How do you shoot snaps in the studio?

Snapshots are an obligatory element of a model’s portfolio. They are photos that show the model’s appearance without makeup, jewelry, and retouching. They allow the agency or a potential employer to judge a model’s type, body proportions, and posture. Because of their minimalism, these frames are sometimes jokingly referred to as “prison pictures”. And in foreign agencies, one might hear the name “polaroids” because in the past these photos were taken with an instant print camera right during casting sessions.

Snaps should demonstrate the actual appearance: physical shape, the presence of permanent makeup, hair color, skin and teeth, birthmarks, scars, tattoos, the results of plastic surgery, etc. Therefore, such a photo shoot of the models is regularly repeated. Note that photo editing, even in the format of color correction, agencies do not welcome. For example, the flat tummy app RetouchMe helps to reduce the abdomen, but the condition of the body should correspond to the image at the time when you were invited to work. Otherwise, you could ruin your reputation in the modeling world for a long time.

Recommendations for a model

  • Clothing. Requires a black two-piece swimsuit or black underwear. The panties are suitable for ordinary or string, you can choose the landing on your taste. There must be no patterns, sequins, lace, other decorative objects, or push-ups on underwear. Wear loose-fitting clothes to the photo shoot so that there are no traces on your body from straps, seams, textured fabrics, or belts.
  • Shoes. Sandals or shoes with a heel (7โ€“10 cm is enough) will do. You can choose a model in black or beige. Men can take off barefoot, children – barefoot or in “Czechs”.
  • Hairstyle. Hair must be clean, with no styling and no straightening. You have to shoot part of your pictures with curls and part with a “bouffant”.
  • Makeup. Avoid using any decorative cosmetics. Instead, you can moisturize your skin with a cream and blot with matting tissues.
  • Tanning. You should not lay in the sun, visit a tanning bed or use a self-tanner before filming.
  • Body hair. Girls in 1โ€“2 days should remove hair on the legs, underarms, and bikini zone. For children and men, this requirement is not relevant.

Recommendations for the photographer

  • Camera. You can shoot snaps even on the phone, but the camera is preferable, as it gives a greater depth of color. The lens should be parallel to the floor to avoid distorting body proportions. Set the light sensitivity and aperture to a minimum, refuse to use a built-in flash, and adjust the white balance so that you can realistically portray the tone of skin and hair. You can use a tripod for convenience.
  • Light. You need soft-fill light from a single source. This can be a window, or for example, a large octabox. Use a single source of light, keep shadows to a minimum, and make sure the “fill” of the frame is uniform.
  • Background. Requires a white or light gray canvas. Other options are also possible, but the background must be neutral and homogeneous, without accents.
  • Shooting process. Make sure that the room has a comfortable temperature. The lingerie must fit evenly and symmetrically around the model’s body: no twisted straps, loose panties, or bulging clasps. The person in front of the camera should not pose: arms freely placed along the body, back straight.
  • Set of shots. Framing is the photographer’s only tool when shooting snaps. A full-length set of 7 shots will be required: full-face, 3/4 left and right, profile left and right, from the back (hair in a bun and loose). Portraits from the shoulders should be in the same set, excluding photos from the back. You can add a shot with a smile instead, so the agent can assess the beauty of the facial expressions and know in advance if the model has braces. An extended set can include a photo with hands and other shots at the request of the agency.

The finished snaps should be presented in two formats: individual shots and a collage. In the latter, portrait shots are placed at the top and taller ones at the bottom. At the very bottom, there is brief information about the model (usually in English): full name, date of birth, height, weight, body measurements, eye and hair color, and shoe and clothing sizes.