logo
RSS Twitter YouTube

Preparing For a Model-Shoot

Preparing For a Model-Shoot

By Micheal Charles

No matter what type of shoot you're planning, it's always a good idea to have a pre-shoot checklist. Over time, a simple list will save you a great deal of time and effort. Since most of my photography includes working with models, my pre-shoot checklist includes some things that wouldn't be necessary for a photographer who isn't working with models.

It's important to leave enough time between going over the checklist and the start time of the shoot. By giving yourself enough time, most problems that the list identifies can be solved before the shoot. What follows are some actions that I typically include on my pre-shoot checklist:

CONFIRM WITH THE MODEL

If you have any question in your mind regarding the reliability of the model, this is the time to take care of it. By this time, you will already have discussed the basics of the shoot with her and given her directions to the location. Still, it is often a good idea to give her a call on the day of the shoot to make sure everything is still on as planned. Fortunately, I can say that most models (whether professional or amateur) are responsible and will arrive within five minutes of the scheduled time.

STRAIGHTEN UP

I like to give my models a very clean environment where they can do their hair, makeup, and work with their wardrobe. It's a fairly simple thing to do, and I guarantee that the models will notice it. Over the years, many models have told me that very few photographers take the time to do this, and how much they appreciate the photographers who do.

GET THE PAPERWORK IN ORDER

Getting the necessary paperwork taken care of at every shoot is of prime importance. Without a signed model release and two forms of ID from the model (at least one of them being a photo ID), you won't be able to sell your work. To make sure everything gets done, it's a good idea to put the paperwork in a spot where it can't be missed (along with a reminder note to make copies of the IDs).

CHECK BATTERIES

Most of the equipment you'll use during a typical shoot will require batteries. All rechargeable batteries should be fully charged when you begin the shoot. In addition, I highly recommend that you have a fully charged spare battery for your camera. Other pieces of equipment - such as light meters, remote controls and sync systems also require batteries.

CHECK CAMERA SETTINGS

Make sure that your camera settings are appropriate for the specific shoot you're preparing for. A few things you'll want to check are white balance settings, ISO settings, and proper file format and size (JPEG, Raw, etc.). At this point, you should also check your memory cards to confirm you have enough memory for the upcoming shoot.

CLEAN LENSES

Modern lenses possess amazing optics and are capable of producing images with extreme sharpness and clarity. However, no matter how well they are designed, you are still responsible for keeping the outer glass clean and dust-free. If there are smudges, fingerprints, or dust particles present on the exposed glass at the time of an exposure, all the technology in the world won't be able to correct it. To give you the best chance of capturing the sharpest images possible, it's a good idea to clean your lenses before each shoot.

TEST LIGHTING EQUIPMENT

An hour or two before the scheduled shoot is a good time to check that the lighting equipment you plan to use is working correctly. You'll want to do this well before the shoot so you'll have enough time to fix anything that isn't working properly. Lighting equipment can be very temperamental and delicate. Often, what may initially seem to be a major problem can be fixed simply by tinkering a bit with the cords or the connections. This is also a good time to check that all sync and remote systems are working correctly.

ARRANGE THE FIRST SET

It will save you a great deal of time if you prepare as much as possible for the first set of images before your model arrives. This includes arranging the set and setting up the lighting layout for that particular set.


About The Author

Michael Charles is a professional photographer based in Los Angeles. For over a decade, Michael has been shooting exclusively in the world of nude, erotic, and adult-oriented photography. His work has been featured in hundreds of national and international publications and appears on a wide variety of prominent websites.

From his years spent photographing the world's most beautiful women, Michael has acquired a definitive knowledge regarding what it takes to succeed within the field of erotic photography. For more information, visit Money Shot Books

Camera Bag

Clear

Your camera bag is empty. To add a camera or lens click on the star next to its name.

Neocamera Blog is a medium for expressing ideas related to digital cameras and photography. Read about digital cameras in the context of technology, media, art and the world. Latest posts links:

Updates

    2014.12.09

  • 2014.12.09

    Fujinon XF50-140mm F/2.8R LM OIS WR Review

    Fujinon XF50-140mm F/2.8R LM OIS WR Review

    Fujinon XF50-140mm F/2.8R LM OIS WR Review added to the Fuji X-T1 Photographer Experience. This is the top-of-the-line X-mount lens with constant maximum aperture in a weathersealed and freezeproof body with built-in optical image-stabilization.

  • 2014.12.06

  • 2014.12.06

    Fuji X-T1 Graphite Hands-On

    Fuji X-T1 Graphite Hands-On

    The Graphite Edition of the excellent Fuji X-T1 adds an ultra-fast electronic-shutter with 1/32000s maximum speed and a number of improvements in a new smooth and highly durable finish.

  • 2014.12.02

  • 2014.12.02

    Nikon D750 Review

    Nikon D750 Review

    The first video-optimized full-frame DSLR features a 24 MP CMOS sensor with ISO 50 - 51200 range, 6.5 FPS and full 1080p HD video at 60 FPS, with stereo sound and AF-tracking. A 100% coverage viewfinder and large 3.2" tilting LCD with 1.2MP allow precise framing.

  • 2014.11.28

  • 2014.11.28

    Best Digital Cameras of 2014

    Best Digital Cameras of 2014

    The best digital cameras of 2014, selected among each class and for various types of photography.

  • 2014.11.11

  • 2014.11.11

    Nikon 1 J4 Review

    Nikon 1 J4 Review

    The smallest Nikon mirrorless packs an 18 MP high-speed CMOS sensor capable of 60 FPS drive and full 1080p HD video at 60 FPS, plus slow-motion video up to 1200 FPS.

  • 2014.10.27

  • 2014.10.27

    Panasonic Lumix DMC-GM1 Review

    Panasonic Lumix DMC-GM1 Review

    Uniquely compact mirrorless that features a 16 MP LiveMOS Four-Thirds sensor with ISO 125-25600 range, 1/16000s-60s, 5 FPS drive and full 1080p HD video. Full manual controls and a very complete feature-set.

  • 2014.10.10

  • 2014.10.10

    Fuji X30 Review

    Fuji X30 Review

    Premium compact with a bright 28-112mm F/2-2.8 mechanical-zoom lens and a 12 MP 2/3" X-Trans CMOS II sensor with built-in Phase-Detect AF. Now offers a large 0.65X magnification 2.8 MP 100% coverage EVF with Eye-Start sensor. Dual control-dials and full 1080p HD @ 60 FPS.

  • 2014.09.22

  • 2014.09.22

    Expert Shield Screen Protector Review

    Expert Shield Screen Protector Review

    Expert Shield Screen Protectors offer scratch protection with a crystal clear covering that uses no adhesive.

  • 2014.09.02

  • 2014.09.02

    Canon EOS Rebel T5 Review

    Canon EOS Rebel T5 Review

    Entry-level DSLR with 18 MP, 9-Point Phase-Detect AF, 3 FPS drive and full 1080p HD video in a compact body. The lowest-cost Canon DSLR yet.

  • 2014.08.08

  • 2014.08.08

    Nikon D810 Review

    Nikon D810 Review

    Professional DSLR with anti-alias-filter-free 36 MP CMOS sensor. Ultra-low ISO 32 to 51200. 5 FPS and 1080p @ 60 FPS. Large 0.7X magnification 100% coverage OVF. All new processing-pipeline and Highlight-Weighed metering.