Skip to main content

Selecting Outfits

Lesson 14 from: High School Senior Photography

Sal Cincotta

buy this class


Sale Ends Soon!

starting under


Unlock this classplus 2000+ more >

Lesson Info

14. Selecting Outfits

Lesson Info

Selecting Outfits

We can see here right now and I'll get on this side I want you guys come on over here I want everybody to see these air the outfits that are senior today brought in for us and this is everything that came in what tellers then going to do and you'll notice here we've got all these outfits and then here I don't know if we could get a close up shot of this, but we've got all our shoes and all our jewelry uh over here laid out because it's all about accessories, especially for girls right gotta accessorize so we're going to do this walk us through what what they brought in and what made you make certain selections like take the audience through your selection process so just to set the tone of what they're experiencing when they first get to the studio as soon as I see them drive up I'm waiting by the front door kes I don't want them to like, you know, be knocking there need help carrying all their stuff in, so as soon as I see them pull up I go greet them at their car I help them bring al...

l their stuff in and I'm getting him excited like, oh my gosh, look at the sky we have this gorgeous blue sky today it's like eighty degrees you have an amazing day, so they're already pumped and then I go put them in the makeup chair and I start spreading out all their outfits just like you see here and when they walk into the studio they're hearing john mayer just stones some relaxing hip music, eh? So we just want to create this environment of relaxation because everyone's nervous when they come in for a photo shoot offer them water soda snacks do you need anything all right set mom up in a chair don't make or just stand there you know make sure everyone's comfy and then also set the time to be attendants be attentive yeah word right make them as comfortable as you can and also this upright next the make up chair so I'm not like often another room I'm sitting there talking with them making small chit chat while I'm picking that stuff out and so I'm just gonna explain to you what's going on in my head as I'm picking stuff out um not if you do me a favor I'm so sorry to cut you off can you do me a favor? You and I have been doing this for a long time I want you to tell these guys why you didn't pick certain things well okay I think that's important because uh they don't they don't see what we didn't pick there's a reason we didn't select certain outfits right? So the first thing with outfits pick up magazines, read vogue read uh w magazine whatever it is a fashion magazine you have to stay on top of trends because they change so much and you don't want to alienate yourself from the senior uh that's why I do the styling I mean south can do it if he wants to but me being a girl all right, I know the big baggy t shirts are in style but they look horrible on camera and so I know I won't pick that kind of stuff and I can explain that to the senior when I don't pick that stuff because like, oh well that's my favorite t shirt well, I know it's really cool and in style but when it photographs because it's so baggy and makes you look like you're heavier than you actually are so if it's okay with you, I'd like to do this one instead they're like, oh yeah, whatever you say all right, so that when I'm looking at this rack the first thing that pops out to me is this purple dress so this to me is really whimsical way like to do an outfit that really stands out from the rest of them and create something unique so to me this is unique it's really whimsical we've got this great diamond jewellery tto make it fancy if we want and just looking at this thank you I noticed these shoes these are whimsical too right these are perfect. So I know this is gonna be amazing. Shot it's probably gonna be the last outfit that sal does because the last outfit is you should their best when they start out with their photo shoot. There's so nervous that we picked the worst outfit to start with because we know we're really not gonna get a whole lot of good stuff out of it. Yeah, let's, pause that second. Does that make sense to everybody? You may look like I'm in love with this outfit, right? I've got thoughts in my head she's twirling she's, doing something. Who knows what what's going on, but I can see this being a signature shot for me in my studio and something they're gonna want his artwork on their home. Well, I already know from experience the kids are going to be super super nervous when that starts. I would never start in that outfit. I would end in that. Now that took time for taylor not to figure out our work flow together so that she understood that would be my last outfit that she's now comfortable. I've been working with the senior for an hour and a half, two hours all her nerves are gone and boom, we're going to nail it in this particular outfit. Go ahead and talking about the quantity of outfits we like to do between three and five, depending on what session they go with. So we have a local session that gives them, like a shorter amount of time, less outfits, and then our top package includes more time and more outfits. Uh, you want to make sure you have a range of style so you don't want to have everything dressy or everything casual because that's gonna hurt your sale, you want to have a much diversity is possible, so we like to have casual jeans, maybe some slacks, maybe a cotton sundress, and then maybe a cocktail dress, so I know I've got one of my rangers covered I've got super dressing and so looking through here, you can see, we've got our favorite baggy sweaters that we're not going to use. And so there's a lot of these in this thing, right and it's wrinkled, it's wrinkle it looks like it might be a little bit faded or or warn so that's, just something I wouldn't pick um, more baggy t shirts, strapless dresses uh, when you were a strapless dress, we all get this little pinching things right under armpits it doesn't matter how skinny you are, it happens and a dr sell crazy, so yeah, so we try and stay away from sharp little thing, but it makes me crazy we try and stay away from strapless dresses if possible especially the cotton ones that really thin sun dresses that air just like one piece of elastic up here those really make that pinch there and I love this color but sal hates it so we never shoot anything teal uh that's just his personal preference so I know not even pick the stress I'm crazy it's very crazy something else we do we encourage thie senior to bring a solid black and a solid white shirt. The reason we do this is because you never know what they're going to bring it's a fail safe so if they bring all these crazy patterns and t shirt so that we don't like we know okay, we've got a solid white in the solid black and we can make it work somehow your question what what is it about teel that you don't like? I don't know I just had a really bad experience with tio when I was a kid in the eighties character is back in the nineteen eighties it's carried on ever since you know, I don't know, you know we all have our preferences you know what we like? I just do not particularly care for the color teal and how it looks with skin tones s o that is a personal preference makes me coo coo so I don't own anything teal and if you ever photograph with me don't bring teal that's it law has been laid um you know back to your point I don't know if you guys caught that we don't pick a lot of patterns if you go to our website you'll notice a lot of solids I don't like patterns patterns to me date the picture does that make sense so we don't want to date that photograph now if the kid it's one of their favorite outfits you might see one pattern sneak into the session and that's ok and that might actually be the first outfit that we photograph so again when I'm looking at this rack one thing another thing that stands out to me is this leather jacket to me that kind of pops out I know you could do a lot with jackets it creates two outfits uh from one so you khun dio with the jacket without the jacket having them holding it I mean you could do so many different things with it and it's going to create a different style uh so we've got kind this rocker edge with a black leather jacket so I know I want incorporate this somehow I like this blue shirt again it's solid but then it's edgy because we've got black trim and then I saw these black shorts she had one concern night do you have with this outfit is the length of the shirt and the length of the shorts I'm afraid that it might look like just one t shirt you're not you don't see her shorts that doesn't look good so we'll have to have her try this on to make sure that it looks right on her and we'll have kids do that at the studio if we're not sure about an outfit and how it's gonna fit on them we'll have them tried on before we go out on location so we can change it if we need teo um this plaid shirt these are also in style I don't like it because of the pattern I think it makes him look like a lumberjack and it's not flattering at all so yeah we'll stay away from that ah I love this white lace shirt and this is a bag your shirt if you're going to do a baggy top if you have no choice make sure you do fitted bottoms so you don't want to do baggy baggy or tight tight all the time tight tight can look ok if they have the right body type but it's good to kind of mix it up so these jeans have these great detail here and I'm that I love the lace and they noticed the necklace that I picked with it a big thing that drives me crazy is the necklines and necklaces when you do photo shoots you never want to compete with it so if you're going to do a necklace with the top like this you either want to stay above the neck lines so the necklace doesn't intersect the collar so something tighter or you want to go the opposite direction something really long so it just drops to the middle of the shirt. Yeah, so if you have a very big open neckline uh you'd want something that city inside of that if you have a shorter tighter crop up here you want something that's going beyond that so that like taylor said it's it's not competing so some questions dealer do you because they really insist on doing something like that? Do you ever clamp it like behind for you till sal and now you take that baggie make it they like it absolutely okay should carry some clams with you, get him at any of the hardware store and get a bag for like five bucks just carry some keep something like that with you teo make it a little more form fitting and we have those because we're doing model shoots magazines things like that so we'll have those handy anyway but hopefully everyone here before we start moving on understands have we conveyed the importance of this step in the process? This is what goes on behind the scenes before this this senior has ever stepped in front of the camera I cannot underscore how important this is uh, enough if she taylor doesn't do all this prep work the photographs don't look as good as they do. Does that make sense questions? Yeah. Oh, yes we have a lot of president a question from eric later photography in there, julie several people asking this what do you say when you have a senior that wants to wear a very revealing outfit that is pretty inappropriate. You should tell the story of you know what? Yeah, I know. Um it happens that seniors these days some I don't understand how they walk out of the house wearing what they were but it happens if the parents there we differed amon so mom this to me it's going to come down to here so it's gonna be pretty revealing? Are you okay with that? If they're ok with it? I mean it's their choice. But we actually had one incidents where this, uh teenage girl wore a dress very, very tight, very short mini dress and we had her posing and, you know, just doing our thing way ask mommy made sure that it was okay. Um they came in to see the pictures and because her dress was so short you could see under it and the white side of her butt cheek from you know what I'm talking about like ten you have your butt cheek I'm sorry visual you could see underneath her butt cheek revealing but imagine this of when they're seeing these pictures for the first time dad's there and we come to this picture and dad says what is that no you're not you're not saying dad is six foot four monster dude would you squash me like with one thumb and he's like what's that were like what's what? Uh right he's like zoom in so we zoom in and you see that showing and I looked right out I go dad just so you know I asked mom about this outfit and he's like oh there's no doubt you ask my wife and he looks at his wife was like this crap had better stop immediately because his daughter was like six foot six foot one beautiful girl but no common sense with the way they were dressing the seventeen year old girl but to taylor's point and for you guys out there it's not on me to play you know police from for my clients it's up to them I can not that's not my job my job is to create the photograph not make those kinds of personal decisions I think okay let's see here um how do you handle this is from small mop who in olympia, washington how do you handle seniors who show up with only a few outfits when you specifically told them ten outfits for a long session? Do you just work with it? You have to, um if they only bring three outfits than your shooting three outfits and you just have to mix up your locations more so maybe do two locations per outfit just to give you more diversity and if you can switch up the outfit by adding a hat or maybe clamping it or adding a jacket, do that we have a question in the audience. How long does this whole procedure take? How long before their shoot do they arrive? So it depends on makeup, so our makeup we told our artists you've got thirty minutes to do makeup and so I've got thirty minutes to put this together and then once I pick out the specific outfits I'll show it to sound to make sure he likes it first and that he doesn't want to change anything for the seniors ever seen before the senior gets to see the outfits and then I'll show it with the senior as soon as they're done with makeup and make sure they don't want to change anything if you have a senior who doesn't have a lot of accessories, do you guys have, like some go to stuff in your studio where you don't want to like some like it no, we don't keep any accessories a lot of girls just like I'm not into jewelry I just don't like it then that's their personality I mean as unfortunate it is because it makes the pictures pop when they have a little bit of sparkle or something if it's not their personality we don't want to try and force it on them then they're not gonna like the picture you see what you're saying? Yeah so when we started off we were battling with this idea of like going getting a bunch of costume jewelry, having it there at the studio so that they could use it but then we realized they're wearing jewelry that's not theirs that they don't like anyway so now when the pictures come in that became an objection well, I don't really like that necklace so now it's, we don't have to worry about that you're bringing what's yours and what you you like so you could never look back to us and go well, I don't like that outfit I don't like that jewelry you're the one who brought it so if you brought it we can assume you you like it so and we may get there we may see this later because I know you're going on the roof but for anybody who's not here is going to be eighty eighty five today doesn't seem like that jacket woodwork you picked it yeah so so even in st louis one hundred five ninety percent humidity you're putting him in the jacket I got kids come with a wool coat uh why they brought a wool coat I have no idea what they want that's your favorite coat but you're going to make him enjoy it we're gonna make it enjoy they're gonna enjoy sweating yes something else I'm sorry I want to point out is if you notice I put everything on one hanger this is important so this not only helps them keep the outfits organized because sal shoots on location and they change on location this makes it easy so they're not mixing up what goes with what and itjust travels easier that way so I'll put everything that I can on one hanger including the clothes jewelry even shoes if it's a strappy shoe all hanging on the outfit just one shoe they know exactly what goes with that because I will forget when we get on location and sometimes I'm not in the studio when taylor is doing this if I've got a three or four shoot day teller is I'm already on location the next shoot is coming so what they'll do is they'll keep all the yeses all the yes outfits separate from all the notes all the nose might go in the trunk and then in the back of the car all the essence air just hanging you know on the side hanger handle so that when they get there I see this and what we also have our ziploc bags in the studio so the little mini's it blocks so that if there's a loose earrings rings or anything they're wearing we just snap the ziploc bag right over this so that when I get when it's on location for me I just grabbed this and I know I've got everything that goes with that outfit very important to stay organised you've got a child it was great from many, many mistakes though we are well that's for me calling taylor but I'm like what choose go with these jeans, right silver ones done down okay, well, well, well, we have so many questions question from clark sanders you talked about this yesterday, but lots of folks are asking it when on location where do you have them change their outfits? We have a pop of changing tube made by california sun bounce you could get out of being a jew, but it folds up to just like a visor for a car. It folds up to this girl like a reflection like reflector folds up and then it's just a giant too I mean, you could probably make one they're so easy, but these I don't I'm not a crafty person, so we just pull this up, I hold it up and they change inside we'll do that in the middle of, you know, new york city will be in the middle of times square holding this tube up, and people are changing inside it. You drop it, there changed and you move on your day because they're not gonna want to get in and out of a car, especially they've got a dress on and how you blocking all the windows to give them privacy? So having that tube is well worth it, I think it's one hundred forty or one hundred fifty dollars, but well worth it definitely question from abs girl, what about suggestions for heavier size seniors? Suggestions in the sense of what posing or outfits? Yeah, why don't we answer both two outfits? S o, just like the baggy shirts will make any girl look back that goes for plus sized girls to what we encourage them is to, uh, pick clothes that are form fitting you don't want to, you know, so tight that it's showing every wrinkle, every crease or so lose that they look heavier than they are. You want to make sure that for their body type it fits, and so they'll bring clothes and just like this and they might fit them or not, so you just have to take a look at them in their body type on dh what's gonna look good. Uh it's really just a case by case basis don't you think you know I do you know there's two parts of this tailor's gonna handle wardrobe I'm gonna hit long location posing so my job really the studio's job is to create the best version of you if you will write so just because you're plus size doesn't mean you're not beautiful just because you're you know you have acne doesn't mean you're not beautiful our job is to create the best version of them whatever the case may be and that's going to be a combination of outfits postproduction posing, lighting right the runs off and it may not bother them like they maybe plus size but they're not insecure about it so I don't want to make them and secure about it if their plus size and they come with a lot of likes strappy stuff that's going to show their arms, you just make sure you pose them in a way where their arms not flat ng us their side you know you push it out that is an important point. We'll see it just like we won't pick outfits that are really tight where rolls air showing or anything like that the one thing we do I don't want to do is a lot of sleeveless stuff for girls who have heavier arms that becomes a challenge if you want to sell a full full body portrait you're not hiding any of that stuff so you know definitely will err on the side of covering up but still playing to their body type another thing is heels, heels, heels a hate doing flats and it doesn't matter if they're plus or not plus size heels are just so much more flattering on a woman's body it just sculpts their legs and their rear and so I picked heels for everything if I can if they don't if they brought enough diversity which it looks like she did well put heels with everything dresses it up yeah, a couple more questions I mean I think that we could do a whole workshop that's topping understand? Yeah this is this is good this is when we do our all day workshops it's interesting as much as I have the tires you wanna wearing like all the you know what your settings, what lenses they're using uh this is the part where I'm like I don't think you get it behind the scenes without this going on this magic I'm struggling it doesn't matter what aperture I'm shooting out way need this to happen so I'm glad the audience has a lot of questions around uh another point is with jewelry you don't want to do too much or too little so if you're going to do a big chunky necklace don't do big chunky hearings it's too much competing right here so if you're going to do a big, chunky necklace, maybe do a big ring or a big bracelet, so you don't want to compete with the jewelry, and then if you've got a shirt that has, like, really details or some kind of detail ing around the neckar ruffles, sometimes you won't do a necklace at all because you don't again want to put too much stuff going on here is that it competes, maybe just two big earrings by itself. One more question, then we're gonna get kendra out here and reveal what we've selected for us, and I could see how taylor would handle that conversation with kendrick. Okay, perfect. Well, we have about three people asking about I'll take d r photos from rochester. How do you deal with on location make when they get hot and makeup melts or need needs touch ups? There's a lot of those questions our makeup artist because we worked with the same makeup artist for the last four or five years. They know that we need touch up kit, so with each senior, they give them a touch up kit that has blotting papers, uh, pop so that they can wipe away sweat and touch up lip gloss, so we encourage the seniors after every outfit. Blood and touch of your lips it doesn't matter if your lips have a color as long as they're shiny with lips. Bring out the eyes and eyes, bring out the lips and it makes the picture is perfect. Yeah, the blotting paper are I mean, they're not that expensive. You don't want the kids wiping sweat because the makeup will melt and in st louis off. We're shooting in july and august. No lie it's one hundred to one hundred ten degrees with the heat index and we're still shooting in the middle of the day, so the kids air hot. We're taking breaks in between sets. You know, sats were putting him in the car a c blown on him. But without that blotting paper to remove sweat and not make up, we would have some issues. Another thing is the right type of makeup. So you want to find a makeup artist that uses airbrush foundation and what that is it's, waterproof and sweat proof, and it lasts for sixteen hours. So even if they are sweating because it's uh, that airbrush foundation, they can just blood and the makeup won't melt off. Yeah, that's very, very important.

Class Materials

bonus material with purchase

Sal Cincotta Pricing.pdf

bonus material with enrollment


Ratings and Reviews

a Creativelive Student

I have been shooting seniors now for 6 years. I have to say this is the best course I have ever had online! My head is still spinning trying to process it all. (luckily I gave in and bought the course :) I was going to be printing my marketing magazine for my seniors this week. After the first day of this series, I completely changed my pricing structure and felt so much better about how it would work for me! That is what is amazing about this series. It has incredible amounts of information that the newest photographer to the seasoned photographer can take and use in the business. I watched all three, took notes like crazy; watched again and still could not get all the info I wanted on paper. So I did the logical thing. I bought it! I was so impressed with the down-to-earth style of teaching that Sal and Taylor use and how open they were to sharing so many helpful aspects of how they do business. I really wanted to buy another backdrop, but I truly believe my $99 for this series will reap way more benefit for my business. Thanks so much Sal and Taylor! Now... to go redo that marketing info. :)

a Creativelive Student

This course is amazing. Sal offers a truly comprehensive path toward success in a step-by-step way that leaves nothing out. You can tell he's very secure in his success and his skills and, therefore, can truly share his knowledge. This workshop is great for amateurs and experienced alike. And, unlike many other presenters, Sal doesn't spend exorbitant amounts of time bemoaning the existence of "shoot and burners" ... instead, he inspired even them to raise their game - benefiting the industry overall. Nice. You must buy this workshop.

Student Work