Forums > Critique > Models, what strengths do you bring to a shoot

Photographer

Model with Michael

Posts: 391

Frederick, Maryland, US

I will look through your portfolio and let you know your greatest strengths. I'm looking for what commercial value you bring to a shoot. If you like, I will also include where you have room for improvement.

So who am I:
I'm a commercial and fine art photographer, with 40 years experience. My expertise lies in posing the female form to bring out her best features. I teach professional photographers and models nationally and internationally. Most of the models in my portfolio had never modeled before working with me.

NOTE: I will keep responding, but my time is limited, so please be patient.

Aug 24 13 09:32 am Link

Model

Diana Mathew

Posts: 6

NORTH BRUNSWICK, New Jersey, US

Would you be able to look through mine?

Aug 24 13 09:40 am Link

Model

Axioma

Posts: 6793

Gent, East Flanders, Belgium

oooh, me plz! and yes, feel free to include where my room for improvement is, that'd be good.

Aug 24 13 09:41 am Link

Model

Danielle Reid

Posts: 4383

Little Rock, Arkansas, US

I'd like to know, however I'm desperately waiting for my new pics to come in. But please tell me how you feel about my port so far.

Aug 24 13 09:46 am Link

Model

Lanika Thomas

Posts: 24

Salinas, California, US

Yes, please! smile

Aug 24 13 09:57 am Link

Model

Phane

Posts: 2048

Rockville, Maryland, US

do tell

Aug 24 13 11:16 am Link

Model

W I L L O W

Posts: 343

Portland, Oregon, US

Please smile

Aug 24 13 11:32 am Link

Model

Azia Rose

Posts: 228

Portland, Oregon, US

I would love to know!!

Aug 24 13 11:58 am Link

Photographer

Model with Michael

Posts: 391

Frederick, Maryland, US

Diana Mathew wrote:
Would you be able to look through mine?

Hi Diana,

You have a good look, an exotic face and lots of potential. It's unfortunate that you have been working as a model for a few years and have not worked with someone more knowledgeable and creative, who could highlight your assets better.

Photographers and models need to work as a team. If the photographer is expecting you to come up with the pose and they just record it, you have the wrong photographer. The photographer is the one looking into the camera and sees the final composition, so the photographer must direct the model to create an interesting image. The model needs to be very comfortable with the photographer or get another photographer to make it work for the two of them.

Lots of success,
Michael

Aug 24 13 12:06 pm Link

Model

E L I N

Posts: 199

Montreal, Quebec, Canada

I'm in! Would like to know what I could improve too smile

Aug 24 13 12:07 pm Link

Model

anna gabriel

Posts: 120

Lexington, Kentucky, US

Just got new photos added. ready to hear it smile

Aug 24 13 12:11 pm Link

Model

anna gabriel

Posts: 120

Lexington, Kentucky, US

Just got new photos added. ready to hear it smile

Aug 24 13 12:12 pm Link

Photographer

Model with Michael

Posts: 391

Frederick, Maryland, US

Axioma wrote:
oooh, me plz! and yes, feel free to include where my room for improvement is, that'd be good.

Hi Axioma,

You have the face, form and physical ability of a great model. You bring elegance and poise to the set coupled with a knockout face that pulls in an audience and thus sells. You have some excellent work in your port.

However, you also have some images that take your port down. Models will have a tendency to include work in their port from a friend or well known photographer, even when it does not show them at their best. Reading your prior posts, you do not seem to be fully aware of your own abilities and are therefore relying on other people to advise you. Creativity can only come from within. You must fully believe in yourself and always convey that positive image.

Keep pushing yourself. I would suggest you keep learning more about posing and what works for you. Work with photographers whose portfolio shows images that you are looking for. The exception, of course, is when the job pays very well. However, unless you like those images, do not include them in your port.

Much continued success. You are capable of extraordinary work. Don't hold yourself back with too much modesty.
Michael

Aug 24 13 12:26 pm Link

Photographer

Model with Michael

Posts: 391

Frederick, Maryland, US

Danielle Reid wrote:
I'd like to know, however I'm desperately waiting for my new pics to come in. But please tell me how you feel about my port so far.

Hi Danielle,

I have to give you credit for a lot of persistence. You have a very good face and you are obviously working hard at modeling. Your port has come a long way from when you started.

But there is still a lot of room for improvement. Today with digital cameras and software, it takes very little ability to record an image. That is why there are so many wannabe photographers out there. They have the money to buy expensive equipment, but not the creativity and knowledge to make commercially viable images. They just shoot and shoot, hoping to get something.

To improve your portfolio, pick photographers, not simply because they show interest in you, but rather because they make images you want to do. Unskilled photographers are hoping you are going to go into a pose for them to record. Working with less skilled photographers is fine if they are paying you.

Skilled and creative photographers will direct you to make the composition they envision before they even push the button. It takes two, the model and photographer, to make a fine image. Neither can do it alone, no matter their abilities. So just keep at it. You are moving up.

Much success,
Michael

Aug 24 13 12:50 pm Link

Model

Layla_B

Posts: 209

Eindhoven, Noord-Brabant, Netherlands

Hi Michael! Will you take a look at my port too please?
Great comments on the portfolios you've looked at so far in this topic smile

Aug 24 13 01:09 pm Link

Model

Anna Vanston

Posts: 36

Austin, Texas, US

What detailed responses! I would love a good ole fashioned critique! After I get my laptop back from being fixed I'm planning on switching out about 2-3 of the photos for new ones from shoots, but might as well take this opportunity while you're offering! If you wish to advise which ones to replace, I would love to hear that as well smile thank you for your time and effort!

Aug 24 13 01:10 pm Link

Model

Sarah_

Posts: 1487

Denver, Colorado, US

Let's see smile

Aug 24 13 01:37 pm Link

Photographer

Model with Michael

Posts: 391

Frederick, Maryland, US

Lanika Thomas wrote:
Yes, please! smile

Hi Lanika,

I see really excellent potential in your modeling. While you don't have the height for runway, you have the perfect face and form for photographic modeling. Height in modeling is completely overstated. Approximately less than 1% of professional models in the USA are used for runway. But models of any height can be used for photography, since height does not show. Because of distances involved in photographing a model, it's actually easier for a photographer to photograph a short model than a tall model, especially in the studio.

You need to learn how to pick out good photographers, judging them by the quality of their images only. You should expect the photographer to direct you in your pose. If they are unable to, because they are relying totally on the model to strike the pose, get a more skilled photographer.

Your portfolio has average images with nothing that really stands out for its creative flair. They are all on the same basic level. Continuing to use his level of photographer will keep you at the same level. You are obviously working hard to create images, but it's the association between the photographer and the model working together that makes a good image. No photographer nor model can do it by themselves.

When I hire a model, I look at her face, her form and her ability to pose. Your images do not show off any three of these at a professional level. Keep working on being more expressive in your images and playing toward the camera with photographers that can help you bring this out.

Much success,
Michael

Aug 24 13 06:25 pm Link

Model

Amadea T

Posts: 3577

Columbus, Ohio, US

Always room for improvement here..

Regardez: still practicing feeling my face,  therefore my headshots are not too excitng yet..

Aug 24 13 06:45 pm Link

Model

Holly Summers

Posts: 172

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, US

i would love to hear your thoughts!

Aug 24 13 06:52 pm Link

Model

C a m i l a

Posts: 119

Houston, Texas, US

Me too smile

Aug 24 13 07:14 pm Link

Photographer

Model with Michael

Posts: 391

Frederick, Maryland, US

Phane wrote:
do tell

Hi Phane,

You have excellent potential in your modeling and your height is an asset if you wanted to pursue runway and agencies. You seem to bring a willingness to work and try new things, but it's being obscured by the quality of your images.

Learn how to pick out creative photographers by studying how they use light and how they pose models. Are they consistently good throughout their portfolio, or do they only have a few outstanding images.

When working with a skilled photographer, you should expect the photographer to direct you in your pose. Unfortunately many professional photographers have little knowledge in how best to pose the model to bring out her features. They assume the models know how, but it is only the photographer who sees the composition in the camera's viewfinder and thus must finish out a model's pose through directions. Look for photographers who have an understanding of light and composition.

The port you show is very average and is not likely to bring you much paid work. Working with a photographer, who just points and shoots will not advance your work. I see you working hard at modeling, but I can not see how you will move up unless you find more creative and knowledgeable photographers.

Fine images are the direct result of the model and photographer working together to create, not either one working alone.

The models I hire need to have the face and form, but they also need to show that they have prior creative experience. It's a fiercely competitive field, so you need to demonstrate skills in posing and expressing emotion. Work with photographers you can assist you with expressions that match your pose, so you don't end up staring blankly into the camera.

Much success,
Michael

Aug 24 13 07:23 pm Link

Model

Nicki Micki

Posts: 267

Charleston, South Carolina, US

Please tell me

Aug 24 13 07:42 pm Link

Model

Jahanara

Posts: 124

Washington, District of Columbia, US

I'm curious smile

Aug 24 13 07:45 pm Link

Model

Jennifer Millikan Keene

Posts: 75

Asheboro, North Carolina, US

Would love to hear it brings it on.

Aug 24 13 08:10 pm Link

Model

C A T H Y

Posts: 5464

Anaheim, California, US

I would love to know smile

Aug 24 13 09:01 pm Link

Model

MissLaurelle

Posts: 3532

Montreal, Quebec, Canada

love to know smile

Aug 24 13 09:03 pm Link

Model

chasingKelly

Posts: 95

Stanton, California, US

Please do!

Aug 24 13 10:24 pm Link

Model

_eMMe_

Posts: 842

Florence, Toscana, Italy

Let's play.

Aug 25 13 11:40 am Link

Model

Julia Francesca

Posts: 2365

Maumee, Ohio, US

Me please, I know there are def areas I could work on smile

Aug 25 13 12:50 pm Link

Photographer

Model with Michael

Posts: 391

Frederick, Maryland, US

W I L L O W wrote:
Please smile

Hi Willow,

You have a great form and an unusual, striking face for a shoot. Your ability to do hair, makeup and styling is a big plus for many photographers. You seem to have incredible flexibility and can pull off some sensational poses.

Your photographers are relying too much on you presenting yourself perfectly in a pose and the right expression. Instead they should direct your pose and expression, because only they, not you, can see in the camera to create the final composition. Unfortunately this creative ability is rare in photographers, except at the highest level of the profession.

The only difference between an actress and a model is that the actress can use words to convey her thoughts. The model must speak through her pose or body language and facial expression. Blank looks rarely if ever sell.

Your potential is extremely high and I wish you much success. Look for photographers that can help you develop further as a model, not just someone that others may speak highly of, but are not helping you improve. I have found it can help a model to work repeatedly with the same skilled photographer, your images will continue to improve as you two learn to work off one another. It is like two dancers practicing their art.

Much success to you,
Michael

Aug 26 13 10:44 pm Link

Photographer

Model with Michael

Posts: 391

Frederick, Maryland, US

Azia Rose wrote:
I would love to know!!

You have a sensational face and form, but you need to decide are you trying to be a model or an actress. Most of your port shows off an actress, not a model. If you are going to do both, I would recommend having two separate accounts.

Really a fantastic face structure! With a face like yours, you can create any expression and it will be believable. A face like yours has huge commercial potential and you are capable of selling any product you are hired for. But currently your port is in too many directions. The level of photography does not show your full range of ability and is holding you back.

At your age, you have maybe 3-5 years to make it to the highest levels. If you waste that time, it's past and can't be reclaimed.

I am not saying you should not have fun on a shoot. There is nothing better than a model with a sense of humor. But the images you choose to show in your portfolio should show off your capability as a high end model.

I would suggest studying more about posing and the expressions that compliment a particular pose. Seek out photographers who fully understand how to bring these two out, instead of using ones that simply record what you do.

It is always difficult for me, no matter how many years I've been doing it, to see a model with your capability wasted on unskilled photographers.

I wish you much success,
Michael

Aug 26 13 10:57 pm Link

Model

winking_wonder

Posts: 5637

New York, New York, US

Would love to know both strengths and where to improve!

Aug 26 13 11:06 pm Link

Model

Meng Ai

Posts: 16

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, US

Would you please be able to look through mine? smile

Aug 27 13 09:54 am Link

Model

BethanyKay

Posts: 139

West Jordan, Utah, US

You have wonderful work. I'd love to hear what you think I could bring to a shoot.

Aug 28 13 08:21 am Link

Model

Rachael R

Posts: 154

Denton, Texas, US

If you're not worn slap out yet... I'd love a critique.

I'd love, love, love to end up in the commercial/lifestyle world.... Haven't gotten the guts to seek agency help yet.  What'dya think???

Thanks in advance for your time!
Rachael

Aug 28 13 12:43 pm Link

Model

Tiffiney C

Posts: 570

Los Angeles, California, US

I'm interested. Thank you

Tiff
www.TiffineyC.com

Aug 28 13 12:53 pm Link

Model

LexAn

Posts: 41

Shanghai, Shanghai, China

Always want critiques. Although I know that my strength is creativity and being able to be someone a photog can bounce idea off of smile

Aug 28 13 10:59 pm Link

Model

JW Harvey

Posts: 25

New York, New York, US

I'd love for you to take a look smile

Aug 29 13 01:33 am Link

Model

HEATHER 19

Posts: 1156

Boston, Massachusetts, US

Great to know....

Aug 29 13 10:17 am Link