Fashion photography: how to plan and carry out your own shoot

Fashion photography: how to plan and carry out your own shoot

In this tutorial we share our best fashion photography tips to help you plan and carry out your own shoot without any hassle.

Fashion photography: how to plan and carry out your own shoot

A fashion photography shoot is your chance to try out different techniques and get creative while working alongside models and stylists.

Fashion photography requires attention to detail, originality and technical expertise. From a creative point of view it’s fantastic because almost anything goes.

If you want to organise your own fashion shoot, one of the first things to do is find a model. You might know someone who is happy to model for you, but if you want to go one step further, consider booking a model.

You could go through model agencies or contact models and stylists direct through sites like Model Mayhem and PurplePort. Whichever option you go for, get them to sign a Model Release form. Search online for ‘model release form’ for downloadable examples.

Of course, with fashion photography it’s all about the clothes. We contacted the School of Art and Design at Bath Spa University, which teaches Fashion Design. They kindly let us borrow these wonderfully creative outfits by designer Rebecca Head.

How to set up your own fashion photography shoot: steps 1-3

How to set up your own fashion photography shoot: step 1

01 Prepare the scene
Good lighting is vital. A home studio flash kit is ideal. You’ll need a space large enough to set up lights, and a backdrop. (We used a roll of blue paper.) Plan the lighting setup using a stand-in before the model arrives.

 SEE MORE: Off-camera flash – how to stop fearing your flashgun and take control of lighting

How to set up your own fashion photography shoot: step 2

02 Mind the details
The clothes need to look perfect. Steam or iron them, and if they’re not a perfect fit, pin them into place. A stylist or any fashion-conscious friend with an eye for detail is invaluable. Robyn here was on hand during the shoot to adjust clothes and fix stray hairs and other details.

SEE MORE: Free portrait photography cropping guide

How to set up your own fashion photography shoot: step 3

03 Light it right
Behind the model we positioned two flash heads, angled back and fitted with softboxes. Another flash was placed in front, above and to the left, fitted with a circular reflector. The softboxes created edge lighting on the model. The frontal flash lit the face and outfit with hard-edged light.

SEE MORE: Free portrait lighting cheat sheet

Quick Tip
Set your flashes to the lowest power where you still get the illumination you need, as this will speed up the recycling time.

How to set up your own fashion photography shoot: 1-3
How to set up your own fashion photography shoot: 4-6

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