Shooting with a model is nothing short of amazing. Some of the advantages of working with a model are that they know how to work with your camera and how to set a mood. A good model will work with what you give them and will successfully translate the mood you are going for. Another great thing about models is that they know how to pose and you can learn from the poses the model does and later use them with your clients.
If you’re interested in learning how to work with a model, keep reading the blog post!
How should you approach an agency?
If you’ve never worked with models before, the first thing you will need to do is contact a modeling agency.
The fashion industry has its own set of rules. You need to approach a modeling agency the right way or they will turn you down.
Modeling agencies get calls and emails from lots of photographers, especially if they are a bigger agency. I recommend starting with the smaller mother agencies in your area and be selective. When you are in with the smaller agencies, it’ll be easier for the doors to open for bigger modeling agencies to say yes.
When you reach out to the modeling agencies, you could either cold call them, which I recommend, or you could email them.
When you do, make sure to introduce yourself and ask to test their “new faces”. This is important, it's like a secret code between you and the modeling agency!
If they say yes, they will offer you new faces to shoot or you could ask to see them beforehand.
New faces are models that are new to the agency and need portfolio work. It's like a trade between you and the agency. You get to photograph the models, the models get free training and exposure, and the agency gets the images for the model's portfolio. Every once in awhile, you get to shoot a model that's been with the agency for a while and is already a pro at modeling.
One thing is certain when you work with agency models: reliability. They will show up so you don’t need to worry if they do or not. Once everything is set up with the modeling agency, you will provide the mother agent with the call sheet. In the call sheet, the model has all the information like where to go and how to get there.
You will also need to provide them the address, the style of the shoot, and any information pertaining to hair and makeup. They will need to know whether you want the makeup all done or natural, or if you already have hair and makeup on set.
What should a model bring to a shoot?
It all depends. You can choose to provide the outfit for them or let them know to bring their own wardrobe. If you’re doing a boudoir session, you can let them know to bring a nude bra and undies to make it simple. If you’re concerned they might bring the wrong outfit, you shouldn’t worry too much because every good model knows to bring basic essentials to a shoot.
Before you finalize who the model you will be shooting is, make sure to get the age of the model. This is important if you plan on shooting boudoir or more revealing poses and photos. Most models are very young and under 18, even though they certainly do not look like it on pictures.
From my experience, I recommend getting your feet wet with working models. It's definitely a hassle-free learning experience and you can be sure your work will definitely improve.