Preparing For Your Brand Photography Session
If you are an entrepreneur you might already know that a strong online presence, brand awareness, and creative content is essential to your marketing and growth strategy. Beautiful quality photography, branding workshops, good design, and business education can help you grow exponentially.
I am so excited about your upcoming creative content branding session. I know we are going to have so much fun together. Before your session though, here are some ideas and tips to make everything just perfect from clothing to what to bring.
1. Create & Dream
The first process to creative content is CREATIVE!
A. INSPIRATION BOARD
You will want to start creating an inspiration board either on paper or on pinterest. Start figuring out what you want and dream of for our sessions. Starting thinking about WHERE you will be using the images so you can know what content you need.
B. SHOT LIST
Coming up with a shot list is SUPER helpful if you have a specific vision. Some clients really just need lifestyle journalism so showing up with a few props and cute clothes is enough because I will DO my thing! I will be moving around like the flash and snagging close up and far away shots.
2. Plan Ahead
A WHAT DO YOU NEED & WHEN?
Consider what you need from each session. If it’s a stand alone creative session you will need a specific list of things you need and can reasonably be captured during the session time.
If you have an ongoing membership then you want to spend some time organizing each session and the goals/launch times you need the images for.
Example: You want to make sure you are capturing holiday images a month before you need them MINIMUM. If you have a Christmas special then you want to start using those images just like Target stores and launch them right after thanksgiving day at the latest. So you need to schedule and shoot those images in October. The turn over for editing and delivery can take anywhere from 2-6 weeks depending on the season and my workflow at any given time. My schedule fills up pretty fast for morning and afternoons and weekends are usually gone months in advance, so be sure to get on the schedule with plenty of time to spare.
3. Set The Vibe | Location, Props, Wardrobe, ETC
What sort of vibe do you want from your session? Your location will set the tone for your images, as well as your props and wardrobe. My speciality is really outdoor and naturally lit shots but I am capable of capturing indoor and office or product shots too. I have a LOT of outdoor nature places that are free for us to use and a few local shops as well.
If you have a specific vision that in order for me to capture that I need to know it. So do you want a location that is “officy” but your office is tiny and dark but you want floaty soft airy images? Then consider renting an Airbnb, or renting out a local co-working space. Or even consider a public coffee or tea house.
Props are super important for branding photography. So be sure to have a list of things that represent you. So that could be your product, or something associated with your services you offer.
Start a list: coffee mug, oils, that special scarf, pens, laptop, books, trendy glasses, flat lay items (camera, notebooks, planner) your phone etc.
Don’t be afraid to wear what you love and showcases who you are! If you feel good when you put on your outfits and look in the mirror, it will definitely show in your photographs. The vibe of your shoot will be reflected in your outfits 100%
- If you want light and bright wear soft and neutrals
- Bright and fun wear bright and fun!
- Green and earthy… you get it right?
- If you enjoy a fancy shoot in the middle of the desert, wear that favorite bow tie or ballgown! (FYI I LOVE A FANCY DESERT SHOOT!)
- Casual look? Then coordinate with a color theme for the shoot.
A few more tips:
- Black/Navy/dark colors tend to be slimming and classic.
- White is brightening and flattening to almost all skin tones.
- Soft Neutrals (such as creams, tans, pinks,) are really popular and give your shoot a really light and airy feeling.
- Colors are fun but be cautious with hyper saturated or odd fabrics that seem dense and too primary.
If you are totally LOST hire a stylist!
I have a great team with Ristyle Consulting on my must have list! Also Risa the founder and owner has a few great tips to share today! FOR FREE! Free tips from the best in the business??? It’s your lucky day!
Hey there! Risa from RISTYLE Consulting here!
When I first founded RISTYLE, I got my start working with photographers and families for their holiday mini sessions, so my team and I understand navigating a fast-paced shoot really well. After having been on hundreds of shoot sets, I’ve compiled a few tips to ensure a successful shoot with the incredible Tracy at the helm!
– Always consider the color palette of your feed and what pop colors make sense with your already existing content. Try to work them into the outfit in a subtle way so you keep the flow of your imagery consistent.
– Consider cuts. Accentuate your most flattering areas and remember that not everything photographs exactly how it looks on the hanger. Highlight the areas you love!
– Head-to-toe matters. Finish your looks with the proper hair, makeup, accessories and footwear. It all matters! A great dress won’t make the same impact if you don’t style the entire look!
Here are a few of my secret tips…
– Heels help with posture! Even if the shoes won’t show in your shot, it helps give you extra balance and allows you to stand up straight
– Clip! if you can clip some of the fabric back on clothing that is too blousy, it helps give you shape and allows YOU to wear the clothes, not the other way around.
– Any hair or bold lip changes should be done LAST! If you’re doing a darker lip or tossing your hair up, save these looks and changes for the last shots of your session. It’s easier to make the changes in this order as opposed to the other way around.
– Play around with layers! If you have layers in your shoot such as a blazer or denim jacket, try rolling the sleeves and using the piece as a prop (off the shoulders, over a chair, etc.). It’ll give you a quick variation with that piece allowing for more content without having to do a full outfit change.
– If you don’t have a stylist there, keep a hand mirror or compact close by! It’ll allow the photographer to stay put and you to have a final look at your appearance between shots.
Check out Risa and her team today- Be sure to tell her you are my client and she will assign you an amazing stylist to help your creative content come alive!
Risa Kostis- Owner/Founder
CHECK OUT MY PINTEREST BOARD WITH OTHER CREATIVES FOR INSPO
Even better… head to my Instagram account and follow #fullyalivecreativecontent for LOTS of examples.
Feet Need Love
Sometimes people overlook the shoe choice. I LOVE shoes and I love to photograph them. (Yes, this means you get to go shoe shopping!) Bright colored flats, leather and bright colored flips flop, and some awesome converse are great! But bring a pair of flats to walk around if you plan to wear uncomfortable heels for the actual shoot.
Hats, jackets, jewelry etc it all plays a part!
Makeup, Chapstick, and Glasses OH MY
LADIES (and gentlemen if you wish) Hire The Professionals!
I HIGHLY recommend getting your makeup done for your shoot. The camera tends to flatten and making your features stand out (especially your eyes- WEAR FALSE LASHES! You will be SOOOO glad you did!) is super important. Makeup artists know exactly what photography does and they can help you create a look that keeps you- you while flattering you!
Moisturize those lips
Be sure to moisturize your lips well before your photo shoot. Dry, cracked lips are really hard to touch up later in the pictures.
If you wear glasses, they could reflect light and cause glare and shadows across your eyes. Editing out glare and shadows takes an enormous amount of time and is very expensive. We don’t want you to have to change the way you look so you might consider talking to your optometrist. Most eye doctors have a spare pair of frames without glass you can borrow for your session. You will probably need to go in and see your eye doctor at least a week or two before your session to make sure they can help you and that they have a similar pair of frames in stock.
If you need color touch ups or cuts do that at least a week before your shoot so it has time to grow to a softer look.
Lots of clients also like to get their hair styled for their shoot, but I hear a lot of complaints of not being happy with hair on shoots. Mostly I think this is because most of us know our hair and how it looks best, so if you don’t have a regular stylist that does your hair I would either get a trial or skip it. But be sure to give yourself plenty of volume~ Be sure to bring some things to do quick fixes to your hair between locations (hair spray, brush, comb, etc) If your hair is very long, you might want to bring some clips, bobby pins, hair bands, or cute headbands to pull your hair back if it starts bugging you or if you just want to change up your look.
A. I HAVE YOUR BACK
Okay, so it’s totally terrifying to be in front of the camera for most people. So one of the best things to remember is that I do this for a LIVING.
I LOVE doing this. I love it so much that you will love it! I’ll take care of making you look fantastic and capturing your life and relationships as they really are so don’t worry about a thing. I realize most people are not used to being in front of a camera so I will be there giving you plenty of direction and lighten the mood with my own awkwardness.
Sometimes I might actually have you pose a certain way. Other times I might as you to do something. Remember that you don’t always have to sit like a stone statue or cheesy grin into the camera lens all the time. Do whatever feels most natural to you, I want you to remember your loved ones at this stage in your life. I am a lifestyle journalist and I am there to capture your essence and life!
Be super honest about your insecurities and strengths! If there are things about yourself or angles you do not like please let me know. We all have them so it’s better for me to know those if you are very particular about them. Please tell me if you have a preferred angle or side. Otherwise don’t worry because I will spend some time seeking that out for you!
B. REMEMBER WHY & TRUST THE PROCESS
Reminder yourself why you are here! You most likely booked my services because you want to show up for your audience. Either your website, social media, or something more. But if you remind yourself of the goal then the process will become more relaxing and worth the effort.
Day Of Tips For Off Site Locations
BRING A ROLLING SOMETHING.
A cart, rolling tote, small suitcase, or if we are hiking bring a backpack. We really don’t want to get tired from toting things around and we also want to be able to take journalistic photos without a ton of bags in each shot (unless the bag is the prop!)
Let me know if you have any questions and I’ll see you soon!
Preparing For Your Creative Content Photography Session
Want to see what happens AFTER your session?