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You’ve booked your model portfolio or actor head shot photo shoot (or you’ve been hired as a model), but you’ve not sure what to expect next. Don’t worry. If you’re well prepared, you’ll be able to handle any situation. Based on my experience, there are the essential things to bring with you regardless of the shoot. Depending on the purpose of the shoot (e.g. a client, your personal portfolio, etc) you can always add to the list. But, first and foremost, buy yourself an inexpensive airline carry-on size suitcase. Something with lots of pockets and internal storage areas is best. Ideally, consider one that has wheels and a telescoping handle. This will be your "model bag" that you will bring to every photo shoot. You won’t regret it! Now, on to the list …
Hair and Makeup:
The best advice is to pack as if you were going out of town for the weekend and you didn’t know where you were going or whom you were going to meet. The key is, BE PREPARED. Even if hair stylists and makeup artists will be on site as part of the shoot, you never know what you may run in to.
- Standard makeup kit including several shades of powders, eyeshadows, blushes and lipsticks.
- Nude or light pink nail polish, nail polish remover and cotton balls
- Mascara and lashes (depending on the look desired)
- Hair brushes, combs and picks
- Curling irons, flat irons or crimper
- Nail clippers, emery boards and tweezers
- Facial tissue and makeup removal wipes
- Hand and face moisturizer
- Hair clips and hair ties that match your hair color
- Bobby Pins
- Hair Spray
If you booked the photo shoot for your personal portfolio, you’ve hopefully already given a LOT of thought to the "looks" you want to capture. If not, browse through the latest copies of Elle, Vanity Fair or Glamour (or GQ for the guys) at the newstand to get the ideas flowing.
Solid colors are better than patterns. You want your face to be the focal point, not the distracting clothes. To make matters worse, I’ve even see the textures in some fabrics create a moire pattern when photographed.
Women should always bring nude and black heels to model photo shoots, preferably with 4" heels and no decorations nor straps (they can visually shorten your legs).
If you are doing an editorial photo shoot, accessories are a great touch. Create the drama with proper accessorization, not "loud" clothes. Go for the over-stated look since small and subdued will get lost in the photo and may end up being more of a distraction. Accessories should be kept to a minimum for a portfolio shoot.
Creature Comforts for Long Shoots:
- An iPod loaded with your favorite tunes
- Water and other beverages to help stay well hydrated
- Snacks, energy bars and other goodies to munch on throughout the shoot
There you have it! Without getting into the specific details around hair styles and wardrobe, these are the things you should bring with you at a minimum.
Did I forget anything? If so, leave a comment below and let me know! 🙂
If you are interested in booking a model or actor photo shoot, please contact me online or call 313-883-9500 for additional information. I’m looking forward to working with you!