Finding and Working with Models


Similar to how there are a range of experience amongst photographers, the same goes for the modeling world. You don’t have to be a professional photographer to book models.

Websites such as are the easiest way to find models with a variety of experience. You can also book models via agency test shoots, use friends friends or browse Facebook

Payment and use of the photos

When working with a model, be sure to work compensation agreement ahead of time. Time for print = Photographer and model works for free. They both use the photos in their portfolio. What will the images be used for?  Be sure to explain your intentions with the photos, especially in the case of  stock photography tell them how the images might be used.

Makeup & Styling

Make sure your models are ready for close-ups. Grooming is critical. Consider hiring a stylist. Hair and/or makeup artist. If you use a make-up artist, ask your model to come neutral, fresh manicure and minimal makeup or hair product.

Working with the model

Play some music and give the model sincere compliments like: “Hello, Wow, you look great today” and “That’s a great pose”. The model should have their own private space to dress and undress. Eg. The bathroom or in the bedroom, should the shoot take place in your own apartment. Some fruits and refreshments for the model is always a plus.

Take more photos than you need

Shoot multiple scenarios and various angles. Move around. Give models various props, scenarios, and emotions to convey. Try not to over-direct them

Model Release is a Must

Always have the model sign a model release at the photo shoot. Don’t expect they will sign it later. Download model release template here.

Photo credits: Styling: Rebeka Kadlicsek; Photography: Megan Alter Photography; Model: Vitoria from Just Models; Location: Sintra, Portugal.

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