the best models I have ever photographed. When discussing photography I often tell people that photographing someone is really a dialogue between you and them. It’s an exchange. Your photo has more to do with what they are giving you than it has anything to do with your own vision or skill. Some models are just magic and I have been blessed to work with a few. For me Erin Wasson, Shalom Harlow, Veruschka, and Susan Eldridge all have this presence. They are just intriguing every day and they can basically do anything and you will get a beautiful photo. Stella is like this. You don’t have to pry the photograph out of her like some hidden treasure. It’s just there for the taking and that is such a gift. I was so lucky to spend a lot of time with Stella after this and really got to know her. She was born in Belgium and grew up in New Zealand. Her parents though are originally from Belfast, Ireland, so she is truly Irish. She likes herself some good electronic music and she has awesome style. I would kind of describe her as tom-boy meets ’80s mod. She has a heart of gold and a very curious mind. I am really hoping we see a lot of Miss Maxwell in the coming seasons because she deserves it and fashion needs a girl like this. I’ve showed her photos around to a few of our favorite fashion insiders and everyone has the same comment. “WOW! WHO IS THIS! SHE LOOKS LIKE AN OLD-SCHOOL SUPERMODEL!” and I totally agree. She’s got it. We shot this photo on the floor at Stella’s apartment in Paris

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