Tip Tuesday: Our Photoshoot Process
Before getting started with the actual shooting, there are a few processes we go through to help everything run a little smoother. Scheduling out our shoots is first and foremost when planning to shoot; if you don’t know what you’re supposed to be shooting… you get it. We’ve been scheduling content a month in advance which gives us time to brainstorm, concept, prep, and execute with plenty of time to modify if need be.
The next step for us is one of the more important aspects of how we produce our content and that is collecting moods, inspiration, vibes and all the feels. Moodboarding is how we pull together all of our resources and looks that we want to achieve. Once we’ve got all of our moods together, we plan out what gear we’ll need to produce the similar undertones to the vibes we like. We’ll ask ourselves what gear we need, what locations we’ll shoot in, and how we can pull from our inspiration while making the shots our own.
As far as gear goes, we use DSLR’s most of the time, more specifically the Canon 5DS or the Canon 1DX Mark II. Lenses? All about that 100 mm. It helps us tighten up our shots while offering up the detail and precision we like. You’ll also catch us using a 50mm and a 16/35mm from time to time. As far as lighting goes, we always turn to Paul C Buff for our strobes. When we’re not using a DSLR, we’re snapping shots on an iPhone 6 s and using apps like VSCO, Lens Distortions, and Mextures for editing.
On to shooting. It’s all about location for us. And once you find the right location, finding the right spot in that location. We do a lot of shooting around our space, so we’ve got the location down, but we spend the a good chunk of our time shooting moving from spot to spot. One of the biggest contributing factors is where our light comes from. We try to go for natural light as much as possible, but we often have to rely on our strobes because Florida. Our office also has a tendency to have warmer hues so that’s something we have to keep in mind. We like shooting up close, but we have to be weary of our shots looking similar, so we have to experiment with different angles like over the shoulder, over head, as well as adding depth to our shots. We also overshoot. Even if we think we got it, we shoot more just to give ourselves some extra options. Lastly, when we’re trying to nail down a shot, we tend to change one element at a time until we get it right, so first we’ll lock in our lighting, then worry about the lens, and then take the shot from multiple angles.
For post, we use Lightroom. We use the VSCO Canon presets when we first start editing, but we only use them as a starting point. We use them as a general template and edit further from there to avoid our shots looking like we threw an Instagram filter over them. We also have our own presets, some based off of VSCO presets, and some of them from scratch. But regardless, just know that there is no preset that works for everything, so you’ll have to experiment a lot. We like our images with a bit higher contrasts and a tasteful touch of clarity and grain; this gives our shots that filmy nostalgic look that we all love. And that’s just about it.