Tips for Photographing Amateur Models


It’s pretty common for small businesses to need some photography but not have the budget to hire professional models. So employees, friends and family are called on to volunteer. If this is your situation we want to offer you some advice on working with some less-experienced models.

Cast to match your target demographic.

Make sure your target audience is represented and build from there. What roles do you need to fill? Recruit people who make sense for the shoot, not just whoever is willing to participate.

Fewer models make for an easier photoshoot.

Don’t feel like you need to recruit as many people as possible. Fewer people are easier to control. The more models in frame, the bigger the risk something goes wrong. As you know from any group photo, all it takes is that one person!


Communicate the game plan.

It’s important for your models to understand the purpose of the shoot, the vibe you’re going for and what you want the end results to be. That way they’re in the right frame of mind when they show up and will need less instructions as you go.


Tell them how to dress.

If the clothing isn’t supposed to be the focus of the shoot, it can easily become the focus if you’re not careful. The attire should match the theme and the colors should blend with your environment. Graphic T-shirts and bold patterns can be distracting. And stay away from anything with words or logos.


Keep them engaged throughout the shoot.

Photoshoots can last a LONG time and can be exhausting. Make sure your models are up for it. Give them an idea of what to expect ahead of time and make sure you plan for little breaks if necessary. And as long as they are in front of the camera, keep the energy in the room positive and upbeat. You don’t want exhaustion to show on their faces in those last few photos.


At 2nd Story we've had lots of experience working with professional and amateur models and we'd love to help with your photoshoot, whatever your budget. Contact us and let's work together!

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