I was asked a couple of days ago by a young aspiring model, “What was your first shoot like, and what can I expect?” This got me thinking about my first ever shoot, not my first one for a client, but my first time in front of the camera…my test shoot.
Wow was that an experience, it was so scary and being a country girl, and far more of a tomboy than a girly girl, the idea of having my hair and make up done was not one I was looking forward to…in fact it was quite daunting. Even though I was 15 I actually didn’t own any make up and never EVER wore any!
The shoot was in a London studio with the brilliant photographer Nicole Marie Winkler who could not have made me feel more at ease and comfortable in front of the camera.
I turned up at the studio and was introduced to everyone very quickly before being whisked away into hair and make up. My hair was very natural as was my make up, which was a relief to me!
The next part of the day was probably the most surprising to me and definitely the most uncomfortable; little did I know that changing rooms do not exist in the modelling world, you just have to change in front of everyone! I really hated it because it was so abnormal to me (I would imagine the same for most people) and I felt very awkward…however I’ve had to get used to it and now on a shoot I don’t think twice about it , in fact I’m probably undressed before I’ve even been shown the outfit!
Next was actually being in front of the camera…let me just paint you a little picture of what it looks like when you first step onto a standard set. Huge lights blaring down on you, a cross of tape on the floor where you need to stand, lots of people staring straight at you with tilted heads checking their hair, make up and clothes are all still looking good, and lastly the camera in the centre of all of this staring straight at you with the photographer behind it ready to work. Was this scary and intimidating? Of course! But I was working with the most lovely team who looked after me and helped me understand what was going on the best they could!
We did three different outfits in about an hour, it was all so quick and easy and I really did enjoy it!
When I saw the photographs, there were some that were good and some that were not so good…I shall put them below so you can see.
My three top tips to models on their first shoot are:
1. Listen to what the client wants – if you listen to them and take direction well, you’re a dream!
2. Don’t worry when the team look at you strangely on set and whisper to each other – they are looking at the hair or make up or how the overall look is, and whether it fits in with the rest of the shoot.
3. If in doubt call your agent – I can not express this more heavily. If you are ever asked to do something you feel uncomfortable with; whether that is something you have to wear or the team wanting to cut your hair or bleach your eyebrows etc, just excuse yourself to the bathroom and phone your agent, they will sort it out, and without making things awkward for you.
I hope this helps any of you aspiring models out there, enjoy your first shoot and the many more to come too!
Bye for now