CHOOSING THE PERFECT PHOTOGRAPHER
BY TAWNYA CLINE // MICHAEL BROOKS PHOTOGRAPHY // MODEL: IPL PRO AURORE COTETT
Professional photo shoots can be super exciting, but trusting your instincts can go a long way.
Professional photographs are a necessity for aspiring fitness and bikini models. Models submitting photos for magazine exposure will almost always require a professional photo. It is better to be prepared and to have a myriad of photos for your editor to choose from, preferably fresh prints that have not been previously published or released.
A great time to schedule a shoot is in the week leading up to or immediately after a competition. Your body is at its peak and this is the best time to show off the look for which you have worked extra hard. When choosing your photographer, go with your overall feeling you have with that person. You want someone that makes you feel special and works with you to capture just the right look. You want to share the same vision. However, keep in mind that they are the professionals, and your idea of a great shot may not be so great behind the lens. Trust in your photographer.
“A photo shoot is not only a rewarding experience, but it can help with awkwardness, facial expressions and an overall better presence when on stage.”
A photo shoot is not only a rewarding experience, but it can help with awkwardness, facial expressions and an overall better presence when on stage. I like to take any opportunity to shoot, so I can improve my overall look. While taking advantage of professional photo opportunities, be certain to check out the photographer’s work. Do not be afraid to ask for referrals, whether you are paying or getting a free shoot. A word to the wise…often times it is the FREE shoots that should be taken with caution. Some photographers need the practice, some may love your look, and others may push you into compromising positions or wardrobes.
“I have learned to have different looks and become open to poses that are more than just a smile. I have also canceled shoots…”
I can not stress enough for you ladies to trust your instincts. Pushing you to stretch and be a better, bigger version of yourself is one thing. Making you feel uncomfortable or as though you might disappoint someone or let them down, even if it doesn’t feel right, is another. This is your photo shoot—your time to shine. You do not owe anyone anything.
I myself have had numerous photo shoots and really stretched out of my comfort zone in a good way. Becoming more comfortable with who I am as a whole. I have learned to have different looks and become open to poses that are more than just a smile. I have also canceled shoots, because I didn’t have a good feeling from the beginning or was not feeling empowered in anyway. Do not doubt your intuition.
It’s an incredible trait we have as women. Please check the contract out thoroughly before shooting with a photographer. Will you be able to use the photos for what you wanted, and what rights are you allowing the photographer to your photos. Signing a contract is normal, just make sure it benefits you as well. Keep in mind, once you have signed a contract and modeled for a photographer, you often cannot take those images back.
We are blessed in the IPL by having a photographer (michaelbrooksphotography.com) that they trust entirely, the athletes love, and he is available to book at every IPL competition. Not to mention, he knows exactly what looks the IPL is going for when publishing the magazines.
“Find the right fit. Do your research. Modeling is hard work and is meant to be rewarding.”
Find a photographer, review his/her work, style and editing. Ask for referrals and make sure it is a good fit. Just because you and the photographer have a mutual friend on Facebook does not mean they are the one for you. There are thousands of amazing fitness, bikini, and fashion photographers available. Find the right fit. Do your research. Modeling is hard work and is meant to be rewarding. NATURAL BIKINI