I love lifestyle photoshoots! I get to work with other creatives and see my vision come to life with a model and interesting setting. With the rise of style bloggers and social media platforms, lifestyle images (pictures showing a product being used in "real" life settings) seem to be everywhere. And for good reason; they're relatable and tell great stories when done well. I've learned a few tricks of the trade in my journey as an indie fashion designer that have helped me produce great images in my lifestyle photoshoots. Here goes:
#1 Set your budget - Working with friends, bartering or even DIY-ing it can help you save on costs. There's no magic number; make sure it works for you. If in doubt, ask around for cost estimates.
#2 Choose a mood/story for the shoot - Decide what type of vibe you want the images to have. Are you going for something warm and playful or cool and brooding? 80s inspired? I like to pull inspiration pictures from Pinterest or a google search to create a visual summary of my desired mood for the shoot.
#3 Assemble a team - I usually work with a photographer (my husband!), model, assistant, make-up artist and sometimes a videographer. I try to reach out at least 2-3 weeks ahead of time to ensure I can get on their schedule. You don't need an army of people to have successful shoot; just some creativity and clear roles.
#4 Plan, plan, plan - Secure a location for your shoot. Consider the following: Where will the model do their make-up and change outfits? What's the back-up plan for bad weather? I used to wait until the last minute to get accessories that reflected my inspiration and it always caused me a lot of unnecessary stress on the day of (and the day before) the shoot. Deciding on and securing the full look ahead of time can make things a lot easier on the day of the shoot and give a better result. Also consider how you plan to use the photos images. Do you need wider angles for your website? Whatever you decide, communicate with your team so everyone can be onboard and prepared.
#5 Set the atmosphere - On the day of the shoot, you have a lot of influence on the "mood" thermostat. Have fun and keep it positive; everyone tends to do their best work when they are enjoying themselves. I try to let my team know I appreciate them being there. Also, food and music go a long way!
#6 Leverage your team - I always get better ideas and perspectives when join brainpower with other creatives. Stay open and get input from others to get stronger images.
#7 Be flexible - When you shoot images, there are always a number of factors that are beyond your control. The sun is changing position, something distracting is happening in the background, you name it. On our last shoot, we planned to shoot by a pool, but the space had a beautiful garden as well. We adjusted our plan to shoot in the garden in addition to the pool and got some of our best shots.
I could say so much more on this topic, but take care of those seven areas for your next lifestyle photoshoot and you'll be well on your way. Above all, have a plan, leverage the power of others and have fun. Check out some behind the scenes shots from our last shoot here. Do you shoot a lot of lifestyle photo shoots? What are your favorite tricks of the trade?