How to work with models? (Combine the Ideal & Reality)
As a microstocker when I think about models, before looking for a model I have to decide what I'm planning to shoot with my model. Fashion & glamour? Close-ups & body parts? Social concepts? Business concepts? If you plan your shooting that will make it easier to decide what model & from where!
If you have a long list of different planned shooting you can try to choose models that comply with these different ideas & concepts! It's an easy mission but possible!
Usually glamour & fashion shots requires well shaped models & beautiful faces, whether they have a nice smile or not, mostly serious faces are used in fashion with not much emotions shown on their faces.
On the contrary when you want models to shoot for social or business concepts, mostly models have to show nice face expressions like an attractive smile (I can repeat the smile 10 times here) & laugh, straight clean teeth as well. In addition I personally like to check the ability of these models to act and could ask them to make an expression or act during the first meeting.
For close up concepts I usually decide about the body parts that I want to shoot. Smooth hands, well shaped body in the clothes I ask the models to wear etc.
Obviously the first place where we try to find models are family & friends or neighbors. I can say my choice was made upon the concepts I wanted to shoot.
Some I just paid their expenses, for experienced I paid a little cash over the expenses & few with big cash all depends on the experience & how good they seem for what I want to shoot.
Many photographers choose time for CD! That is valid for models who want to make a portfolio & start a modeling career. That is very common in Europe but not in many parts of the world while it's still a business & a trade of interests.
Whoever you choose for modeling you have to spend some time explaining what do you want to shoot & asking what experience they have with the subject(s), also the model release that they should sign, what for & what does it mean, to make them sure that you don't do anything illegal or for any malicious purposes.
You have to notice the reaction of your models during the interview if they show any excitement about the concepts you want to shoot or not! Some they think shooting with a photographer means only glamour & fashion or to make them look nicer! Some they don't want to be shown in scenes with negative social issues. Some might not make any question which mostly means oh that is boring! haha
Model(s) should be relaxed about the shooting, that's why explaining the concepts & their outfit in addition if you have some previous work to show will be perfect.
You can always throw a question to your model if there is any trouble with the partner or the family about this shooting. Use your sense to decide whether you continue with this model or not, or to shoot some of the concepts only instead of all.
Some models bring a friend or a family member when they meet the photographer. I always tend to bring someone from my team so they can feel more confident. Personally I always warn that during the shooting I don't want anyone who is not involved in this shooting unless the models are underage, in this case I insist to have the presence of an adult in charge of the kid(s).
Give the model(s) your cell number to contact for any reason before the shooting to avoid any trouble.
Ask your models to sleep well before the shooting to be fresh & active.
Now it's time to shoot, make sure that you have what the model(s) might need. Water, a place to change clothes, some towels to dry liquids if needed. Check the preparation of your model(s) before you start.
During the shooting give models a break if you felt them tired. Try always to make it as much fun as you wanted it & to keep their smiles on. No trouble in skipping or postponing a scene that the model couldn't do well. At least they've tried.
Review some photos with the model(s) on site, it makes them happier about what they are doing. Encouraging & nice words in their ears is helpful also.
Try many angles with them, you never know when the shot can go better than you are even planning.
Happy shooting everyone!
Photo credits: Maen Zayyad.