Have you seen the gorgeous styled shoot done by the lovely Annie Taylor Hall for our last #THEITCollective series? Read on below as Annie shares her top 5 (and super simple) tips on how to plan THE perfect styled shoot. xo
Whenever I plan a stylized shoot, I have to decide a couple factors. Do I need hair and make up done? Do I need a stylist? Clothing vendors? What type of models? Etc.
With that being said some of my tips for putting together a stylized shoot is:
1 | Believe in Moodboards
For those of you who don’t know what a moodboard is, or might contain, they’re basically images of anything that fit the “mood” of your shoot. Whether it’s pictures of people, make up, color palettes, interior or exterior settings, etc. By doing a moodboard it will help establish expectations within your shoot. Typically I put this together before I contact any vendors or models, I like to be able to show them exactly what I want from the get-go. I also want to note, when I do collaborative shoots especially, I’m always open to having them dip in and explore their creative side as well, I never try to dictate exactly how it’s going to look. By using a moodboard, they get an idea of what guidelines I’m looking for and want to stay in, but feel free enough to use some of their creative ideas.
2 | Finding Your Vendors
Once my moodboards are established, I can typically figure out what I need as far as style and models. For this shoot, I didn’t specifically plan for hair or make up to be done, mainly because I wanted to keep the look somewhat natural. (However, my model ended up getting her make up done by Brianne Baxter, who did an amazing job at keeping Kailen’s look natural and glowy.)
As far as clothing, I admire Forever21 mainly because they’re always overstocked in onesies, crop tops, high waisted jeans, and graphic tees. Both Kailen and I pulled from our own personal clothing inventory to put together the look of this shoot.
And finally, I’m always scouting for locations. Literally, always. So I knew I wanted to shoot in this specific urban spot in downtown Salt Lake. (I’m a sucker for old, worn down buildings, so I had this location in my mind from the start.)
3 | Save Yourself from Stress
A huge stress reliever is double checking everyone at least 2-3 times prior to the shoot. Planning shoots so far in advance can also leave a lot of room for error. Suddenly your make up artist fell through, or you won’t receive your product in time, etc. So make sure you plan ahead. I always plan with vendors who are sending product to send it a week prior to our shoot. I also will text or email models, hair, and make up artists making sure that times and locations are still okay. Nothing is worse than having something fall through right before it’s supposed to happen. (However, it does happen, but this way you can be a little more confident.)
4 | Be On Top of it
Nothing looks more impressive than returning edited previews to all vendors the night of the shoot. Everyone is still pumped about shooting that day, and therefore seeing images the same day is always fun for everyone. It’s also a great way to get early promotion, since most of them will post it. When I return previews, I also like to send an email thanking them for the contribution, along with a deadline of when they should expect their photos to be ready by. (Note: Always exceed their expectations. Some ways to do this is by saying their images will take a week to edit, when really you know it might take 3 days to deliver it instead. It’s always a sweet surprise, and leaves your vendors impressed.)
Most photographers are worried about how many paid gigs they may get, which is true. We want to make money most of the time. However, the more shoots you do whether paid or not, still can contribute to portfolio work. I often like to pull stylized shoots together for no reason, just to get new shots that I will obsess over for the next upcoming months. It’s also a great way to explore and use YOUR ideas, versus working with companies and doing editorials for them. You can decide what models, clothing, hair and make up you want. Also, posting new shoots, contribute to more web traffic that will (wait for it….) get you new clients. It’s true.
Want to work on a styled shoot or collaborate with us?
We’re always looking to work with a creatives, photographers and bloggers for 2017. Whether you’d like to partner on a creative shoot, do a feature a tutorial or a guest blog post, we’re excited to hear from you! Email us HERE for more details or apply via this form HERE.