Recently, a photographer asked me “How do you style your shoots?” I realized that I get asked this quite a bit so I figured “BLOG POST!” First, I would like to say that I do not intend to tell you how to run your shoots, this is just what I do and it has worked great for me. I always try to get to know my clients well so that when I style my shoots I can personalize it to fit their amazing personalities.
There are so many benefits to styling a shoot. I like to style shoots because it allows the client to get comfortable with you as you learn about them and it allows you to plan ahead and maximize on shooting time. Plus they really appreciate all the creativity and effort that you put into making their shoot unique. Prior to their session I send them an email with a quick questionnaire to get to know them a little better. I like to find out their hobbies, interest, dislikes and if they have anything that they would like me to incorporate into their session. Once I gather those details, I have all the ammo I need to style a shoot that will reflect them, hold sentimental value to them and look like it belongs in a magazine.
As photographers we tend to have a great imagination, but our clients sometimes don’t. Go the extra mile!!!! Be clear in what you are envisioning. I achieve this by sending them a detailed email with all the info they need to have a great experience for their session. In this email I include : date, time, location, wardrobe, prop suggestions, hairstyle and makeup suggestions with pictures. Although I don’t require professional hair and makeup for my clients, I definitely suggest it since experience has shown me that my clients that took the extra time to get ready arrive with a refreshing sense of confidence and a shine in their eyes. Think about it this way, who wouldn’t want to be pampered, dolled up and then followed around with a camera when they feel the most beautiful? Every photographer knows that photoshop can fix many unwanted blemishes and imperfections. We can all agree that the one thing that you cannot photoshop is confidence. If you aren’t able to offer your clients hair and make up services have a list readily available to them of reputable hair and makeup artist that can get the job done. On the day of the shoot I set up a rack where they can hang all their clothes. I select and put together outfits for him/her with accessories and off we go to have a great time and capture once in a lifetime magazine style images.