Modelling advice on choosing a professional model portfolio photographer in London.
First of all you want to make sure that the model portfolio photographer you choose is a professional fashion and commercial photographer - not a makeover studio (or worse a hair salon). It would be a waste of time and money to choose a photographer that is known purely as a portfolio photographer with no fashion credentials. There are a lot of photography studios out there who do not have their own in-house photographer who is well-known in the industry and so the studio might only showcase a few of their best images. Do they mention on their website the name of the photographer? If not there is likely to be a reason for it. If they do, Google the photographer, check out their Instagram - how many followers do they have? Have they photographed for any well-known publications or photographed models from the top modelling agencies?
Secondly, do not waste time with a portfolio photographer who does not have model agency credits from the big modelling agency names. The leading model agencies are very selective in terms of the photographers they work with, so if the photographer does not have a number of top modelling agency credentials then your model portfolio shoot is likely to be a waste of time and money as they would not be able to use any of the images in their model books.
Your model portfolio is an essential tool for castings and your one chance to impress.
You need a model book in order to get modelling jobs as the clients will want to see how you look in photographs. If you look beautiful in person but your look and uniqueness doesn’t translate into pictures then photographic modelling might not be the right career for you.
The right posing (and not overposing) is very important and therefore it is important to choose an experienced model portfolio photographer who can give you the right posing guidance. If you are male you might want to check out their male model portfolios and experience of photographing men. Also you might want to ask yourself whether you would feel more comfortable shooting with a male or female photographer - most male models prefer to shoot with a female photographer but you might have a different preference. From my experience the majority of parents prefer a female photographer irrespective of whether they are looking for a model portfolio for their son or daughter.
If you find a cheap model portfolio photographer (or more expensive one) do check out their work first and their credentials. Can they show you their work on top model agency websites like Elite? What fashion brands have they worked with? Do they provide a fashion wardrobe for men and women? Variety is very important in model portfolios so it can really help if the studio provides some fashion clothing.
Showcasing versatility as a model is very important.
Also check what is included in their packages as often packages of some studios might appear cheaper but you are likely to find that you don’t get to take all your photos from the shoot and have to pay as much as £70 per each photo! For just 5 photos that would add up to additional £350 so make sure you know what is included before you pay any photo shoot deposit. This all adds up and is a tactic that a lot of studios use to try to appear cheaper than their competition. Check if you get to take away all the photos with you at the end of the shoot as some photographers make a fortune for charging per photo, print or product after photoshoot. Are the package prices really all-inclusive? If they are you will walk away with all your photos on the day.
The best model advice I can give to anyone wanting to become a model is NOT to give any money to modelling advice agencies, model support services or model agencies. Reputable model agencies charge commission from work they get you and will never ask you to pay any fee!
Beware of any so called modelling advice agencies where they ask you to ‘register free today’ on their website and upload your recent photo. Watch out for small print where you need to check a box ‘I understand that …is not an agency’ which is a sign to stay away. Typically they will tell you that you have modelling potential before asking you to pay a large fee first in order to ‘become a model’ and then you will probably never hear from them again. Also beware of any model agencies that ask for any upfront fees. No one should be charging you for modelling advice and a good model portfolio photographer will give you free modelling advice which can be invaluable. Also no one can apply to good agencies on your behalf - only you can do that so do NOT pay anyone for this service!
Model portfolio shoots by Fashion Photographer Zuzana Breznanikova of London Photo Portfolios
Our photographer’s model photo shoots as featured on top model agency websites