Photoshoots and the photographer

I was tasked to orient the new members at our photography group on conducting photoshoots. As I prepared the materials for the talk, the topic slowly ventured into protocols and ethics, some basic do's and don'ts during the activity.

I have come across written rules on photoshoot ethics laid down by other photography groups for the benefit of their members, our group though didn't have one, but we do subscribe on to unwritten rules particularly on how we interface with  our models/subjects, co-shooters and crew.

In photoshoots, great responsibility lies within the photographer not just in taking good pictures but also that photoshoots are done right.

Here are some of the reminders which I had written down for the talk:

1. Iron out everything (logistics, compensation, accommodation, shoot concept etc) before the actual shoot.

2. As much as possible have a go-see or a look through of the model before the shoot, study or analyze her best angles and features. Let her look over your pegs.

3. In daring or risque shoots, the model must have prior knowledge of the theme before  going into actual photoshoot. Do not get underage models, if needed secure permission from parents, guardians or relatives. Agree upon a set of protocol during this kind of shoot, it must never degenerate into a free-for-all affair. 

* In any kind of photoshoot it is recommended to seek permission/consent from parents/guardians, most specially if you are handling young models, guardians may also refer to their managers or head of their modeling group (if ever the model has one.)

4. If you are a photography club or a regular photoshoot group agree upon a set of protocols or ethics which will govern the behavior of the shooters.

5. Never underestimate the relevance of  conducting a background check on models, make-up artists, co-photographers, crew etc.

6. For those shooting on location, ask permission/coordinate from owners/caretakers of these locales.

7. Scout the shooting location, Keep an eye for details like permits/fees, restrictions, safety and security concerns.

8. Its okay to be practical but when it comes to the crew’s comfort and convenience perhaps you have to spend more. (food, transport etc.)
 * As much as possible do not allow your model   to multitask or be heavily involved in tasks   or chores she/he has nothing to do with
 * Take care of your model as much as you take care of your camera 

9. Photoshoot is everything about respect, earning trust and goodwill. 

10. Respect personal boundaries. Keep everything professional. Remember that any misconduct will have an impact to the photography community as well.
      *Never flirt, take  undue advantage or solicit special favors




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