Updated: Dec 20, 2018
After 10+ years in this business, it still amazes me how many "professional" models come to a photoshoot unprepared. Preparing for a shoot may seem like it does not require long-term preparation but if you want the business to take you seriously, then you must take your craft seriously.
Stud modeling is a relatively new genre, so there is very little information out there other than Model 101 Blogs for male models. These blogs are jam-packed with information on how to put together model kits that can benefit any stud model.
Follow these tips and shine at your next photo shoot.
First, let I say this, you will be fortunate if a photographer or brand gives you this much time to prepare, but if they do, then you have a chance to impress them with your prep game. Also, if modeling is your profession, then you should be doing these tips regularly.
1. Months before the photoshoot
Eat healthily and exercise regularly: With all the different regiments out there, I suggest finding one that makes you look and feel great.
Practice, Practice, Practice: Taking selfies is one thing but getting your best selfie face to transfer on photos when someone else is holding the camera is something different. Spend at least 5 minutes every day practicing your facial expressions and poses in front of a mirror, enlist a close friend to snap some photos of you. Find your best angles and practice them until they flow naturally.
Put the bottle down: Partying every weekend may sound fun, but the amount of sugar and calories in alcohol will lead to weight gain, bloat, and dehydration (which is terrible for the skin)
Whiten that grill: With a section in every pharmacy dedicated to teeth whitening, you have no excuse. Whiten those pearly whites and schedule a cleaning if you are due.
2. Weeks before the photoshoot
Business First: Request to see a Model Release Form or Contract. If you have any questions, have an attorney look it over. These forms are generally signed after the shoot which is the wrong time to read those fine prints.
Stick with what works: This is not the time to try any new grooming trends or skincare products. Stick with what has been working and stay hydrated.
The sun is not your friend: Avoid the sun weeks followup to your shoot. It will dry your skin, leave tan lines and may burn to leave discoloration.
What to wear: Modeling is always about YOU unless it's about the clothes at which point it's still about YOU. Remember you were selected to model for a reason which means they expect YOU to bring the product to life. If this is a photoshoot for a portfolio, I recommend staying away from wild prints, bright colors, heavy jewelry and keep the top dark/textured for headshots
Involve a family or friend: Ask a close friend or family member to accompany you to your shoot if safety is a concern or for support. Find out in advance if they will be allowed to be present during the actual shoot.
Catch those Zzzs: Get plenty of sleep. Restless eyes and bags are difficult to fix during editing.
3. Days before the photoshoot
Communicate: Contact your photographer for any last minute updates. Confirm all details like date, time, wardrobe, theme, etc
Watch what you eat: Stay away from greasy, fatty, salty foods. Continue to stay hydrated and avoid tobacco and heavy alcohol consumption.
Get your groomed: Get your hair cut, trimmed, styled and/or cleaned. Do not try anything new or crazy and no new hair dyes (a touch up is fine).
Mani-Pedi: Get pampered! Find a nail salon or do it yourself. Keep your fingernails and toenails trim and clean.
Facial Hair: Groom your facial hair and again, nothing too trendy unless the shoot calls for it.
Body Hair: "Manscaping" is a thing and it is very critical when preparing for a photo shoot. If you are naturally hairy, I recommend getting rid of it the best way without irritating the skin. Razor shaving and waxing on new areas may result in bumps so be aware.
Clear Skin and Make-up: Get a facial or do one yourself to help close your pores and give you a natural glow. If you have never worn makeup, I recommend seeing a makeup consultant (MAC and Sephora are great recommendations) find the right foundation and powder for your skin tone.
Model Kit: Put together a Model Kit
4. Day before the photoshoot
Exfoliate and Moisturize: Contact your photographer for any last minute updates. Confirm all details like date, time, wardrobe, theme, etc
NO ALCOHOL: Absolutely no alcohol the day/night before your photo shoot. This will leave you face and body bloated.
Leave no impressions: Any jewelry that may leave indentations on your skin should be removed.
Wash your mane: For those with oily hair, wash your hair the day before your shoot and wash excessively oily hair the day of.
Prepare wardrobe: Get your outfits together including shoes, and accessories. Iron what needs ironing and hang on hangers (Invest in garment bags)
Don't miss your shoot: Make sure all your communication devices are charged, and you have all vital point of contacts saved. Verify address and prepare transportation to and from your shoot.
Model Kit: Pack your Model Kit.
Get some rest!
5. Day of the photoshoot
Light workout: Go for a quick run/jog if you have a sunrise shoot, this helps bring life to the face. Do some resistance training to help define muscles.
Don't sweat it: Antiperspirant is your best friend. Shower and wear a clear antiperspirant, avoid heavy perfume/cologne especially if your shoot is outside for fear of bugs.
Stretch and Zen out: Stretch or incorporate some light yoga before your shoot. This will help relax and loosen the body for those great poses.
Don't get hyped: Say no to caffeine or energy drinks, too much energy during shoot makes it hard to capture the right shot.
Pack your bags and be on time: Make sure you have your entire wardrobe and model kit. Be on-time (Or early if outside and/or in remote areas).
Kill it: Go out there and enjoy your shoot because you know you prepared for it.