GENERAL Collaboration Tips:

  1. ‘Collaboration’ should mean that anyone donating their time, talent or product toward the shoot / event should get fair value out of their contribution. This means:

    • Give credit where credit is due

    • Respect their time and contribution as much as your own

    • Say what you will do, and then do what you say - meet the commitments you make

    • Be on time, be Professional

    • TFP (Trade/Time For Print) should never be used to take advantage of people (e.g. a free service to promote your business, clothing, or product - or the sale / licensing of images where one party will see monetary gain and others will not)

      In other words: Don’t be an ass - don’t use TFP to get something for free when you should damn well be paying for it!

 

Tips for MODELS:

‘Guys with Cameras’ - This is basically someone who is more interested in getting your clothes off than they are about the profession, art or craft of Photography.

I’d like to say that these guys are easy to spot - but it seems that some models set aside their common sense when making decisions on who to work with, and what to shoot.

Use. Your. Head.

  • Always check REFERENCES on Photographers. It doesn’t matter if they have been shooting for 6 months or 20 years - talk to other Models, Hairstylist or MUA’s who have worked with them

  • Look at their portfolio. Does their skill level or style of shooting match your goals as a Model? Is this the image or ‘brand’ that you want to portray to the world? (hobby or aspiring professional model - it doesn’t matter!)

  • Ideally, meet for a coffee before the shoot (ideally in a public place). Make sure you:

    • Discuss the goals of the shoot. What will the end result be?

    • ​Does the Photographer expect Lingerie, Implied Nudity, Nudity or anything you are not comfortable with?

    • WHAT you will be wearing / not wearing / doing MUST ALWAYS be discussed and agreed to before the shoot.


NEVER allow yourself to be pressured to do something you are not comfortable with on set - LEAVE IF YOU ARE PRESSURED

  • INSIST ON A CHAPERONE - If the photographer will not allow a chaperone - WALK AWAY FROM THE SHOOT.

  • Personal Note: I personally strongly discourage boyfriends or husbands as chaperones. They usually don’t want to be there, they’re bored, and they just want the whole thing over with. That means they’re a distraction to you and to me during the shoot.

    I always recommend Mom, a Sister or a friend - anyone who ENJOYS hair, makeup and fashion will be welcome.

  • Verify WHO WILL BE ON SET for the shoot - e.g. Photographer, Makeup Artist, etc. - If you show up to a shoot expecting one Photographer, and you’re suddenly faced with multiple, or an ‘assistant’ you did not expect: LEAVE THE SITUATION

  • If you are signed with an AGENCY you MUST disclose the shoot, and get their permission BEFORE it happens.

  • SHOW UP! BE ON TIME! BE PROFESSIONAL. Last minute cancellations / no shows are horrible, and trust me, Photographers also check up on Models before shoots - so it will get around!

  • DRUGS & ALCOHOL DO NOT MIX WITH PHOTOSHOOTS - just like drinking and driving. Don’t do it!

  • MODEL RELEASE: This is best practice for Models and Photographers and LEGALLY REQUIRED FOR MODELS UNDER 18! - The release is important because it is a binding contract between the Model and Photographer - it should describe:

  • WHAT is to be photographed

  • WHERE the images will be made (location)

  • PAYMENT (or TFP)

  • Allowed USE OF THE IMAGES by all parties involved

  • NUDITY - Models should NEVER be pressured to pose nude, or in any situation that makes them uncomfortable. Nudity / Lingerie / etc MUST be discussed before the shoot. NEVER allow yourself to be pressured on set - LEAVE IMMEDIATELY.

  • Things to consider before taking off your clothes:

  • It is ILLEGAL to photograph a MINOR without clothing or with any sexual content (implied or otherwise). Period. Consent of the Model, Parent or Guardian CANNOT BE GIVEN - Illegal is illegal. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.

  • WHY are you being asked to pose nude / partially nude? Why are you considering doing this? What is the REASON for the nudity in the shoot?

  • How will your friends, family or partner react? Will this negatively affect your relationships with people you care about?

  • Will this negatively affect your Education, Job or future Career? Will this be something you regret in a year, 3 years, or 10 years?

  • TRUST YOUR INSTINCTS - If it feels wrong, if you feel unsafe, if you are not happy. SAY SOMETHING.


IF YOU HAVE SERIOUS SAFETY CONCERNS, CALL SOMEONE / LEAVE IMMEDIATELY!

 

  • Have reasonable expectations. Not every shoot will turn out as a masterpiece. Every photographer will have a different skill level or style - just like every model will be different.

 

Tips for PHOTOGRAPHERS:

  • Use a Model / Property release. There are literally thousands of examples online - so there’s no excuse not to.

     

    It is LEGALLY REQUIRED FOR YOU TO HAVE A RELEASE SIGNED BY A PARENT / GUARDIAN when photographing ANYONE UNDER 18 years of age! A parent / Guardian / Agency Representative should ALWAYS be present.

  • Just as it’s important for Models to research photographers, I believe it is equally important to research Models and check references. I strongly encourage the pre-shoot coffee date - it helps set the models at ease before the shoot, and you generally get better results faster.

  • SAFETY, SAFETY, SAFETY - First Aid kits, Water, Food are all important. Beware of dangerous situations, heat stroke, frostbite, etc.

     

    YOU are in charge of the shoot and therefore the safety and well being of EVERYONE on set - that includes making sure you are not:

    • Breaking the law / trespassing

    • Putting people in unsafe situations (e.g. drowning hazard, chemicals, wildlife, falling hazard, flammables, etc.)

    • Making unreasonable / unsafe demands of people

    • Being an idiot
       

  • Discuss your expectations BEFORE the shoot. NEVER spring things on the Model on the day of the shoot (e.g. asking for clothing to come off when it was never discussed)

  • RESPECT THE MODEL. RESPECT THE MODEL. RESPECT THE MODEL. (and everyone else on set)


DO NOT:

  • Criticize

  • Pressure

  • TOUCH WITHOUT PERMISSION

  • Make sexual comments, jokes or innuendo

DO:

  • Encourage them to speak up if anything is wrong

  • Check on their comfort / well being

  • Be PROFESSIONAL & RESPECTFUL

  • ASK before touching (Hair, clothing, body - ANYTHING)

  • Give respectful, constructive & positive FEEDBACK

 

  • DRUGS & ALCOHOL DO NOT MIX WITH PHOTOSHOOTS - just like drinking and driving. Don’t do it!

  • AGENCIES - Swish and Panache (Winnipeg) absolutely require you to get their permission before working with their models! Contact the Agency and introduce yourself!

  • Panache in particular:

    • May require you to sign a Code of Conduct

    • WILL require a Criminal Record Check / Vulnerable persons assessment BEFORE WORKING WITH A MINOR

  • In general: TREAT THE MODEL THE WAY YOU WOULD TREAT YOUR OWN SON OR DAUGHTER

  • Have reasonable expectations. Not every shoot will turn out as a masterpiece.

My general pre-shoot ‘safety lecture’ to models:

  • If you are uncomfortable with anything that I SAY: TELL ME

  • If you are uncomfortable with anything I ask you TO DO: TELL ME

  • If you are uncomfortable with me (or anyone else) TOUCHING you: TELL ME

  • If ANYTHING is making you unhappy or uncomfortable: TELL ME

  • If anything you think SHOULD be happening IS NOT: TELL ME

  • I can’t solve problems I don’t know about - so please make sure you tell me about them!

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