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How to Find Models and Create a Marketable Portfolio

I can’t emphasize the importance of confidence and setting expectations with your models when it comes to creating a successful portfolio for your photography business! It can feel so uncomfortable asking people to model for you. You feel like you’re asking them to do you a favor and because of this, you cave into the models’ requests for a shoot at high noon, ignore the fact that they showed up in a t-shirt and jean shorts, and just hope for the best. I’m here to tell you it DOESN’T have to feel uncomfortable. You CAN get models to wear amazing outfits and you WILL create an awesome portfolio that will attract the quality clients you’re looking for!

Set Expectations

Take control of the direction of your shoot by setting expectations with your models. Reach out to individuals/couples/families that have the specific look you’re going for in your brand. That way, your portfolio will be FULL of the type of clients you want to attract! Let them know that you’re reaching out specially to them because you feel they are the PERFECT fit for your brand! Not only is what you’re saying true, it makes your models feel special. Models end up feeling honored vs. feeling like they’re doing you a favor and that shift in perspective will go a LONG WAY in the session experience for you both!

Give Direction

Let them know the time of day and location of your model session and that you will provide a style guide so they know exactly what to wear. If you’re just starting out and don’t have a style guide, create a Pinterest board you can link them to. Easy peasy!

Inform your models that as a thank you, they will receive free images from your session.

Find Success!

By setting expectations for the session, you limit potential issues that cause stress, wasted time, and a poor portfolio. You’re asking people to model, but you’re informing them where, what time, and what to wear. Keep the ball in your court and nail your model sessions and your portfolio!


Join my Facebook Group for Photographers! Join this supportive community and learn how to stand out in your market!

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