Forums > General Industry > Hotel room vs Studio

Photographer

Neil_photographer

Posts: 16

New York, New York, US

It seems cheaper to get a large natural lit hotel room rather than renting a studio (especially in downtown manhattan) for both castings and shooting.

Do you think the hotel would mind so many people coming in and out for castings?

Do the agencies care?

Jan 08 13 06:40 pm Link

Photographer

Vector One Photography

Posts: 2778

Fort Lauderdale, Florida, US

Yes a hotel would probably mind. They don't care what you do in the room but if you are running a casting with people in and out they probably would want you to rent a small conference room. Unless you're Playboy or the like and you rent a suite in a good hotel. And what do you mean "would an agency mind" ?  Are you asking if an agency would mind sending their models to a hotel room ?  If you've got a well known name and a suite..probably not.  If you are Joe Smoe, they are going to laugh at you.

Jan 08 13 06:45 pm Link

Photographer

EdwardKristopher

Posts: 3377

Tempe, Arizona, US

Vector One Photography wrote:
Yes a hotel would probably mind. They don't care what you do in the room but if you are running a casting with people in and out they probably would want you to rent a small conference room. Unless you're Playboy or the like and you rent a suite in a good hotel. And what do you mean "would an agency mind" ?  Are you asking if an agency would mind sending their models to a hotel room ?  If you've got a well known name and a suite..probably not.  If you are Joe Smoe, they are going to laugh at you.

+1

Jan 08 13 09:32 pm Link

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Photographer

GPS Studio Services

Posts: 36368

San Francisco, California, US

There are certainly reasons why you might want to shoot in a hotel rather than a studio.  It may be that the "look" you want is easier to create in a specific suite than a studio.   On the other hand, if you are asking if an agency would mind sending models to a hotel room because you don't want to pay for a studio or conference room, your budget will raise some red flags.

That having been said, we cast a feature film out of a hotel suite in Burbank back in '88.  Of course, the hotel had business suites that were frequently used just for that purpose.

I've also cast out of hotel rooms when I've been working on projects out of town.  We had plenty of agency models come in.

It is all on how you present it.  It will either be a problem or it will not.

Jan 08 13 09:53 pm Link

Photographer

afplcc

Posts: 6000

Fairfax, Virginia, US

First, rent a suite.  That, combined with good natural light and you've got decent shooting space.  Plus, it's usually easier for most models to find (hotels are supposed to be "on the grid").  It will have bathrooms and (a suite anyway) will often have a fridge or kitchenette so if you're spending your entire day doing casting calls you don't starve or get stuck with carryout.

Second, here's a thought to think of...lots of hotels (especially upscale or urban) will have security where someone will need a card key just to get the elevator to move.  I did a shoot last night where I needed to meet the model outside in the parking lot b/c she needed a card key to get in to the building I was in.

I've worked in some hotels where I did the equivalent of casting calls--3 or 4 consecutive shoots in one day.  At the Florida Mall Hotel, I once did 4 shoots in a row starting at 10am and ending at 11pm.  I think I left the room once the whole day.  But despite the best of instructions to the models, some will goof it up.  So I've had a Marriott in Toronto, a Hyatt in Houston, and a W in Chicago I think who had issues with a stream of young, attractive women showing up asking for me (but getting my name garbled).  I'm sure they all thought "escort service/call-girls".  Only one hotel has ever made an issue of this.  Most hotels are either oblivious or accepting of the situation.

Ed

Jan 09 13 04:29 am Link

Photographer

John Malloch Caldwell

Posts: 2563

Hastings, England, United Kingdom

I use hotels for castings and shoots. However, if the casting requires more that a few models I always rent a small conference room and pay a bit extra to have the models directed by the reception staff. As for shooting I rent a suite and have had only one problem and that was in the USA (San Francisco). I prefer Paris, Barcelona and Prague they are much more open and helpful.

Jan 09 13 04:52 am Link

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Photographer

Rays Fine Art

Posts: 6324

New York, New York, US

A hotel would probably mind your holding a casting call in a guest room.  That's why they rent function rooms.

Why aren't you using a rehearsal studio for casting calls?  They're convenient, cheap and capable of handling large (or small) numbers of strange people like us without getting upset.

Jan 09 13 10:15 am Link

Photographer

Raoul Isidro Images

Posts: 6289

Sydney, New South Wales, Australia

A nice hotel suite would be fine for a small "party", but casting calls will bring in the house detective.

The hotel suite might not be able to handle the required power for the lighting set up.
Most modern hotels have appliances tailor wired and fixed, and only allow a small capacity outlet for computers and phone chargers.

.

Jan 10 13 02:19 am Link

Photographer

TomFRohwer

Posts: 696

Hamburg, Hamburg, Germany

Neilhenegan wrote:
Do you think the hotel would mind so many people coming in and out for castings?

Hotels and hotel rooms are widely used for business meetings or job interviews. So why a hotel should mind? By the way: you also may rent a conference room for castings.

Jan 10 13 04:12 am Link

Photographer

Beautifully Soft Focus

Posts: 529

Peoria, Illinois, US

Tip: You need to call the hotel marketing director/manager, and get approval to shoot at the hotel. Found this out the hard way.  Hotels, particular the major chains do not a allow you to shoot any commercial photography the hotel including the room without expressed written permission of the hotel. They don't care that you rented a room or suite there sad  The concern has to do with logo, trademark, and brand infringement, and corporate image issues that they want to control. Of course this varies depending on the city and state too, e.g., in IL , TN,  and CA not a problem.  I shot at several 4 star hotels.  In TX a whole another story ... a simple fashion shoot for a designer's fall collection ... a big FAT NO! Really fracked-up my shooting plans for part of that trip. Headed to the streets and the beach ... saved the weekend. So my advise call ahead and get permission first wink

Be easy,

Alvin

Jan 10 13 05:00 am Link

Photographer

Don-Jones

Posts: 302

Memphis, Tennessee, US

There have been a few cases where I was in a bind and I've rented conference rooms.  Not much more than a room, you get he hours you want, and a lot more professional than having a meeting in a room with a bed.

Jan 10 13 10:23 pm Link