A girl recently asked me if she should fork out $100 dollars or more for a photoshoot? Or how she can get free photos?
I told her this:
Basically I think if you are eager, ambitious and not only want to model to be infront of the camera, but bring ideas to the camera you can sometimes get quality images for free. I work my personality a lot and it pays with me NOT having to pay. I have never paid a photographer, but I have pitched ideas, scouted locations, pulled the clothing and accessories for the shoot from designers I researched and contacted on my own, I have mailed the images to magazines and newspapers my self and proved that if you hustle and prove you are serious that photographers will WANT to work with you. I couldn't afford to pay a photographer so I had to rely on my personality, energy and creative eye to also bring something unique to the shoot. So before you pay try to pitch a photographer your idea. You want to shoot funky hair styles, or a cool handbag you saw, or some hot shoes, include a product, a location, a cool vintage chair, bring an idea to the table and stress how serious you are and that you would like to submit the photographs to a magazine and ask if the photographer tests. Don't always think the photographer is better than you. Or above you. Many photographers are hustling too and trying to get exposed and get their work seen too, so if you can pitch an idea that might bring you both a tear sheet or let them know of your interest in being involved with products, representing brands, and bringing a story to the shoot, not just your face or body, they will be intrigued usually. Just because they have been in a few magazines, or have a portfolio, or shot a few hundred models doesn't mean the photographer is something you should feel Intimidated by. So paying isn't bad because usually with a shoot you arepaying for, you can skip some bullshit because the photographer is now a customer of YOURS and you set the tone of the shoot for what YOU want. But before you hack out the dollars, try to research photographers who shoot for magazines, or with products you want to model.I have never paid a photographer, but I have wasted time, and made some mistakes working with the wrong photographers. Once I researched the location for a shoot at a lounge(who was going to let me shoot their for free), and even got handbags and clothing for the shoot but the photographer I picked never even gave me one photo!!! Can you believe that! It is the truth and it happened because I was careless about who I worked with and if you are bringing your energy to the shoot make sure you at least feel that the photographer is as serious as you are. Another time the photographer pulled the jewelry and we shot at the beach and he submitted the photos to a magazine in Miami and they got published in a 5 page story, sooo by representing your self, hustling and researching, pursuing and trying you will run into a lot of paths, stories, people, places, but go with your GUT Always and IT IS ALWAYS possible to get a portfolio, images, and photographs you need for free, but bring your personality and start approaching photographers not to just TEST, but to try to get something publishing together, bring an idea...and your unique style to the shoot.
Make a mark.
Have a goal, a plan, a purpose when you model, make sure you bring more to the shoot than yourself.