Concepts for Stylized Shooting
Why shoot for yourself? So for a long time, I didn't shoot for myself because I was so busy shooting all those three hundred clients a year, I didn't shoot for myself, and when I found is you really get in such a rush when you're shooting over and over again. I know yesterday somebody asked you ever run out of poses? You ever run out of ideas? Yeah, totally. I mean, I'm a creative person, and I think that creative people can't just do the same thing over and over that gets, like, really hair pulling boring for us. We want to always step it up a notch or do the same idea, but do it better next time, so I really made sure to carve out some time to shoot for myself and all of the photos that I'm showing in this presentation are all things that I've done for myself using a model. Um, when you shoot for yourself first is shooting for clients I find in my experience it looks totally different. I just don't I just I don't know, it just is my vision it's like, you know, when you lay in bed at ...
night and you picture like that amazing shoot or that end result that you want to get on it's, just hard to get that with client because with clients it's a collaboration you're trying to give them what they want also with a style I shoot I could do whatever I want to dio and that's really great it really flexes your muscles and it gets you thinking so that's why I really recommend it and also you know I used to say this all the time my clients as for the same thing over and over and over because it's what they see this gives you an opportunity to me you want to do and show them something different so maybe they'll start asking for things like that so one of the chutes that I posted recently shot with a lens baby the edge eighty optic I think it's called the optic edgy idiot or something like that but it was we might even use it today it was a really, really fun shoot I I had the best time and about three days after I posted it on my blog's somebody called me and requested a shoot just to use that one so I don't know if you've ever done it with clients but I love the look when we do a whole shoot with the lens so she never would have known that had I not done that shoot and put it out there and tried it for myself shooting for yourself pushes you creatively and shows your clients what you're capable of but it also shows you what you're capable of so there's all this self doubt right? We all say, well, I don't know if I can do it or I look at other people's images and I think I could never create something like that can you? How do you know have you ever tried? So sometimes I'll do issue and I'll be really bad it'll be bad I won't even maybe get one or two usable pictures and I'll be like this is terrible but I'm so glad I tried it because now I know am I capable of that? Not really not yet maybe I need to still work on that, but then I'll do a shoot and it comes out I'm like, oh my god, this is good you know? How often do you say wow, this is amazing stuff that I did doesn't for me it doesn't happen necessary with my clients because it's very standard what I'm doing with my clients when I shoot for myself there are moments where I go well, I might get this thing down pat after all, you know, I might know what I'm doing, so I think it's good to show yourself what you're capable of and just let go and allow yourself to succeed without limits we all get stuck and creative rights don't think you're alone when that happens boredom sets in the excitement we want for our clients dissipates when that happens so we want to keep our energy up for our clients we want to make the excitement happen every single time they come in. We want to be excited in my experience that just doesn't happen when you're shooting three hundred women a year and you're doing the same thing over and over again and you're hurting them like cattle, you just can't keep that excitement up, so shooting for yourself allows that because then you could discover something new. I found a new pose, right? I found a new lens or I have this new technique that I tried that I really worked, you know, that worked for me, and I want to try that with you today, I know we discussed doing x y z, and we'll do all of that lets try a b and c two then because they're trying on your clients and having a really good time with them and that's how you get out of your afraid of ruts created butts, by the way are not such a bad thing. You know, the frustration that we feel as artists, um is frustrating, and I think it's probably even more frustrating for my husband cause I'm always complaining that like, oh, I'm so bored and I need to do something new and he's like, oh my god, here we go again, you know, but um, it's important to have those ruts and that feeling like you're stuck because that's I always know when I feel that aggravating feeling that I'm on the verge of something really amazing, right? Because it's like, you know who just want to do the same thing over and over and over again. That's not that's, not you're not emotionally connected to your photography that way you're not emotionally invested to your photography that way. So, um, shooting for yourself, I think comebacks all those feelings, you know, it's also great to build your portfolio. So, like I said, most of my clients don't sign amada released maybe like five percent of my clients and amal released maybe if that at this point, most of my clients sometimes I don't even bother sent giving it to them anymore because I already know they're not going to do it, you know, I'm a teacher, I'm a lawyer, I'm a cop, whatever, it might be a I don't even bother. So what you gonna put on your website? What do you put on your facebook in your bog? This allows you to have material to put up there now. Like I said yesterday, I am careful about letting people know this was not a client, this was a concept shoot that I did you know, this is a model or this is you know, I do what I think is gonna make my client's comfortable so you have to feel that your client some people don't want people to know it's a model or it's a concept shoot this is just me shooting in my studio and I'm building my portfolio and that's okay too, but this will allow you to give your pictures to do that you can also learn great posing tricks for models and I know we have discussed that, but I want to say it again because I have learned amazing tricks for models because they know as much as I know about posing and how the body works they know even more than I do so they'll show me things and sometimes I'll say wow, what it would do it again how do you do that? What are you doing there? What do you thinking when you do that pose? What do you what had you learned that you know who taught you that? Why are you doing that? Why your hands like this just serve a purpose you know why which I pose? I put my hand like this, but when you pose you put your arm like this what's the difference ask questions of your models, learn from them they have a wealth of knowledge about a lot of things they've worked with other photographer they've worked with people in other industries fashion you know, commercial they know a lot more than we do in our own little worlds they get out more than we do so ask him questions you know they know a lot of things we don't know what kind of makeup looks good on you or you know, someone tie my makeup artists use uh you know, such and such a brand that I broke out in a rash so make sure you know we don't use that anymore you know, just anything ask them questions about things they know a lot a lot a lot more than they're given credit for when you start I shoot you need inspiration so where do you get the inspiration from it's hard to come up with ideas over and over and to top yourself and to be true to yourself with your ideas and not do things that other people have done or do things differently than other people have done on the same topic? I mean, you know we're not going to reinvent the wheel pretty much everything's been done so how do you do it differently? How'd you do it better? How do you do better than yourself on how you did it last time? How do you do it so it's different enough that somebody doesn't look at your work and say wow, daphne that looks just like a concept shoot the tracy did you know how did you guys we'll take the same concept to make it look completely different so where'd you get the inspiration we have a question the ideas for this do you collaborate with you know like a friend or somebody else and then like I mean the set for the stylish sheeted his pretty neat so do you go around and collect all those bits and pieces to put it all together and then rent some gonna room or we're going to talk about all that stuff no you don't mind okay, yeah I will get to know it's a great question because there it's not a simple is just grab me a girl I'm going to shoot there's a million little details that you have to do and the thing is it's hard to carve the time to do this because you're busy working your business you're busy dealing with your client and preparing for creative life and, you know, writing for shutter magazine and doing all the taking care of two children and oh yeah, I have a husband too and all those things and now I have to take out time to shoot for me you're kidding? Who has time for that? And I had to find a location and a makeup artist and a wardrobe and a model and what if the model bales and wait there? Yeah it's not an easy thing to dio but I have to do it to get myself out of my creative rut so yeah there's a lot of details we're gonna talk about all of us so where do I get inspiration? Uh movies tv books pop culture old photos and love looking old photos on pinterest um books get him for my clients a client might have an idea that she wants to do and I want to take it a step further you know like maybe the girl with boxing stuff on you know she just wanted some nice cute pictures gives her husband but maybe I want to take it up not do something crazy with it rocky themed or something I get ideas from my hair and makeup team I get ideas from models that have ideas that you know I did this crazy shoot but it would be great if we did it this way friends and yes, even other photographers does that scare you and I say that yes so I get ideas from other photographers and yes I try not to look at too many other photographers work but there was always always in your face like do you ever go to the mall? I mean there's pictures everywhere this picture's on tv there's pictures you know magazines so yeah I'll take a concept maybe that I've seen another photographer dio but I'm certainly not gonna coffee the other photographer I'm going to use it for inspiration I'm gonna make sure it looks totally different. Yeah, here I go again with the mood boards, but this is a great place to get your inspiration and your ideas together to see what it looks like because you can sometimes have an idea and get it together in a movie where to go? It doesn't look right something's not right there, right? So it's important to also use them to show the other people that you're working with what your ideas are. So a couple of examples of that when we decided we were going to a style I shoot, I contacted these six beautiful women, and I said, listen, we're gonna do a style I shoot, and I want you guys to come up with the idea, so I want everybody to make a mood board for their idea or two mood boards or what not, and they did, and they came up some great ideas we're going to talk about, and what I did was once I chose the idea we wanted to do, I share the mood board with the makeup artist in the hairdresser well, same girl make about his hairdresser, and I said, listen, this is the mood board, do me a favor, you make a mood board now for ideas for hair and makeup looks that we can choose from to match this idea and so she did that and what I did was I took the mood board that we're going to do and I took her mood board and I combined them into one mood board and said okay, this is what we're going with and now I can show to the model I could show it to you guys I control to the make up artist hairdresser I could show it to the stylist if I have a stylist and we're all on the same page for the feel and the look of the shoot I love singers can you guys tell me uh is this okay if we just like I want to know I want to talk about the ideas that they came up with the boards that they made and like what influence them to come up with that board and then I'll tell you which board I chose to shoot okay? My board I guess I was inspired by like the darker side and I had like darker eyes and like lots of shadows and I just for some reason I'm drawn to it I don't know how to explain why I picked the stuff that I did but that's just kind of where I went with it well it's funny that you say that because um there is a reason why you chose those and it's good thing to look into so often times when I pick topics or I developed the topics that I want to shoot I keep my pillar words in mind so I'll make sure that it's you know, feminine incident and fearless in some honor dark and dreary no, no, because the thing is I love dark too because dark is super fearless, right darken totally be intimate and totally feminine I love dark also um so no don't look at it that way, but what I'm saying is that everything ties in together it all ties in together and you don't want to make sure it's clear with your message of who you are, so if you're not like, for example, a pinup photographer and you do a whole pinup shoot, why would you do that? Because now you're giving your customers mixed messages, so you do want to make sure when you do it that it's clear with your vision of what you want your business to be and what you want your art to be it's not just like randomly picking an idea and shooting it. So you're going the other way maybe and looking at what they're thinking about it but just I want I want to just plant that seed for you like maybe this is a good way to figure out what my words are I just go on pick what I like, what I'm drawn to and then I look at them as a collective point is america wins it's not a coincidence what you're drawn tio you just don't know why your drawings but yet and you have to figure that out, but there is a reason we just don't know what it is yet I picked old hollywood glamour I guess I loved that luxurious thing I would like my brand to be that I don't know if that's where I'm at right now, but that's where I would like to head the direction and so that's kind of where I went luxurious glamour and, um I like the old kind of a vintage maybe hollywood stuff so that's my bit um I went with a great gatsby board mostly because I love hair fascinators I could never put one in my own hair because I feel really silly, but I just love hairpieces and I love luxuries, jewels and gold and silver and I actually really you know, I love like the idea of a speakeasy and prohibition and all that kind of stuff that you're not supposed to be doing, but you know, they they did it because they weren't allowed teo and you know, I guess for me I don't like being told what I can't do it on def, I am told what I can't do, I usually end up doing it, so I think I think that's probably why I went with the gatsby stuff you know because it has that kind of air of danger and you're not allowed to do you know and it was naughty for the twenties but what makes you think you can't wear a fascinator I I don't I just feel stupid with it on my head you know but I see so many other women I'm like damn that look so awesome you could wear one I think you should try I think you should fascinate one to my head I think you should do it e know what this is this is exactly what I do in my business people say well I can't wear a fascinator why not why did you convince yourself of that I don't know truth or is it a lie you've been telling yourself it's probably alive and telling myself because I saw a lovely young lady in the cafeteria this morning I was like wow she is a pretty cool hair piece and you know unlike my sister trevor she wears these amazing like feathery things and I'm like wow that's so awesome well maybe you just haven't found the right yes maybe you're right so we should go to nordstrom there you go with my mood board I went with something really well it was smoke themed um I'm a biker chick at heart I spent a lot of time on two wheels and I'm really drawn to images of women that just looked like a total bad ass is like I really like that sort of dark um greasy sort of smoky smoky look so that's what I did I put together most of them were smoking cigarettes and you know just like dark colors shadow is most of them are black and white and um I've always wanted to do a shoot like that but I haven't had the tools I don't know how do you set up the lighting to do that how could you get the smoked toe look beautiful and elegant and not just like you know stinky so can you tell us about the other board you're also deposited to board? I did two boards because after I submitted the smoke one I thought what are the chances that creative live is goingto let us use cigarettes and you know, having a smoke and stuff so I went and did a candy board and I got a little bit of inspiration from something that my husband said to me once and when I did them when I thought of the mood boards I tend to think of what would a man find attractive and I just went with like a lot of candy bright colors literally like sprinkles stuck toe lips and colorful so it was sort of my backup but the smoke one was the one that I really put my heart into so jenna I did two boards and the first one, I think, was vintage inspired and you said, no, push yourself, so I thought, okay, so my fantasy shoot, what if budget wasn't an issue and geography wasn't an issue, so I put together a board that was influenced, I think, sort of reinterpret modern reinterpretations of sort of cinematic themes, so I went with something that was quite artistic and edgy, and I think because it was chinese new year that was coming up, so oh, it's, the year of the snake it's, a year renewal, so I went with lots of golds and breads, and I'm very much influenced by very obscure foreign films with bad subtitles, so I went with something that was quite dramatic, thanks. S o I just had an ah ha moment when you were talking to tracy about how we didn't accidentally become attracted to these things. So I made a mood board based on marie antoinette. I originally thought that I had picked the things that I included in the mood board because I'm laminating that I wasn't a photographer when I studied in france, and I would really like to go back someday and shoot on the streets of paris, but I realized that the things that I chose are very they're very neutral and color, and I like pretty things I am not a brightly colored person I don't like hot colors I don't like dark things I realized that my style is very much what my board is that that is right on the nail of of where I want to be I really love those lacey intricate high end looking things um like I said I just had a total ah ha moment I I know who I am all decided so I'm going to cry also uh well I'm really happy that you have that moment and you said some words in there that can and start sounding a little bit like filler words also that we can talk about later if you'd like tio um you know there's a decadence there there is um I think he said expensive looking things well what would what do you call that how do you put that out to a woman who's maybe it's not even expensive but it just looks expensive right um and daphne when I asked you to push yourself the reason why I did that is because the first word that you did was beautiful and I hope I don't offend when I say that it was very cliche is very much what we expect from the war and this is a style I shoot we wanna push ourselves right? We want to get out of that comfort zone and that's why I said push it a little bit now lauren going back to your boards candy is a very funny one because I love candy by the way not just talked with but I love candy I think sugar is a food group and I make sure I have it every day, so I don't drink caffeine, but sugar and I were friends and yeah, so you know immediately I go allow bright colors and candy and love can be kidding me goes I love candy with photographer in me says that does not match my brand whatsoever it's valentine's day candy so obvious, right? And I'm not trying to insult you at all what I'm trying to get you to see how to think outside the obvious outside what somebody would do naturally that's how you set yourself apart and the board was super fun and matter of fact, my daughter was like, oh my god, what is that that's also, but I didn't want to do it because I felt that it was so bright and colorful I'm not bright and colorful that's not my you know, I'm I'm urban glamour dark, sexy, pretty there's definitely pretty in there, but like yesterday when I said okay, I want to shoot with that stool in your like that stool is ugly and I'm like, I live for that ugliness because for me, putting a beautiful woman and an ugly setting makes her even more beautiful so that's how I look at it so it's a little bit different and I agree but I guess it was a little bit of doubting myself after I submitted the first board I thought it's so different from everybody else's is it going to be possible so that would that's why I said it was my my backup you know it my throat does exactly what you said it's not I don't think it will be my style either but well and it was a different and that's why I chose it to shoot today because I looked at the board and I don't whoa smoke that's freaking awesome first of all, the most awesome thing about it is we can't smoke in here so how we gonna make it be like smoke if we can't even smoke in here? What if the model doesn't even smoke? What are we going to dio and it was a challenge and because I'm crazy I decided to take on this challenge live but this is the point this is really so like my husband asked me so what you gonna do for smoke? And I'm like I really don't know he's like leaving for creative live tomorrow what do you mean you don't know? I just I just don't know what this is really this is how it works you show up at a location and it's not what you pictured or you have an idea and you don't know if it's gonna work so we're gonna try it today is it gonna work? I have absolutely no idea I might totally bomb and everyone's gonna hate me but I might create something amazing on all I need to do is maybe have one to five amazing pictures that I could say look up my concept and I did it and I just need to show one, two five photos even if it's one even if you get one photo, one image where you like, look at this concept and it's a stunning image nobody's gonna go saying why I need more they're gonna be like whoa that's an awesome concept so it takes take the pressure off of yourself when you're shooting this stuff and any time you feel that feeling like I don't know if it's it's not like everybody else that means you're on the right track follow that, by the way, I'm gonna show you a couple of fast things that I got today that I'm hoping will work smoke this is some fabric I picked up from a store that I just thought you so lightweight and I kind of thought maybe it just kind of looks like smoke, so we're gonna play with this a little bit today and I also went on etc and I found, um he's super cool I think they're super cool we'll see in a few minutes but he's sort of their belly dancing scarves and every avenue such a thing existed and seriously the day before I left for seattle a girlfriend of mine uh jen sent me a link to an etsy scarf that was really amazing and I was like, oh well I guess it was the day after the blizzard or is two days before I came here so I said, well I guess I'll look on etc and I randomly came across this and I was like smoke so I emailed her I'm like you need to get these two mean seattle in two days okay so she did and they're sort of like these belly dancing scarves that I guess like they just kind of dance with I'm not sure because I'm not super familiar belly dancing but I just thought man this own break kind of effect can be like smoke but it's not smoke so it's like kind of a concept right? He also had to have a smoke machine which we played with the other day which was kind of fun and as far as lighting I'm not really sure what I'm gonna dio yet but I have my ice light on what's so nice about the isolators you could get some pretty dramatic lighting with this and I thought maybe it would be great for those shadows and bright and so we'll play with this if it if it works out but this is a great light tohave it just kind of stick, you know, in your camera bag it's small then at any given moment you could be like let's play with it. So as far as the lighting is concerned, well, I did was bring this really you so we're gonna try to do that today, okay? So mood board so thank you for making those mood boards and anybody that wants to check out my interests. I have a smoke inspired woodward again that I've sort of collaborated taken some of lauren's pin some of my own ideas and some of my comas ideas that make up artist hairdresser so that this way we can all be on the same page. Yes, so can we ask some questions about mood board? Yes, great, we have one from t k event productions who says so again just how do you start a mood board? Do you just add whatever comes to mind? Yeah, the great thing about pin traces that is not permanent, so if you click on something and afterwards you look at the mood board and you say you know what it doesn't it doesn't fit with, you know what? I'm pinning this picture, but it doesn't fit with the rest of the mood take it off you know is for me I owe I pin pin more than I need and then I add it later because I feel like if I see something that catches my interest and I don't pin it I might not ever find it again so I just pin it and then later on I'll edit and so what are their words that you look for do search like how do you sure so for smoke? First I literally started with smoke and of course like lawrence and everything that came up wass smoke literal smoke so I took a few of those pictures but I tried to stay away from that because again I don't want to go with a literal term of smoke so I started looking for some fabric pictures and some shooting through fabric and some ideas of what might look smoke even though it's not actually smoke and I pinned it on there and I of course looked at like smoky eye or smoky gray I put in an o r black or I put in a home break because you know, this fabric here is like an hombre and I thought that smoke kind of looks like own brain hombre is very popular right now so those are the kind of words that I put in it wasn't just smoke it was sort of getting an idea of smoke and figuring out how I can make it work without actually being smoked itself and we have a question from pixie crumbs so what do you do if your taste is kind of all over the place? So she says, you know she likes bright, bold happy colors and a neutral soft ethereal feel to the photos as well. So do you make separate mood boards yet that I was you two different they don't those don't jive would you two totally different shoots to mood boards? I create movements more mood boards for things that even inspire me that might not inspire me at the moment but I can look back on later like I have a mood board called freckles and I have like a bunch of girls or guys or kids whatever that had like tons of freckles because I really want to do a shoot with somebody with tons of freckles um I have a mood board that's uh I just started school color palettes and I just start I came across it because I was trying to look for paint ideas for my new house and I realize people are just very into color palettes like putting together colors and they'll take a photo and pick colors in the photo and make a color palette and it just inspired me so I started pinning color palettes um I have something called you know tiffany blue on dh lace inspirations and generations no r whatever that means since you know so I made that would board I just made them based on sort of a mood that I'm feeling I might call on the leader but yeah make make a lot of mood boards there's free I mean it's like you know, like I said, I'm a collector I liked to collect things so pinterest is the perfect place for me because I can collect them without actually having to you know, purchase anything or have clutter which is awesome but then that's a sort of a place for me to keep my ideas so when I want to go back on them it's there I mean even yesterday um you know, I come I said to me, how do you want to curl your hair? And I said I'm very specific here this is the picture of how I want because I have a make up and hair board and that's and I know okay khun reference that I have a fashion inspiration board so I know like, oh, what I feel like wearing today sometimes sell scrolls go inspiring my outfit based on this picture cause I just don't feel like in the mood today to come up with something on my own you know, it's it's amazing where you could get inspiration from in the world that's so cool you incorporate it into your entire life's totally totally decorating your house organizing your office recipes have a war just for my kids like things so it's like a loser that I could call on pinterest back, okay, what should we do today? Pinterest is one hundred ideas for me to do with my kids, you know, holiday decorations, you name it, I'm telling you it's on pinterest I signed up for a pinterest account like, I don't know several several months ago and it's pretty ones blank, you're very much inspiring. Yeah, you're gonna have tio after and then you know, you make sure you find cool people to follow and then you see their pictures and you're like, well, I never even thought of that that's also, maybe I have a pinterest sport called blur I'm obsessive blurry pictures because now that I know how to focus them properly, I would like to blur them. So, um, I have just one based on blur, and every time I see a blurry picture, I pin it, I won't call black and white. I just love certain black and white photos remember yesterday s are there certain photos that were better in black and white? Well, I never really thought about it, but maybe I should go back to that board and see what about those photos is a common thread that makes them good and black and white you can learn you can educate yourself from pinterest and are they searchable then? Like so you have all these boards and then you can categorize them and yes, totally so if you go to like pinterest dot com forward slash genera agent I have I think sixty seven boards right now which is actually pretty modest I have to say and you will each have a title so you can go just look at them right by the title and speaking of searchable when you pinch bless you when you pin your own photos uh make sure you're putting your website information there were you're tagging them with boudoir something that nature so when somebody else goes to search for things like boudoir your photos come up in their searches. Okay, so we did this already else get past this uh we did this already. Okay, location let's start about that. Um so sometimes I shoot the locate in my studio like I have nowhere else to go and I just have an idea that I want to try toe kind of pole but oftentimes I will find ah different location or I will um base my idea on a location I find sometimes it goes the other way so the next feast uhm pictures that I'm showing you here it was sort of a fifty fifty mix I was really inspired by the location more so than having an idea and pulling off that idea but I shot two days there and I've tried to kind of make the two shoots look a little bit different so he's sort of loosely inspired excuse me on the location. Okay, so let's think of some locations that we can shoot in there some obvious answers here hotels, apartments outdoors aly uh abandoned buildings uh stores some stores will let you shoot in there if you ask them um other studios you have friends that have studios you could swap studios sometimes they don't mind um make sure you get proper permits maybe just giving you some advice not saying I would do it. Um but you should, uh airbnb I want to sort of talk about separately to get are you familiar with airbnb? Okay, you guys know where bandi insure people, right? Yeah. So I just was curious and to get an idea of so if you go to airbnb doc it's a place where people rent out either homes, apartments, um rooms, lofts so let's say I have it I have a second home somewhere and I don't use it that often I might put on airbnb for somebody to rent it by the day by the week by the month um some people have are hard time paying their rent and they might just rent out a bedroom in their house to somebody so I prefer to find a location that's, private, so it's not a room, but it's either a whole home or an apartment, and, um, I will look on there, and sometimes they will say no photo shoots allowed on dh, although I do tell them I'm a photographer and I'd like tio I sort of tell them I'm collaborating with some other, you know, amazing women, and we might take some pictures in there, a sort of making very free, I don't want them to feel that we're gonna go in and wrecked the joint, so I kind of thought, you know, we're working on a project, and we're just looking for a place to collaborate, get away from our kids, you know, have a good day, not lying, but I'm not like, hey, we're going to a sexy boudoir shooting your, you know, place because they tend to go, I don't know about that, and, you know, we'll probably take some pictures to hope you don't mind, then they're usually fine with it. Some places I found that I'm like, oh, yeah, totally going here and then it's like you, we read the rules and it's like no photo shoots police, and I respect that you think that that's fair