When dealing with new models…
November 9, 2012
Are you open and honest with them? Are they 100% clear as to what your asking them?
A problem found (most often) with newer or those who want to be models is what I call “Posing regret” As it turns out, I live and work out of Glamour states and as a result, I don’t tell a 5’6″ girl that I want to shoot “fashion” I am honest with them and tell them either, “We can shoot a fashion inspired theme” or “I don’t shoot fashion, I’m the glamour guy!” as a way of skirting around the fact they’re too short. Every once in a while, I will run across a young lady that wants to submit to a glamour magazine or website, then totally freak out and change her mind.
As I stated before, I got into model photography from shooting paysite girls. My first successful one wasDiddylicious. After that site I ran several other successful sites and provided technical/lighting support on sites like TiffanyTeen.com (funny fact? I owned the domain for about six months before selling it to him!) Because I stated this in my blog profile, from time to time I get young ladies who want to do their own site, but more on that later.
Posing regret is where the wannabe model is so excited to be “modeling” that she is open to shooting anything. She’s seen Maxim, Playboy and the likes and wants to be in those magazines. She decides to come in and shoot it all, most times it’s her idea to do it, then gets home and decides to find religion again. At that point because they are “her” photos (shes the wannabe so in her mind because they are photos of her, she owns them) that she wants down because she’s changed her mind. One of the reasons I tell photographers they need to charge all the time is for situations like these. If the client is a paying client, on their paperwork there is a spot for them to check off if you can use the images for promotion, business or self. If they check the no box and they decide they don’t want you to, your stuck. If it’s a free shoot and they don’t want you to, that’s when it becomes murky as your time is worth something.
The way I handle posing regret is simple; if it’s a paying client, I don’t do anything with the photos. I provide her the agreed upon images and move on. If it was a free shoot because the wannabe showed promise, then I evaluate the situation. If there was a lot of work into it, I will let the wannabe know that I won’t link her and change her name, but I can’t be out the time and money of the shoot. Usually in that situation, the wannabe says my favorite thing “I am underage” which is why it’s important to cover yourself.
The young lady that inspired this post, had decided she wanted to do a paysite. So I found a webmaster and went to work. The webmaster and her decided what she was going to shoot. Once the site was up and live, she decided that she didn’t want to do it anymore. To her credit she didn’t play the “I’m underaged” thing, but she did claim to have a mental breakdown. I worked with the webmaster (he fought me tooth and nail) to get it down because I felt bad for her and I did have a connection with her. I recently saw her on fb and chose to friend request her. She wrote me something along the lines of not forgiving me until hell freezes over. I was dumbfounded! I worked my tail off to get her site down as well as paid money out of pocket and this is what she says to me? I wrote her a nice email explaining all that went down, the facts, not what she now believes to be facts. And I questioned; if she was so scarred by the shoot she had with me, why does she have far worse photos in her book today?
When dealing with the inexperienced, you would be remiss to let them know EVERYTHING that happens before, during and after a shoot. Save yourself some time and only deal with the serious. Make them work for your shoot so you know you’re not wasting your time!