Williamstown Model Shoot
Williamstown Model Shoot © Brian Young
What a day! The weather was divine. The members showed up and so did all of Williamstown! The good weather brought out people en masse and our original venue was flooded with humans, so a last minute change in venue was required.
Thankfully, our members have better knowledge of Williamstown than I do, David Male directed me to a hidden spot behind Seaworks and it was decided we'd move to there, abandoning our initial venue, Commonwealth Reserve.
I remained for a short time to redirect late-comers while our members explored our new location and found areas they'd like to use for the shoot. Our new location had plenty to offer. At around 3pm we started to work with our location, checking the settings we might require once the models arrived.
The models were due to arrive at 3:30 and they came on time. Big thanks to Gilvertt who sourced our model Hannah at the last minute. She agreed to fill in after a few other female models had booked and bailed on us. Sean, our male model, was our initial choice and came along as agreed. Both were amazing.
This was to be Sean's second modelling gig, quite the baptism of fire, standing in front of 20 hopeful photographers. Hannah has modelled in the past but was on a hiatus when she agreed to come and spend the afternoon with us. We couldn't have asked for a better subjects for our members, many of whom had never photographed "models"* before.
We split our 20-something group in two to work with our models. Gilvertt lead one group providing structure and guidance to his group. I lead the other group, though it was Arvin who provided most of the guidance while I was chief reflector holder, barking out suggestions and snippets of "wisdom" as they came to me. Gilvertt did a great job keeping his group on task and mostly taking their turn with the model one at a time. My group on the other hand were all in!
The aim of the day was to get the members providing direction to the models, having them pose as they wanted, and you'll see from the images below they rose to the occasion. We have a little work to do on the details but that comes with practise. When you're photographing someone you have a LOT to think about. What are your settings? The model's pose, the way their clothes are hanging. Incidentals like how the hair is sitting, what is their expression, what's in the background, is it distracting, does it match the pose? OK I can click the button now, no wait, something moved, the wind has picked up, the sun just ducked behind a cloud, I need to reset my settings!
But it's like when you first started driving a car. You had so many things to think about... which pedal does what, how far from the corner do I have to indicate? Got to look ahead, the the left, the right, the rear vision mirror. Where are my wipers... just so much... but it is soon banal and you're driving without thinking, well with the appropriate amount of attention to the road, but you know what I mean. It becomes a second nature, and this will too. You'll get to the point where your settings are automatic, but in your brain, not "Automatic mode" on your camera. You'll know the settings you need for the results you want and you will be able to concentrate on your subject. And even the little things with your subject like how the clothes hang, are there stray hairs around, does the face match the pose, will all be easier to pick up when your mind isn't racing trying to think of EVERYTHING at once.
So, even though I barked out a lot of advice during our session, the only piece that is really important is this: do it again... and again... and again. Only through repetition and rote learning will you master the little things so you can truely begin playing with your art.
I look forward to seeing what our members do with their new-found desire to work with models, and encourage them wholeheartedly in their endeavours and pursuit of making awesome images.
* I only put models in quotes because most have photographed people, just not models.