Photo Essay

Please, not another sunset, sunrise, flower, puppy dog image.

Running Woman

Please NO not another sunset, flower or landscape image. Please!!!!!!!!!

What is a photographer to do when you just cannot bear to look at another sunset image, much less take one?

This is what I did.

Dream up a theme for a photo shoot. It's not that hard there are idea all around you. Just open you eyes and start seeing the world around you instead of just looking at the world around you.

Write the theme down on paper or with your word processor. Describe the theme for the photo shoot, give as much detail as possible.

Find a location for your shoot or shoots to take place. I prefer public locations like local, county, or national parks, trails, or any public area will work.

Write all this information down in the form of an advertisement.

Then place the advertisement on your local version of

Within a few days you should have at least one model who is willing to work for and with you on your photo shoot. When discussing the shoot with the model be open to new ideas and listen to his or her advice. You don't have to go with the suggestions they make but you should at least listen.

Once you come to an agreement set a date and time for the photo shoot and arrive early. You should always be early. How early? You should be at least fifteen minutes early, if not more. Typically, I arrive at the photo shoot location thirty minutes early. Why? Because I can.

When your model arrives (hopefully on time) be prepared with all the forms he or she will have to sign and have more than one ink pen incase one dies while filling in the model release form. Explain everything as it happens, be prepared to put the models anxiety, uncertainty, fear of the unknown to rest and answer every question he or she may have before the shoot begins.

Once the shoot begins follow the plan you and the model agreed on. Plan your shoot then shoot your plan. Following the plan reduces the number of surprises and increases the probability of successes by at least a factor of ten.

When the agreed upon amount of time is up end the shoot. Do not try to keep the model beyond the agreed upon amount of time. Trying to pull a fast one is the surest way to gain a bad reputation. Remember, it takes a lifetime to build a good reputation but only a moment to destroy your good reputation. Always be straight with the models you are working with.

Deliver the images as fast as you can. Models need the images probably even more than photographers do. Modeling is and can be a very cut throat business, just as photography is and can be.

Hopefully, the model will like or love at least one if not more of the pictures you took and delivered. These pictures will then be used on the models website and may result in free advertising for you and hopefully another photo shoot.

One good deed creates another. Please visit my website for more information about modeling for me and to see some of the images from photo shoots I have completed.

Thank you.

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3 responses

  • Martin E. Morris

    Martin E. Morris (Deleted) gave props (28 Dec 2008):

    Excellent informative and helpful story.Great images!!!

  • Laura Hartley

    Laura Hartley gave props (12 Apr 2009):

    No wonder these running shots look so up close and personal - they WERE!

  • Roxana Brivent-Barnes

    Roxana Brivent-Barnes said (6 Nov 2010):

    A big yes from me!

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