Sure, it is nice to look at pretty photos of beautiful models smiling and showing off a clean-cut or All-American feel. But, once in a while, for the sake of creativity as well as breaking the cookie cutter mold, photographers and models might be inclined to take things in a different direction.
If you are interested in making your shots a little more edgy, here are a few suggestions that might help.
Use darker and more intense clothing
Hair and makeup should bring out the harsher elements
Background and lighting can make a big difference
Using angles that emphasize the tougher elements of a model
Modeling and what qualities, physical and non, make a great model is like so many other things, somewhat subjective. So, while it would be overly simplistic and even somewhat disingenuous to assume there is some sort of exact formula for what creates the ideal subject for a model photographer, it is not so when it comes to a given artist or photographer’s preferred qualities in his or her models. That being the case, I have my own particular opinion. And while I don’t think there is any right or wrong here, I do think that whatever works for you can lend itself to amazing art. So, keeping that in mind, here are what I personally consider the three key component for any model.
Willingness to learn and put in the effort
The majority of models don’t start out driving into poses and holding their bodies in flattering positions for a photographer. In fact, the majority clearly need some instruction. When a new model, or even a seasoned one to some degree, is willing to learn about his or her craft and willing to be professional in their approach to everything from punctuality to commitment to personal upkeep and hygiene, it goes a long distance in a modeling career.
No matter how hot a girl or guy may be, if they show up to shoots with a bad attitude or have a boring or unpleasant disposition, this can be a major problem. Not only will it make them hard to work with but it will show up in the shots as well.
Contrary to popular opinion sometimes, nobody wants a cookie-cutter model. When a person has just some sort of “it” quality to who they are it really makes a huge impact on how they model. This could be something physical, something about their attitude or even a personal style or look of some kind. there is not really any specific element here as that this is what makes it unique.
Notice here that “looks” are not in the top 3. Sure, attractiveness is important for models but I would put it fourth as that the other features listed create a type of visual appeal in anyone who is even moderately pretty or handsome.
Black and white photos can be beautiful…
but at times, it can be a challenge to bring out the features in the shots without the use of color. Here are a few tips that you may find useful.
Make use of contrast
If your subject is dark, try to shot it against a lighter backdrop. Do the first if the subject is lighter.
Capture shadowing a light streaks
Featuring these elements can showcase depth and texture.
Use different types of black and white
Most photo editing software allows for a number of different levels and variations of black and white. Check out the different options rather than just setting for a default setting.
If you even causally follow entertainment news, you will almost undoubtedly have heard about the three covers of this years Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue. And, whether you are a fan or not, there is one thing that is indisputable. This issue made history.
Let’s start of by saying that three are essentially three things that mean a female model (and a photographer) has reached the pinnacle of success in their career. If you are a runway model or photographer or one who works in the fashion clothing modeling, it doesn’t get bigger than working for Victoria Secret. If you are in the glamour genre, no matter how you may or may not feel about it, Playboy is tops. And finally, if you’re a swimsuit model, you know you’re reached the top when you appear in the pages of the SI Swimsuit Issue.
So, in case you haven’t heard, the 2016 edition has for the first time featured three covers each featuring a different model. That in itself is new but even more importantly on both an artistic and social level these covers include:
- The first plus-size cover model (Ashley Graham)
- The first athlete primarily rather than model (Ronda Rousey)
The third cover is of your classic beauty and traditional model Hailey Clauson.
The editor of the issue MJ Day explained it like this –
There are a ton of different file types out there when it comes to images and photos. Some that you might know are .jpeg, .gif, .tiff, .raw and more.
If for some reason you want to, or have the need to, convert images from one format to another, maybe due to file type restriction on social media, file size issues or something else, this handy little site can help you.
Working with pets in photography can be quite a challenge.
In my opinion, one of the best approaches to take to this type of photography is to look at the subject as almost like working with a small child. Why? Well the obstacles you may face are often the same. Both children and pets move around a lot, have short attention spans and sometimes have difficult times when it comes to taking direction. Here are a few photography tips that might help.
Make sure you have a lot of light
If you have lots of light it will make it easier for you to shoot at a proper exposure level with a reasonable shutter speed. This will help to reduce blur if the pet moves quickly.
Having toys or something that can visually stimulate a pet or engage one of their other senses may help to keep the animal more focused which will help to make your job easier too.
Shoot fast and often
Because animals move frequently, shooting in burst mode or without attempting to adjust setting between shots will make in more likely that you will end up with some shots you like.
My dog Cinny.
I used to rent a space to use as a studio for my model and portrait photography work in Pittsburgh. But after a little while, I noticed I wasn’t using it enough to maintain a regular shooting location for the price I was paying. So, if anyone else is also in need of a shooing space from time to time but nothing more, these ideas might help you with some alternative options for indoor shooting.
These vacation rentals are much like hotels except you have a wider variety of options like using an entire house or apartment. The cost is often reasonable and the variety of locations is wide.
You can check it out at airbnb.com
While these are more expensive and have some major drawbacks including a negative reputation for legitimate photo sessions, they are an option that might work at times.
Sometimes commercial store or office space owners may be willing to allow you to use their space for a short period of time so that they are at least making a few bucks off of a vacant location. You might also be able to arrange a trade with them to provide photos for rental ads in exchange for shooting space.
Bars or clubs
Often during the times when these establishments aren’t operating, the owners or managers may be willing to allow you to use the space for your photography work.
Office rental space
Some groups and companies like Regis rent out spaces for meeting and events. This is a good way to find a safe and professional atmosphere for your shoots.
If a fried or family member has an unused room at their home you can always ask them if they’d let you use it for your art.
Just a note:
Be sure you are on the same page with the owner of establishment when it comes to the content of your photography work and the images you plan to shoot at the location. This is a major part of being professional and not getting yourself into any legal issues.