Biggest Mistakes When Structuring Your Fashion Shoot

Incoherent Brief

The brief for your fashion shoot is simply the objectives for the day
and outlines the plan to the photographer and client. This helps all parties
involved understand the vision for the shoot. The brief should contain all the
elements for the shoot including - 

  • Styling 
  • Hair / Make-up
  • Aesthetic 
  • Lighting
  • Mood
  • Location
  • Subject

These should all be organised in a comprehensive way that can be
communicated to the whole team so everyone can envision the direction of the
fashion shoot. The brief can then be shown to the client so they can tailor the
fashion shoot to their own preferences and ultimately be happy with the result.

Un-focused Mood Board 

A mood board is a collection of images that inspire the end result of
the fashion shoot. Images can be collected from a variety of sources such as
digitally and resources such as magazines. These can be tricky to orchestrate
as you need to select the most relevant material to match your focus for the
shoot. One way you can make sure you pick the best images is by being extra
critical when viewing material - ask yourself ‘does this fit the vision of the
shoot?’. Further to this, the images should be based around the overall concept
of the shoot, the easiest way to do this is by looking at other shoots
and editorials that share a
similar vision.

Un-Professional Team

When selecting a team for your fashion shoot, you will need at least
both a subject and a photographer. When selecting a photographer, make sure you
have seen a portfolio of their images to ensure that they can shoot a style
that fits the brief - click here to see
examples of Kimberly Archer photography. Much like with a photographer, you
will want to see examples of the models’ work, including head-shots. This means you
can see if the model fits the concept of the brief and has the right look to
execute the brief. To help with this, it is good to hold a model casting, so
you can see if the models have a positive attitude and will work well to meet
the brief. In order to have a team that works well together you will need to
ensure that everyone has a good understanding of the brief to avoid
miscommunication and mistakes being made on the shoot day.

Ineffective Call Sheet

The call sheet is essential when organizing the shoot day as it gives
the team all the essential information needed for the day to run smoothly and
keep to a time scale. The information provided should include location, team
roles and contact info, and the date and time of the shoot. This should be
provided to staff prior to the shoot day so they know all detail in advance and
can make any arrangements they need to conform to the requirements set out.

Overall, preparation and organization are the key to the success of the
fashion shoot. If either of these things aren’t done well, then there will be
miscommunication between the team which will lead to discrepancies in the
outcome of the concept as the vision will not be coherent and clear to the

To contact Kimberly Archer click here

Fashion - Pricing for your fashion shoot

There are a lot of elements to think about when it comes to pricing your fashion shoot. In this article, we are going to be looking at some of the elements that need to be taken into consideration and how they all add up to make the grand total. So, if you want to know about how fashion shoots are priced, keep reading down below.


The first thing that we need to look at is planning the shoot. This takes time and a lot of effort, which is why it ends up contributing to the overall price. The photographer needs time to make sure everything has a place, and then that everything is going to fit into that place when the time comes around. It can be quite a big job to plan out a shoot, depending on the requirements that you have given. You may wish to consider employing a stylist or set designer for bigger shoots. 

Getting A Team

It’s not just one person with a camera that makes an entire shoot happen, and that is what some people don’t realise about the process. You need a team for hair and makeup if this is necessary, a photographer to shoot pictures, a photo assistant if lighting equipment is being used and also someone who will arrange wardrobe and garments. You are also going to need someone to edit the photos once they have been taken so that they can look as good as possible, and all of these people need to be paid.

Scouting A Location

Something else that needs to be done is finding a location. It is not always as simple as having one place readily available at all times, that will be ready in time for a shoot. If there is not already a location that has been agreed upon, then one needs to be found and rented for the time of the shoot. This can sometimes take quite a while, and if there is a charge for using the space that you have decided to shoot at, then this needs to be considered into the overall price.

Editing The Pictures

You need a specialist to edit the pictures once they have been taken to ensure that they are finished to the highest possible standard. If you want your photos to come out looking amazing, then this is a step that can’t be missed, and it is vital to the entire shoot. Editing pictures from a shoot can take quite a bit of time and requires a professional if you want your pictures to attract the right kind of attention.

How Much Does It Cost?

So, how much does it actually cost for your photo shoot? As a general guide; stylists are anywhere from £250-£800 per day. Photographers are usually between £500-£1,200 per day dependant on skill input required, although larger scale advertising shoot day rates may be into the thousands of pounds. It is possible younger photographers may shoot under £500 per day. Photo assistants range about £250-£500 per day dependant on the level of skill needed. Make-up and hair artists £150-£500 per day. Location rates are largely dependant on the scale of the shoot and can be free on certain streets and outside! A lovely venue can be sourced for around £1,000 per day. Decent photo editors are £200-£400 per day. Lastly, don’t forget a wardrobe/prop budget if you need any complimentary pieces…or convince other designers to lend something :)

Killer tips for preparing your fashion shoot

Fashion photography is one of those niches which thrives best on a beautiful combination of careful planning, creativity & commercial knowledge. Your fashion images are a visual representation of your brand & the most powerful part of communicating your looks with your audience. Combining the elements of your shoot together perfectly will tell the story with the greatest impact. The better planned you are & the greater clarity you have will result in more ease come shoot day. In this post, we are going to take a look at some tips to ensure that your fashion shoot is a truly successful one.

1.     Determine the purpose of the shoot 

Most fashion designers need 3 sorts of images: 1) Lookbook style images which show off your product on a model on a fairly neutral background 2) Editorial images which give a flavour of the lifestyle of your brand. Potentially shot outside or in a house/warehouse location & communicate in an emotive way. 3) Flat lay product shots showing the detail of the product. Lookbook & Editorial shots can be combined on the same shoot day/s & product shots are usually shot separately in studio. What will these shots be used for - website / social media / PR / Brochures / Editorial / Ads? What size & will the images be used in landscape/portrait? Having clear and well communicated goals will set you up for a super great result.

2.     Create a mood board 

Visual references are the most effective way to communicate your vision for your concept & therefore mood boards are utilised at all levels of fashion photography. Pinterest is a great way to go & you can share your moodboard with your photographer, art director (if using) & stylist who you may wish to receive input from too. Or simply copy & paste images into a document or photograph images from books/magazines using your phone & input into the document also. Digital documents are best for ease of sharing with your team.

3.     Colour Palette 

A bit like the property show ‘location. location, location’. If I had a fashion photography show it would be called ‘colour palette, colour palette, colour palette’. The best place to start is with the pieces which are the central aspect of a commercial shoot & build out the colour palette for the images from there. Pay attention to the background (walls/grass/meadows/cityscape), location, Chairs/props, the models skin tone, hair & eye colour, accessories, boots/shoes, hair pieces & anything else you’d like to appear in your images. The colours can either beautifully clash, be purposely busy &/or match in tones. It’s important to plan this so that the shot looks carefully crafted & conveys the message you’re going for.

4.     Create a brief 

My top three questions for my clients are: What the conceptualisation for the range initially? Who is your audience who would wear your range? What top three adjectives would you use to describe this range? The answers to these questions will demonstrate the concept and story of your range & it’s crucial to communicate this is the whole team involved on the shoot. Your brief gives you a great opportunity to cover all aspects of your shoot such as logistics, location, aesthetics, props & equipment.  AND of course the team needed to make your vision happen - photographer, stylist, make-up/hair artist & of course model/s.

5.     Location 

With your colour palette, brand/range stories & audience in mind it’s time to arrange a location for the shoot. There are many websites dedicated to shoot locations whether that’s outside, in a house/warehouse or studio. Your photographer, art director or stylist may also have some ideas about great locations or will be able to prepare some options for you. In an ideal world you will also have scouted the locations & taken some test shots to ensure they will deliver the right shots. It’s wise to think about lighting on location too & where the light will fall if doing an outside shoot.

6.     Gather your team

Now, you need to gather your team. Hosting a model call is the perfect way to cast models, it gives you an opportunity to see them in your clothes & also gauge how willing & natural they are in poses that you’d like. It’s a big plus point to have happy ‘can do’ personalities on set. Meeting your photographer & stylist is key to share ideas & create a team all positive in achieving the looks which you want for your brand. Ensure you have make up/hair artists with right skill level to bring your vision into a reality. Discuss & agree all pricing upfront with your team & to ensure smooth running on the day & afterwards. Choose people who you resonate with & share your passion.

7.     Scheduling

Plan your looks well in advance. Each look needs it’s own card detailing every aspect of the look from the garments to accessories to hair & make up detail. Ensure you prepare a shot list to ensure you come away with the shots you need detailing outfits & crops for images. Think about the shots you’d like with models together & singularly. Whether you’d like any movement ie walking/dancing/laughing. A visual representation of model poses on the moodboard is great to have on shoot day. Ensure you leave enough time for each look to be shot & experimentation to be explored especially for editorial style shots. 

8.     List everything you need

Last but not least, you need to make sure you bring all of the equipment you are going to need for your shoot. After all, the last thing you want is for things to fall behind because you forgot something you needed. It is also a good idea to put together a call sheet with all of the important information & timings for the day for everyone involved to reference. 

So, 8 steps which will help you immensely whilst preparing for your upcoming fashion shoots. What’s the biggest point for you to bear in mind? What did you learn here that you haven’t thought of already? Feel free to share with your designer buddies to help their shoots run ever more smoothly :) Let me know if you’ve got any other useful tips which you’ve used to get your shoots running to a ’T’.