As a cosplayer and someone who likes to do a lot of photoshoots whether fashion or conceptual, I had a knack of organizing photoshoots left and right. I’ve experienced organizing small to big ones. Now, I am here to share some tips and well basically just how do it. Now remember, this works if you are doing a solo, big or small group photoshoots. It does not matter if it’s cosplay, fashion or concept related. Please do take note that all I am going to mention is based on my experience. Feel free to add and write them down on the comment section <3.
1. SET THE TIME AND DATE
Setting the date for me comes first. I make sure there is a PLAN A and PLAN B in setting the dates just in any case something fucks up PLAN A there is PLAN B. However, it is better to set just one sure date. This will work in your favor especially if you are booking a studio or a place to shoot. Having a one sure date means you can book in advance and when you booked it it’s hard to rebook. So make sure that you go with your first choice.
Please take note that if this is a group shoot, make sure EVERYONE or the majority is available for that certain date. The good thing about solo and small groups it’s easy to secure everyone’s attendance. Unlike in big groups, securing a date can be a hassle because trying to find a free time for everyone can be tedious. Trust me on that >.<
Now in setting the date, make sure there is enough time for everyone to prepare. Make sure that the date you or the whole group has chosen is A OKAY with everyone. From the models, to the photographers and to the assistants especially the venue. PREPARATION IS THE KEY FOLKS.
As for the time, make sure that the time of the shoot will be enough. Time that everyone gets a shot and was properly shot. Also BE ON TIME. As much as possible, PLEASE BE ON TIME.
I know most of us do this thing for free but it doesn’t hurt to be professionally be on time right? I mean we do get late time to time but please let’s all try to avoid it. Being on time means you can finish on time or earlier.
Let’s all try to learn the value of time management. It doesn’t hurt to learn. In the end it will benefit not just you but also those who are with you in the shoot. Understand?
2. FIND A VENUE
Finding a venue in Metro Manila can be really a hassle. Most places here is NO PHOTOGRAPHY allowed. At first, shooting at public parks seems fine but not all cosplay or concept shoots can work with a nature background.
Your venue will depend on what your cosplay, type of fashion or concept you are shooting. Please do take note that not all venues are for FREE. Please, if you want the best for your shoot spending on your venue is something you have to do. It’s only logical that you spare money on it. Out of town / hotel room shoots are done best in a group. Why? You can pitch in money.
My friends usually do this. Whenever we go out of town for some r&r we took the opportunity to shoot too and bring whatever will fit the place where we are going ^^b. We usually pitch in money too because that’s only right.
Again, I stress that to have the best photos, make sure your venue fit right to whatever you are shooting. Also, try maximizing the place! Especially if the place is grandiose and awesome. Get your money and effort’s worth.
3. SPICE UP! SET-UP! BRING PROPS!
Bringing props to your venue is not bad. In fact it’s better if you do. Spice your venue up! This works wonders if you are shooting in a hotel room, an empty room or in a studio. Please look at the photo to the right and I tell you that is an empty room (thanks to Romeo of Moonstruck for lending us that room), we just spiced it up by bringing props and look!
What props you can bring? Unused fabrics, anything your character would use or will fit his/her personality. Don’t rely on the place, how grand your costume is or how cool your weapon is. No.
Use your imagination and try to recreate your character’s environment. If the place already fits then no problem but bringing something won’t hurt either.
This is why I prefer empty rooms or hotel room shoots because I can go wild on the things I can bring over for the shoot. I can be more creative on making my venue fit my character or concept.
Another extra tip, make a list of the things you bought as props so that after the shoot you have everything accounted for.
Okay, you got the time, date, venue and props accounted. But here are some few things that some people forget or just simply ignores.
Having ETIQUETTE or PROFESSIONALISM.
For paid shoot it is normal that people remember this but for free shoots, some of us just turn a blind eye to it. In my honest opinion, WE SHOULD NOT FORGET THOSE TWO. How hard it is for someone to tell everyone if you are going to be late and how hard it is to be honest why you are going to be late? Also, is it hard to clean-up after you use a venue for your shoot? Saying that you don’t have time or in a hurry is poor and bullshit of an excuse. It is also right that when you are organizing a big shoot, it is also PROFESSIONALLY right to inform every each of the members about whatever is going on. Giving updates is not that hard right? JFC. I can write more about this but I hope you guys basically know what I mean right?
So there you have it! If you have some suggestion, please hit the comment section and feel free to say whatever just please be kind 🙂