Paid photoshoots, good learning tool?


Oct 3, 2012
10
0
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Singapore
#1
Hi all, Im fairly new to DSLR's, I shot film a long time ago but have been on a 25 year hiatus from photography. I was looking for a general consensus on the benefits of going to a paid photoshoot.

My model doesnt have to be beautiful as Im old enough to find beauty in everything. But the problem is, I'm extremely shy, I really have a hard time approaching a stranger and asking to take their photo.

Would a paid shoot be beneficial for me in regards to gaining knowledge and confidence?

I'm not really "building" a portfolio, yet photographing people is where my interests lie.

Also, are there certain promoters here that are better than others as far as accommodating amateurs?

Thanks in advance for advice
 

dennisc

Senior Member
Oct 24, 2002
2,026
2
38
Freezing Upp Thomson/Mandai!
#2
Why don't you shoot street instead? If you're into shooting portraits I'd suggest you get a tfcd or paid models, it will certainly gain your confidence, best to do it 1 to 1 rather than group as it's very chaotic. If you need models of all budgets you may contact me also, I've a huge list.
 

Shizuma

Senior Member
Mar 19, 2012
2,557
25
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#3
if you join a paid photo shoot , make sure you know what is going on , KPIs of good portraits .

if lighting provided , study it. if it is good , duplicate or improve . if its horrible , you could either voice out if you are the bold sort , or quietly note what to avoid in future lighting .

if you do put the image up for critique do be ready to listen with open mind and magnanimous heart , to constructive suggestions.

most importantly you should be on the initiative to learn . . .
 

Oct 3, 2012
10
0
0
Singapore
#4
@Shizuma, thanks for the advice, btw, whats KPIs?

@Dennisc, thanks as well. Ive tried a bit of street, but it feels as if i'm invading someones privacy to take their pic without permission. I come from a culture where you will probably get confronted for doing that (southeastern usa)
 

sjackal

Senior Member
Jul 9, 2008
4,490
10
38
#5
I am assuming you are thinking beyond the bare basics like composition and exposure and about posing and lighting; then the answer is, no, paid model shoots are not a good learning tool. It is one of the worst things one can do to fool oneself that one can shoot. One of the worst, repeated for effect.

Also street portraits are not also because most of the time the subjects are actually half willing and there's not much time to do things properly.

The best way to learn is to engage the help of a willing friend or family member; someone who knows nothing about posing, that you have to voice direct fully. Then you know where you really stand in terms of human portraiture. Is your mind blank after a few shots? Are you having different making the person do what you envision due to poor voice communication skill or shy personality; whether its you or your subject.

Next step will be a different profile of person, guy, girl, casual lifestyle, professional white collar, professional blue collar, fat person, thin person, young, elderly, then complicate it even more, groups, big groups, small groups, mixed aged groups, couple, double, mixed skin type, big height differences, big weight differences. Indoor condition, outdoor condition, studio condition. Available light style, full studio flash, mix flash with available light. Different style of flash and facial lighting. The list goes on and on.

The moment you join a paid model shoot, you paid money and lost learning.
 

Last edited:
Oct 3, 2012
10
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0
Singapore
#6
Thanks sjackal, point taken very well. Lighting is another adventure for later, natural light is what i do now because i dont have a studio or the money for a nice lighting set up. Your comment is greatly appreciated. I will try to meet someone here to work with, I have willing models at home (my wife and children are beautiful) but I'm here 28 days at a time and want to take photos.
I'm not a landscape or architecture kinda guy so i just need to get over my shyness and meet some people.
Thanks again
 

Last edited:

Shizuma

Senior Member
Mar 19, 2012
2,557
25
0
#8
you may wish to read on how to maximize subject isolation aka pop using natural lighting outdoors , in the Articles and Guides sub forum
 

catchlights

Moderator
Staff member
Sep 27, 2004
21,903
46
48
Punggol, Singapore
www.foto-u.com
#9
Hi all, Im fairly new to DSLR's, I shot film a long time ago but have been on a 25 year hiatus from photography. I was looking for a general consensus on the benefits of going to a paid photoshoot.

My model doesnt have to be beautiful as Im old enough to find beauty in everything. But the problem is, I'm extremely shy, I really have a hard time approaching a stranger and asking to take their photo.

Would a paid shoot be beneficial for me in regards to gaining knowledge and confidence?

I'm not really "building" a portfolio, yet photographing people is where my interests lie.

Also, are there certain promoters here that are better than others as far as accommodating amateurs?

Thanks in advance for advice
one good thing about joining paid photoshoot is, you don't have worry how the shots will turn out, if you don't like the outcome, can delete all and nobody will come after you. lol

I don't encourage offering TFCD to a stranger, or people you hardly know, cos under the term of TFCD, you are offering your skill plus photos as compensation for their time, unless you are competent photographer, else you will stress yourself too much, moreover, it is very common to encounter models last minute no show.

there are many things to learn about people photography, the hardest part is not about composition or lighting, is about interacting with your subjects.
so I suggest you ask your family members or people you know to help you, it is much easier at the beginning stage, when you build up your confidence and skills, you can start approach shooting other people or strangers.


hope this help.
 

sjackal

Senior Member
Jul 9, 2008
4,490
10
38
#11
quote "Are you having different making the person do what you envision"

Typo error, should be difficulty

What uncle catchlights said is very important, interaction with people. In people photography, people comes before photography. If you never ever have to take pics of strangers, but only family, friends and relatives, then the shyness part is not a big issue.
 

nedy77

New Member
Jun 21, 2005
999
0
0
#12
Start with friends, or friends of friends. With social networks(like Facebook), it's fairly easy. Just send them a private message to ask if they are willing to help you pose for a few photos.
 

Shizuma

Senior Member
Mar 19, 2012
2,557
25
0
#13
@Shizuma, thanks for the advice, btw, whats KPIs?
KPIs are Key Performance Indicators . almost like objectives to fulfill .

you may wish to Google for what are desirable attributes or traits in portrait photography .

also study how the subjects are posed in each lighting condition . you may similarly direct your models to pose in a similar way.

i had been in front of the lens once or twice and the professional shooter would establish rapport and also the method of communicating how we should pose via his hand gestures . very minority report style gesturing . you can work out your own set of signals .

good luck. have fun.
 

artemis79

New Member
Jan 2, 2009
123
0
0
#14
just to add,

i am also an learner in photographer, i start joining paid shoot as learn from others as they can direct the model and i can learn from the posing and framing but the reality is that most of the photographer are waiting for the model to pose and picture are just eye candy. The picture i shoot are repeating repeating with no real sense of story/mood/place. i start looking others picture and their picture show an relationship between the model and the surrounding and use the object around to create an mood/story. in paid shoot, everyone just shoot and shoot from different angle, far/near/30/90/120 degree angle. then its our fault for not getting the model to pose as our idea, i normally wait for all to finish before ask the model to pose for me.

nowaday i seldom go for the paid shoot unless there are an good theme or new model. ask friend to shoot also awkward because not nice , she will nag at me all day, co worker also not too nice, stress from them to get good"model" shoot.

an example

try have some relationship with surrounding

IMG_3711.jpg by artemis79ap, on Flickr

normal eye candy

IMG_3722.jpg by artemis79ap, on Flickr

pls excuse the poor frame of the picture.
 

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