Forums > General Industry > How successful are TFP shoots?

Photographer

London Fog

Posts: 6770

London, England, United Kingdom

Share your experiences, good, bad, amazing, whatever! I'd really like to know just how successful these shoots are, especially when an MUA and studio time etc is involved?

Go...!

Dec 11 12 11:06 am Link

Photographer

Shot By Adam

Posts: 5936

Las Vegas, Nevada, US

London Fog wrote:
Share your experiences, good, bad, amazing, whatever! I'd really like to know just how successful these shoots are, especially when an MUA and studio time etc is involved?

Go...!

I put a lot of work into my TFP shoots. Personally, I don't like to shoot just for the sake of shooting, I like to put a lot of effort into my shoots whether they are for clients or for TFP shoots...doesn't matter. While it's true that the longer you shoot, the more good, bad, indifferent types of experiences you will have, I'm happy to say that the majority of my TFP shoots have been outstanding. Much of the results of those labors have gotten me published in magazines around the world, have gotten me on lectures circuits speaking on photography, and have gotten me more paid assignments than I can count.

I'm very selective on how I do my TFP shoots but when I do them, I make them very much worth it for all involved.

Dec 11 12 11:19 am Link

Photographer

Jhono Bashian

Posts: 2432

Cleveland, Ohio, US

their great if the talent shows up!

Dec 11 12 11:26 am Link

Model

a raw muse

Posts: 3196

Amundsen-Scott - permanent station of the US, Unclaimed Sector, Antarctica

A lot of work in my portfolio now is from TF/barter shoots.

I've had success provided all parties are in agreement over priority of the shoot (i.e. if a paid job comes up, we are both fine with the other asking to reschedule, or whether it is the same priority as a paid job, etc).

I find that scheduling paid work in advance and then scheduling TF shoots a week-a few days in advance works best for me.

Dec 11 12 11:41 am Link

Photographer

Abbitt Photography

Posts: 11720

Oakland Acres, Iowa, US

Jhono Bashian wrote:
their great if the talent shows up!

+1.

Dec 11 12 11:48 am Link

Photographer

JLC Images

Posts: 11559

Phillipsburg, New Jersey, US

I'm not sure what your definition of successful is.  This is a hobby for me and I only do TFP.  I have shot a lot of models and have acquired a ton of great images, good friends and some great stories.  For me they have been incredibly successful.

Dec 11 12 11:51 am Link

Model

angel emily

Posts: 1020

Boston, Massachusetts, US

They've always been successful, in that I've always shown up, they've always shown up, and we've always shot and I've always had the pictures returned to me on a timely basis.

The key is good communication and planning, making sure all expectations are discussed and agreed upon before shooting.

I've been happier with some images more than others.  Sometimes it was me, sometimes it was them.  Some of the images I've hated the most were the photographer's favorites, and vice-versa.

I've never had any complaints, and I have no-one to complain of.

Dec 11 12 11:51 am Link

Photographer

Ken Marcus Studios

Posts: 8490

Los Angeles, California, US

Virtually every shoot I've done in the last 15 years has been for trade. I do at least 70-100 TF shoots per year.

I'm a firm believer in doing TF

Most models cannot afford my prices and I don't like having to pay for talent.

Works out really well in my experience

KM

Dec 11 12 11:54 am Link

Photographer

Woven Thought

Posts: 329

Petersburg, Virginia, US

I haven't invested money in TF shoots, only my time and THAT only sparingly as I haven't set up an entire day for TF, I add it to a day of paid shoots.  Going by that, very beneficial to me and the models.  Great experience!

Dec 11 12 11:55 am Link

Photographer

Drew Smith Photography

Posts: 5209

Nottingham, England, United Kingdom

All of the images in my portfolio are from TF shoots apart from one.

I too put quite  a lot of hard work in to them. The MM models I've worked with have all been absolutely fantastic and totally professional. Several of them I consider to be friends now and we stay in regular contact and will probably shoot again next year.

Dec 11 12 12:04 pm Link

Photographer

DAN CRUIKSHANK

Posts: 1786

Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

My entire portfolio has been built through TF. I like TF.

Dec 11 12 12:08 pm Link

Photographer

Leonard Gee Photography

Posts: 16406

Sacramento, California, US

London Fog wrote:
Share your experiences, good, bad, amazing, whatever!

Just the same as any other job or shoot. Other than the client and paycheck, what would be the difference?

Dec 11 12 12:32 pm Link

Model

IDiivil

Posts: 4110

Los Angeles, California, US

TFP is my lifeblood.

Dec 11 12 12:35 pm Link

Photographer

Cherrystone

Posts: 36698

Columbus, Ohio, US

IDiivil wrote:
TFP is my lifeblood.

Don't forget your next transfusion. smile

Dec 11 12 12:38 pm Link

Photographer

Photography by Sean

Posts: 145

Atlanta, Georgia, US

Jhono Bashian wrote:
their great if the talent shows up!

This.....
From my experience, TFP brings out the worst. But that's just me....

Dec 11 12 12:44 pm Link

Model

Melodye Joy

Posts: 542

Rancho Cucamonga, California, US

London Fog wrote:
Share your experiences, good, bad, amazing, whatever! I'd really like to know just how successful these shoots are, especially when an MUA and studio time etc is involved?

Go...!

Well, I can say that I have had four TFP projects published in the years I have done TFP work. ANd that's all well and good!

However, in some TFP work, I have come across a lack in judgment (or memory?) concerning location, limits, demands, and editing choice.

It depends on WHO you work with, not always WHAT form in which you work (TFP or paid).

Dec 11 12 12:55 pm Link

Model

IDiivil

Posts: 4110

Los Angeles, California, US

Small Fruit Pits wrote:

Don't forget your next transfusion. smile

We're a match, baby!

Gimme dat cherry juice hurrrrrrr.

Dec 11 12 12:58 pm Link

Photographer

Starlite Studios LLC

Posts: 4

Denver, Colorado, US

For me I stopped doing much TFP. It seems half the models did not show up
and many were so new to modeling that I spent a lot of time posing and
trying to keep them in the light. Not that it was all bad, some were very good
to work with and in my early years helped to fill a port.
With my studio time being important for the most part I will hire a model
for a flat one time payment for any personal work I need to do. I have found
that I get better results working with a more pro model.
As they say you get what you pay for sometimes!
And when I can not afford the modeling fees I shoot pets and only have
to give up a few milk bones.

Dec 11 12 01:05 pm Link

Photographer

PDF IMAGES PHOTOGRAPHY

Posts: 4603

Jacksonville, Florida, US

I'd give my TF shoots an 80% rating as great, 18% good/OK, and 2% never again !

Dec 11 12 01:08 pm Link

Model

Laura UnBound

Posts: 27371

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

They're as successful as all the parties involved want them to be.

I've worked with dozens of other people who wanted it to work out as much as I did, and we made awesome stuff.

I can count on half a hand the number of TF shoots that sucked.

Dec 11 12 01:08 pm Link

Photographer

r T p

Posts: 3077

Los Angeles, California, US

London Fog wrote:
How successful are TFP shoots?


t
hey're always successful ...other than when they're not

they are as successful as all involved want them to be

Dec 11 12 01:08 pm Link

Photographer

Optix

Posts: 225

Boston, Massachusetts, US

Jhono Bashian wrote:
their great if the talent shows up!

+1

Expectations are (and should be) low on all sides.

These are creativity workshops without commercial or monetary interests. No one should be thinking of making money, unless they don't expect to reap the artistic rewards,

BUT...

If one participant plans to make money, then all should.

Translation: Don't plan TFP, if you have selfish interests, and could care less about what others bring to the table.

Not all artists with bad reputations amongst photographer or model circles are flakes.

Divas and greedy bastards (i.e., "help me build my port") are good examples of people that grind an enthusiastic session into a halt.

Dec 11 12 01:09 pm Link

Photographer

Bravo Magic Images

Posts: 765

Temple City, California, US

TFP can be Tragic and it can also be Fantastic. It all depends on both parties involved.

Dec 11 12 01:11 pm Link

Photographer

Vector 38

Posts: 8296

Austin, Texas, US

JLC Images wrote:
not sure what your definition of successful is.

+1

there are multiple definitions presented in the [too] many "paid vs. tf*" arguments presented here on the Boards ...

Dec 11 12 01:11 pm Link

Photographer

Tregore Imaging

Posts: 2

Boston, Massachusetts, US

Now we know why this is considered a "free site."

Dec 11 12 02:26 pm Link

Photographer

hs photography

Posts: 468

Houston, Texas, US

Every image in my portfolio is the result of a TFCD shoot.  But there at least twice as many "no shows" and don't even get me started on the "no response is a response" ones.  All in all, it has been very good for me.

Dec 11 12 02:32 pm Link

Model

Paige Morgan

Posts: 4058

New York, New York, US

I choose my TFP collaborators with care, and have had excellent results.

Trades to update book are necessary for most of us, its just a matter of choosing the right folks to trade with smile

Dec 11 12 05:06 pm Link

Model

Paige Morgan

Posts: 4058

New York, New York, US

Double post monster.

Dec 11 12 05:06 pm Link

Photographer

ontherocks

Posts: 22603

Salem, Oregon, US

they're great when the model shows up. some report flake rates as high as 50%-80%.

Dec 11 12 05:08 pm Link

Photographer

AJ_In_Atlanta

Posts: 12825

Atlanta, Georgia, US

About everything in my portfolio is a trade or agency test shoot.

Dec 11 12 05:09 pm Link

Photographer

SPierce Photography

Posts: 19789

Amherst, Massachusetts, US

In all honesty, my TFP shoots are always the better. For some strange reason when i'm paying someone, the photos don't turn out very well. Even with well known, professional models. TFPs are perfect for me- no complaints!

I have never had a problem with a no call no show, and the only people that have cancelled have been people I expected it from.

Dec 11 12 05:11 pm Link

Photographer

Critical Eye Studios

Posts: 132

Washington, District of Columbia, US

Portfolio All Trade.....

Dec 11 12 09:23 pm Link

Model

brianne

Posts: 281

OTTSVILLE, Pennsylvania, US

Most of my shoots have been TF.
I can't really say anything else really besides that, since they all went well and I've been happy with my images.

Dec 11 12 10:01 pm Link

Photographer

Natural Means

Posts: 596

Sydney, New South Wales, Australia

Very useful. Its all I've ever shot. Prob all i ever Will.

Ironically the shoots with MUA etc been less good. I think perhaps expectations were higher and a little less rapport/synergy with third person there. But im aimed squarely at the enthusiast, curious and hobbies class.

TFP  ROCKS.

Dec 11 12 10:57 pm Link

Photographer

DG at studio47

Posts: 2365

East Ridge, Tennessee, US

DAN CRUIKSHANK wrote:
My entire portfolio has been built through TF. I like TF.

ditto.

Dec 11 12 11:04 pm Link

Photographer

Aaron Lewis Photography

Posts: 5083

Catskill, New York, US

The level if success is relative to what you expect from the shoot.

If you expect a few usable images from each TF shoot and you're getting them then yes, it's successful.

If you expect to get published and you don't then no it's not successful

Dec 12 12 05:04 am Link

Photographer

B R U N E S C I

Posts: 25319

Bath, England, United Kingdom

I've had a few disappointing experiences but only a couple that resulted in no usable images.

As to whether the rest of them were successful... my entire portfolio was shot on a trade basis, either with individual models or via agency tests.

In the interest of full disclosure though, I should mention that on one occasion I did pay $$$ for a location! The rest of the shoot was still on a trade basis though.




Just my $0.02

Ciao
Stefano

www.stefanobrunesci.com

Dec 12 12 05:08 am Link

Photographer

name removed3

Posts: 264

Boston, Massachusetts, US

TF shoots go well if talent shows up

Dec 12 12 05:17 am Link

Photographer

jkcphotography

Posts: 50

Saint Louis, Missouri, US

TF is good when it is good and when it is bad...

I have had some great shots come from TF and have made some friends. I do think that most of my better work comes from paid work.

Flakes are a way of life in most things these days. the llamas worth shooting are the ones who don't flake and show up wanting to make art.

that said I want to do more TF as I am trying to get the pin up genre worked out.

so any llamas that want to work with me as I work on this and will TF I would welcome....

my 2 cents

Dec 12 12 05:17 am Link

Photographer

L Bass

Posts: 957

Nacogdoches, Texas, US

Jhono Bashian wrote:
their great if the talent shows up!

The 'talent' will be here whether the model shows up or not wink

Dec 12 12 05:29 am Link