What to do for a Test Shoot

28 Feb

A test shoot is a photo shoot with a professional photographer which is only to be used for the purpose of everyone involved ( Model, Photographer, Hair-make up, Stylist) Portfolio. Before a test shoot I recommend having  all parties involved sign a waiver. 

Why have them sign a waiver? There are many cases where your test shoot photo may find its way in a magazine, sold as a poster, or put on a billboard. If you are new to modeling you may think this is a great thing! That’s what you dream of, to be in a magazine or put on a billboard! It can be great if you are being compensated for the use of that photo and the photo is being used in a positive image. You wouldn’t be so happy if your test shoot photo turned up on a billboard for a phone sex company without your consent.

The naive model trusts the photographer and everyone involved. It’s ok to trust but let’s be safe. I would have benefitted on many occasions to have them sign a waiver yet had never even thought of it. This has cost me around $100,000. So type up a waiver declaring the photos taken will only be used for their personal portfolio unless otherwise discussed with you beforehand and have everyone sign it for your records.

Make sure you have everything you might need for the test shoot the night before. Find out if there will be a stylist, hair and make up artist there. Usually the Photographer sets up the team. If everyone is already arranged and they don’t ask you to bring anything than all you need to do is show up. I like to get a pedicure and manicure before a test shoot with natural colors just because nails are a small detail test shoots usually overlook. Also, incase they do want to see your feet in sandals you wont feel embarrassed about your overgrown toe nails.  

However, there are some occasions when there is no stylist or hair-make up. If that’s the case for your test shoot, that you must do the styling and your own make up, ask the photographer where the photo’s will be taken and the idea he has. Then come up with the image you want for the pictures and collaborate with him. When its a photo shoot like this one, most likely a clean picture to show your natural beauty will come out nice.

Keeping hair and make up simple and natural is usually best. Barely there is key when doing it yourself. Trying too much with your own make up and hair usually never turns up good in photo’s since you are not a professional hair and make up artist. A little concealer around the eyes, to cover any blemish or discoloration, light mascara and some lip gloss should do the job.

If there is no stylist, wardrobe is yours and the photographers choice. An easy choice could be a pair of jeans and a tank top. The image there could be a simple jeans campaign, think Gap, Calvin Klien or American Eagle. Another choice if the photo is taken outside in day light could be an airy blouse with a feather weight skirt or trousers which move with the breeze. Think of ads for perfume or jewelry where the models seem to be in a tropical exotic place. The sky is blue and the wardrobe is lite.

1 Comment

Posted by on 02/23/2011 in Tools


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One response to “What to do for a Test Shoot

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