How To Survive As A Freelance Photographer In London

22 04 2015

Photo Studio London - photography shoot

Starting out as a freelance photographer can be pretty daunting, especially in a city as competitive as London. There might be plenty of work in the commercial capital of the UK – but there are also plenty of rival photographers. So what will you need to do to not only survive, but thrive, as a freelancer in such an environment?

Freelancer survival tips

One of the huge advantages freelancers starting out today have over those who launched their careers years ago is the Internet. This is the most extraordinarily powerful tool for self-promotion there has ever been. Creating your own website is obvious but once it’s up, you’ll need to draw people to it using social networking. Start to engage with potential clients on LinkedIn, Facebook, Flickr, Tumblr, Instagram and Twitter – show them who you are and what you can do for them.

Attach a blog to your site and use it to share content regularly – put up some of your best pictures and talk about how you achieved the shot. Write a little about the industry or other photographers who have inspired you. Position yourself as a thought leader or influencer with interesting opinions.

One of the hardest things when you’re starting out is knowing how much to charge. You don’t want to under-price yourself simply to get a job. You need to make enough to live on. But on the other hand, you don’t want to price yourself out of the market and let cheaper photographers walk away with all the work. Two things can help you in this respect:

  • Find out every last detail you can about the job. Don’t get caught by surprise demands at the shoot and when you quote a price, specify exactly what’s included in the price. That way, if the client wants something additional, you can renegotiate your fee.
  • Before you mention any figures, ask the client what budget they have for the project. This can give you a good indication of what you’ll be able to charge.

The no brainers!

There are some things you should be doing without anyone having to point them out to you. These include:

  • Selling pictures via stock photography agencies – it won’t make you a fortune but it can help.
  • If you want to be a professional, act like a professional. Even if you have no work on, spend the full day on marketing or promotional activities, or go out and take some shots for your portfolio. Don’t be tempted to stay in bed watching box sets while you wait for the phone to ring.
  • Follow up on every single message, email and enquiry. Even the most unlikely seeming queries can sometimes turn into decent work.
  • Be proactive in finding work – get in touch with local companies to offer your services, search out blogs that might feature your images, think about the sort of work you want to do and identify potential clients. In other words, chase down what you want – don’t wait for it to come to you.

And most of all, work hard and persevere. It might seem slow at the beginning but if you keep at and do the best you’re capable of, you’ll gradually build up a list of clients and those oh-so-valuable word-of-mouth recommendations.

About the Author:

Headshot London Photography studio in London, UK – consists of a group of professional London photographers. With many years’ of photography experience Headshot London often shares their photographic tips on how to achieve the best results during your photographic session. For more information, portrait, events or corporate photography tips please visit their blog

 

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How to Become a Model

10 08 2014
fashion photography - headshotlondon

Professional fashion photography by Headshot London. All right reserved. Copying or unauthorised distribution will be reported for copyright infringement.

We’re all fascinated by supermodels such as Kate Moss and Cara Delevingne. They make millions and lead jet set lives. But they are quite literally one in a million. However, that’s not to say that plenty of other women and men make a good living as photographic models. But don’t be mistaken, it is an extremely competitive business.   If you think you’d like to be a model and are just starting out, here are some professional tips that might just give you the edge.

Make the most of what you’ve got

Invest time and money in yourself and your grooming to ensure that you always look the best you can. You need to be toned and fit, with a healthy glow to your skin and shiny hair. This will take hours of dedication, every single day, but you won’t get any modelling calls if you allow yourself to run to seed. Personal upkeep is an essential element of the job.

Be realistic in your aspirations

If you have no experience as a model, you’re not going to get snapped up for the Chanel catwalk. Just as in any other profession, it takes hard work to reach the top and only a very few do. You also need to have the rights look for the right job. If you are not tall enough for catwalk work, you might still be able to do well as a catalogue model. And remember, if you have fabulous legs or beautiful hands, you can build a career on modelling just a certain part of your body.   There are various different types of modelling. Take a look at the list below to see if one of these might be right for you:

  • catwalk models are usually at the extreme end of tall and skinny, with small chests
  • lingerie models, however, need larger breasts but are still expected to be slim without being bony
  • if you are more curvaceous, you could consider plus size modelling
  • promotional models need to charm and interact with members of the public at trade shows and events
  • editorial models don’t need to be so tall but need a beautiful face and a personality that shines through in pictures
  • you might also find work as an alternative model — if your looks are in some way striking you could be used for more avant-garde work

 

If you want to be a professional model, behave like one

Looks maybe everything in the world of modelling but remember there are thousands of pretty girls and ripped guys out there. You can add value to your brand by building a reputation for professionalism. Always arrive on time, if not early; do whatever is asked of you with a smile; be sure to give 100% whole way through the shoot, no matter if you’re tired or bored. In short, if you’re a pleasure to work with, you’re more likely to get repeat bookings. And make a point of building a professional relationship with the photographers you work with — they can often influence which models are chosen for a job.

Start building your portfolio

Before you even approach an agent, you’ll need to prepare a basic portfolio. Agents and potential clients will want to see a range of photos — head shots, body shots and profiles — to get a clear idea of what you look like. It’s your calling card, showing yourself off as a blank canvas with which they can work. These pictures should be your first investment in your career. They do need to be taken by professional photographer, who will be able to bring out your full potential. If you already have some professional experience, choose the best pictures you have to add to your portfolio. Aim to build a collection of photos that are varied enough to show your versatility. Your portfolio should also contain your contact details and your basic statistics — height, weight, body measurements and shoe size.

Find an agent

Once you’ve created your portfolio, the hard work starts. Don’t expect to get a ‘yes’ from the first agent you approach. You will probably wear out a lot of shoe leather before you are taken on to an agent’s books. However, you can increase your chances by doing your homework. Research model agencies in your area and, if you are interested in a particular type of modelling, seek out agencies that work in that field.   Part of your homework should be to make sure all the agencies you approach are genuine and professional. Model agencies take a commission of your fee for each job they send you on — if they ask you for a substantial sum of money upfront, it is more likely to be con. Don’t get involved with agencies like this.   Once you’ve earned your first job as a model, you’ve got your foot on the first rung of the ladder. It will be a long climb to the top — you will need to be determined and hard-working. And of course, not everyone who tries will make it as a model but if you do, it’s an exciting career that can pay well.

 

(c) Headshot London Photography – Fashion Photographers





GLAMOUR PHOTOGRAPHY: TAKING THE PERFECT SHOT

31 05 2012

Glamour photography has come a long way since the stiff and formal sepia-toned nudes of the Victorian era.  Hugh Hefner caused a revolution with his launching of Playboy magazine in 1953, and since then society has become inured to photographs of naked and scantily clad women, so ubiquitous are images of the female form.  Nowadays nobody is shocked by glamour shots, but there is still an appreciative audience for beautiful photographs that celebrate the female form.

 

The Definition of Glamour Photography

For most people, glamour lies somewhere along the same spectrum as fashion photography; however, generally speaking, glamour images are not shot to promote clothes or product but are actually about the beauty of the human body.  Levels of nudity vary, from full, explicit nakedness to more modest nude shots, strategically composed to hide strategic parts of the body, to pictures of models in lingerie or other scant items of clothing.  The tone can range beautiful and artistic to humourous to straight forward titillation, and this will make a difference to where the images are likely to be published.  The most popular mainstream men’s magazines look for pictures that are super-sexy but on the whole not too explicit – often featuring celebrities who may not be willing to expose everything for the camera.

Techniques for a successful glamour shoot

Like any form of photography, a good glamour photographer knows some tricks of the trade.  Master some of these basic techniques, combine them with a creative eye and you’ll by delighted by the resulting images – as will your model.

  • Plan your shoot carefully beforehand – discuss with your model what you want the images to be like: how much, if anything, will she wear; options for the background; props that might feature; and most importantly the overall tone of the pictures.  The shoot is more likely to be successful if both of you are aiming for the same thing.  Of course, if she’s paying you to take the photos, these choices will be up to her but you can always make suggestions and give guidance if she’s unsure.
  • Do all you can to relax your model prior to and during the shoot as this will make her poses appear more natural.  If she is feeling self-conscious or up tight, this will translate into stiff, rigid body language – and the result will be a photo with little or no sex appeal at all.  Make sure the studio is warm enough or, if you’re shooting on location, be sure that she will have a robe to slip into between shots and do everything you can to maintain her modesty and privacy.  For obvious reasons, it’s not a good idea to try and stage a glamour shoot in a busy public area.
  • Make sure the lighting is appropriate.  Soft focus or diffused lighting is most usually used to avoid over-exposure, as the skin’s surface can be highly reflective.  Contrasting light and shadow can be very effective and shadows can provide modesty for the model or be used to create contours on the naked body.  Filters and diffusers are worth experimenting with to create a hazy, romantic feel that can blur out skin imperfections.  For more modest models, try taking a backlit image – for example, ask them to stand silhouetted in front of a strong light, such as a window.  This will allow you to show the shape of the body without revealing the details; it can be a good way of adding a little mystery to the portrait.

  • Consider the composition carefully – what postures will you ask your model to hold?  How will this work with the surroundings and backdrop?  Make sure you take a selection of landscape and portrait shots to allow maximum flexibility in their later use.  The composition will directly translate into the mood of the picture – do you want your model to appear relaxed, provocative or athletic?  Choose her poses accordingly.
  • Spend time on post production.  Using image manipulation software, you can adjust the colour, brighten or darken the image, remove imperfections and enhance your model’s best features.

Over the last couple of decades, nude photography has shaken off the seedy image of yesteryear, and in today’s world glamour photography is big business.  To be successful in this field, not only do you need the technical skills that all professional photographers have, but you also have to be good with people.  The most successful practitioners of the art are those who can put their model at ease and coax the best out of them without making them feel intimidated, uncomfortable or scrutinised.  For this reason, more and more women are coming into the field as they are less intimidating to female models – but male or female, if you’re easy-going and get on well with people, glamour photography could be the area for you.

(c) HeadshotLondon – All right Reserved





What Headshots are for?

10 05 2010

1. Entertainment Industry
In the entertainment industry headshots are used by the actors, singers, dancers and musicians for castings and auditions. They upload them onto spotlight, equity or casting call pro websites for casting directors to find them. Alternatively, they get an agent to then in turn find castings for them. Whenever suitable casting is on, the agent will send actors headshots to the casting director for consideration.

In the UK headshots are 10×8 spotlight format and are usually black and white. In the USA they are in colour. There several different types of headshots for actors: commercial, theatrical, studio, natural.

2. Corporate Industry
In corporate industry headshots are used for different and varied purposes. Many businesses hire photographers to do their headshots for their websites, press releases, articles in the magazines or national newspapers and book covers. People and clients in general like to know what the business is about and who is behind it, by giving it a personal touch companies / business individuals hope to introduce themselves better to the public. They are called corporate headshots.

Corporate headshots are in colour with business professional dressed in formalwear. Depending on the usage, corporate headshots could be natural (against white background mug shots), studio (studio and more creative), outdoor (shot outside) and artistic (creative).

3. Employment
Professional Headshots could also be used to apply for employment. Many upload their headshots to online profiles on job websites in order to attract more attention to their CV or profile.

4. Modelling
Models photograph modelling headshots / beauty headshots to put in their modelling portfolios or on to their comp cards / z-cards. Modelling headshot shows off their skin and allows the viewer to see model’s face, skin and features much better.

Visit our Actors Headshots photography Page for more information


(c) London Photographers
Tel: 07940 444 641





Perfect Actors Headshots

15 12 2009

Perfect Actors Headshots:

Getting the right headshot is crucial! This is the only chance you may have to land that role you were dreaming about. Quite a few times we ve had actors who were not happy with their headshots after they had their session with someone else. They went for the cheapest or someone they knew. It is may be a good idea for your personal session but not when it comes to professional headshots with a professional headshots photographer.

Make sure before you choose your photographer – conduct your research, i.e. look around at photographers portfolios and see what their reputation is like. If you like it, then give them a call and have a chat about what roles you would like to audition for and when. So remember – photographer’s portfolio is very important!

Before you photography session make sure to have a lot of rest and drink plenty of water to make sure you don’t look tired and you skin is good. Do not worry about your spots or blemishes, professional photographers can retouch them out of the image and no one would be able to tell if they were there in the first place. Remember – all you need to do is to feel comfortable on the day. Easy to say…yes, it is actually quite easy if you tell yourself you are having a day off and going out with a bunch mates to have fun! Well, I guess you cannot programme yourself but seriously – just relax and have fun…. we don’t bite:-)  Also remember this photography session is for you and it all about you! We know what we are doing and we make sure we are doing it very well!

Actors Headshots Photography Studio in London, UK
http://www.headshotlondon.co.uk
Tel: 07940 444 641





Corporate PR Photographers in the heart of the City of London

1 06 2009

headshot-london-corporate-photography

Getting right PR for your business is important if not critical in the current economic climate. Image is everything and therefore getting the right message about yourself, your company and your services to your target customers has never been as crucial as it is now.

Being a small, medium or a large business in the city does not mean you should spend thousands of pounds on promoting yourself. Therefore a simple professional corporate photography session could be the right step forward to getting your image and the right message to your customers. Those professional shots could then be used for all kinds of purposes.

First they could be sent to local newspapers or magazines together with the latest news and developments about your company. If the media is interested in your company, those professional corporate headshots could also then be used along with an interview you are approached to give.

Internet marketing rapidly increases competition between businesses, which means millions of potential customers turning to online shops and services for convenience, research and better deals. Therefore, secondly, having the right website with the right imagery portraying professional staff, products and services could help to deliver the right message to your target market and potential customers.

Smaller businesses also need to network a lot on and off the Internet in order to inform potential clients about their services, therefore corporate portraits could also be used for online profiles.

Corporate headshots for CVs are being increasingly important nowadays in some industries as they make your CV look professional. Hence looking good and portraying the right image and personality could increase your chances of getting that job.

To sum up, using professional corporate photography services will help your business to succeed and most importantly it could help you to survive.

If you are in the City of London, then do not hesitate to give us a call, as we are located next to the Bank station.

 

For more information and our online corporate headshots and PR portfolio please visit Corporate Photographers website

 

Headshot London Photography
http://www.headshotlondon.co.uk
Tel: 07940 444 641





Fashion Photography Session -What to look out for / What is included (advise)

10 02 2009

 

What to look out for prior to the session:

When looking for a professional photographer, first have a look around and see whose photographer’s portfolio and style you like the best. Have a look around their site for prices, what is included in your session, frequently asked questions, and of cause for the style of images that are displayed on the website.

Once you are happy with everything you have seen and want to go ahead with booking your session, give your chosen photographer a call to see if and when they have a free booking slot available for you.

Be careful when you are calling the number from an advertisement. On several occasions we had to report inappropriate advertisements that were claiming to be us and were displaying our imagery, but had no association with us whatsoever. So, always call a number from the website and not from the advertisement you just read.

Also, be careful, when booking a session with a make-over studio. They usually have professional sales teams working for them making cold calls and hard sales. Many claim that you have won a free photo shoot, with free make up. Then charge you just a nominal fee (which many claim will be refunded). Once you went their conveyer belt and had a photography session, the next step is that an experienced sales person will try and sell you all the images for thousands of pounds, charging around £70 for each image taken.

One more thing – If you are just starting in modelling, it is very important prior to the shoot to visit an agent. See what they say and if they like you.
Most agencies will accept you if they like you without a professional photography session. All they need is a snap shot of you that they usually take there and then. After they sign you, they will send you around to different photographers for test shoots – which will help you to build your portfolio.
We therefore, advise you to speak to your agent prior to the shoot! This is not a discouragement – we work with agents in the modelling industry who already have particular jobs in mind for their clients. However, they are not able to put the girls/boys forward for the shoots without a portfolio. They therefore send them to us. This is also common but with reputable agents.

However, if it is simply a session for yourself or your loved one, then skip the previous advice and read on about what the photography session usually consists of.

There are several things that you should expect from the Fashion Photography session you book with Headshot London Photography:

First, on the arrival we are going to have a little chat with you about the required style you are after. We will also have a look through some images that you might have brought with you that inspired you to have a photo shoot in the first place… and naturally coffees, teas, water and other soft drinks will be offered

Second, is clothes styling. It is always a good idea to bring a lot of changes with you, i.e. tops, bottoms, shoes, dresses, etc… and a lot of accessories too! We will have a look at all the clothing you brought with you for the shoot and will help you to style them.

Third, is the make-up and hair styling. We have several make-up artists working for us on a freelance basis. All our fashion sessions include their services. Depending on the length of the shoot, several make up applications will be done during the day. Full day portfolio will have at least 3 or 4 different make-up applications and at least 3 or 4 different hairstyles if required.

Fourth, after all the preparations we start with the shoot! We have many sets and backgrounds and ideas, as well as the outside area, which should give a great diversity to the shoot.

Full day portfolio should consist of :

Full day modelling portfolios  should include at least 4 different styles:

1. Beauty – to show your skin and hair
2. Underwear/Bikini – to show your body shape
3. Fashion – to show your diversity
4. Commercial – to show your diversity and the character

After the session:

1. All our sessions are all-inclusive, i.e. one package and no other costs involved.
2. After the session we will put all the images taken (minus the edits) in your private online gallery on our website, usually within a day.
3. Email you and your agent the link to your online gallery
4. You can have a look at all the images and then send us the codes of the images you would like us to retouch and also if you would like any of them to be in Colour or Black and White.
5. Half day session usually includes 5 (worth £300) free retouches and full day includes 10 (worth £600). Any additional image retouches are charged at £60 each.
6. All images retouched to the highest quality:
• Spots/Blemishes removed
• Colour adjustments performed
• Nip-tuck (if requested)
7. We usually send you a CD within a week after your session.
8. The CD will include
• Retouched portfolio images
• All the images from the photo shoot
• All images are high resolution and ready for printing

On a final note:

We hope you will find this information useful and it will give you a general idea of what to expect and what to do when getting ready for your fashion photography session.

For more information please visit our Fashion Photographers page.

(c) All rights are reserved by Headshot London Photographers at http://www.headshotlondon.co.uk