For this session, I wanted to grab some 24-70mm portraits for the my portfolio and Alison was the perfect model for the concept. I created a mood board and rented a studio and the collaboration was set in place.
Table of Contents Hide
- Model Introduction
- Space on Southside Studios – Studio Rental
- Equipment for the Portrait Shoot
- Shooting All Natural Light
- 24-70mm Portraits
- 24-70mm Portraits – Alison Gallery
- Model Test Shoot – Getting Multiple looks
- Switching Lenses
- Bonus: Sony 55mm Portraits
- Learning from each portrait shoot
- Gear Mentioned In This Article
Many of my model test shoots start out the same. A new model starts following my profile on Instagram and they eventually reach out and ask to collaborate on a TFP shoot or test shoot.
That is exactly what happened with Alison from Dallas, TX. She is a local fashion and runway model that wanted to collab at a local studio. Needless to say, I was up to the task.
Shot with Sony a7iii | Sony 24-70mm GM f2.8 | @2.8 | ISO 250 | @61mm | 1/160sec
Space on Southside Studios – Studio Rental
I booked a small photography studio in Dallas called the Space on Southside. It is a 2 story photography studio with a large open bottom space filled with great natural light.
The large windows that fill up the main wall are great for bounding light into the studio and getting some amazing shots.
The space cost about $75/hr which is pretty standard for most photography studios. I like to support local studios so it was no problem booking the location.
Equipment for the Portrait Shoot
I used my Sony a7iii mirrorless camera and paired it with 2 lenses. I shot the majority of the shoot with the Sony 24-70mm f2.8 zoom lens and I also took some shots with the Sony 55mm f1.8 prime lens.
The Sony 55mm F1.8 is my hands down favorite lens to use on portrait shoots. If you’re interested in learning more about this lens, check it out below.
The last thing I always have on hand is a small Bluetooth speaker. This way I can play some music while we shoot. Silence sometimes kills the vibe, so I always have on with me.
Shooting All Natural Light
For this shoot, I new the studio didn’t require extra lighting as I was shooting mid-day and the light shining into the studio was more than enough to get the job done.
The large north facing windows bounced much of the light off the white walls and concrete and this made for a soft light for the portraits.
I did have a photography reflector on hand but I didn’t end up using it for this shoot. It’s always good to have a reflector on hand just in case you need to bounce more light into the shadows of a subject. If you’re interested, here is a 5-in-1 reflector that is great for multi-use lighting situations.
I started the shoot with the Sony 24-70mm f2.8 GMaster lens. This lens is great for giving me a variety of shots all without moving around.
I can go wide at 35mm and then punch into a close up at 70mm all without ever moving my feet. I love zoom lenses and this one is a staple lens that stays in my bag pretty much 24/7.
The lens is tac sharp and makes for getting shots fast and painless. The lens does have a bit of weight to it but I think the results speak for themselves. Check out the Sony 24-70mm portraits of Alison below.
24-70mm Portraits – Alison Gallery
Model Test Shoot – Getting Multiple looks
Most of my successful model test shoots required me to plan ahead. For this shoot, I had Alison bring at least 5 outfits for the shoot.
We started with Simple looks in jeans and long sleeve shirt and then moved to more fashion based styles.
I moved her around the studio to get a variety of backgrounds and colors so we could pick from the very best shots.
I didn’t want everything to look so similar so keeping her moving was key to the portrait shoot.
Once I had most of my 24-70mm portraits, I wanted to switch it up a bit and use one of my prime lenses.
The Sony 55mm f1.8 is my favorite lens by far. It’s sharp, light weight and very easy to carry around for hours. The lens is quick to focus and does great for natural light and off-camera flash photography.
I knew I wasn’t going to need tons of space to work with this lens, so I took it out and went to work. Check out some of the shots from the session below.
Bonus: Sony 55mm Portraits
Learning from each portrait shoot
The biggest learning take away from this shoot was utilizing the best physical characteristics of the model and highlighting them for the shoot.
Alison was a tall model with long legs and this made some of the wide shots looks so unique. Her legs stretched and gave her the appearance of an even taller model.
Also the close up shots of her eyes and the styling of her mack-up drew attention to her face and facial emotions.
This portrait shoot was a success in my book. I love doing model test shoots and helping models build their portfolios for the future. I am a true believer in utilizing TFP shoots for the my sessions.
Gear Mentioned In This Article
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