To most of the people who follow alternative models a new photo is just a photo of their favorite pretty girl. They notice her makeup, her dress and hairstyle, and admire once again her beauty and grace. Of course, we always tag the photographer, maybe even post a photo with their watermark, but who really notices them?Not a lot of people, but I know they don't do it because they don't care. Many of them just don't know how important the role of a photographer is to our work, how much they contribute to that final product everyone enjoys and loves.
This blog is a short info story and a tribute to some amazing artists I worked with. Some might say that they are just "clicking" the camera, or just mechanically taking photos of a gorgeous girl, so the final result must be all her. To me, that can not be more inaccurate. Personally, I don't know enough about the art and techniques of photography, so I won't go into those details, but I do know that the photographers makes a photo as much as the model does. They make the other half of all the magic ingredients needed to create a professional fashion photo. And trust me, not everyone can do it and it is far from just clicking anything.
First of all, they need to capture the outfit and all its details well, because that is what the sponsors need, and what we are doing our job for. But, at the same time, they must try not to make something catalog-sterile like and stand out from others, keeping their signature style. On top of all that, they have to capture our true nature and preserve the traits that make us unique and show our modeling skills.
So, that is a lot of pressure. Then comes the personal part- many of the models are divas, too demanding, or have no clue what they want. Both extremes are equally horrible for anyone to work with. I hate it when I hear somebody making a comment that a photo is bad because a bad photographer made it. In my experience, photographers tend to be very kind and patient people. What varies is their knowledge of technical details and the level of their equipment. People who never stood in front or behind a camera would be surprised just how many factors can influence the overall look and quality of a photo.
Lighting, position of location, size of location, weather, everything that is going on in the background.
And of course, the most important element- their relationship with the model.
I am sure a lot of people would strongly disagree that being friends, or at east friendly with your photographer isn't necessary or important at all. I see a lot of models working with complete strangers, on just a professional basis, and they do make great photos. There are even models who take their own photos in studios and it works for them. I need that human touch, the brainstorm and connection, because I do't do this mechanically either. I'm not just a coat hanger for pretty goth clothes. I won't even waste the space talking about "selfie" models. Nope, just no.
Anyway, for me, that connection, it is an essential part of each photo shoot. That is why I tend to work more with same photographers. I am a very extrovert and funny person, and I really enjoy what I do, so I need my photographer to be able to laugh with me and not think I'm weird
I also need him to know me at least a bit, so he will know how to capture a perfect moment and how to help me express my emotion naturally. Modeling is a two-way street, especially the growth. I learn so much from my photographers, as they give me tips and ideas how to pose better, how to relax more deeply. On the other hand they learn from me, what is important in fashion photography, what goth really is (not all the photographers in this world are goths ) and how to explore darker and more controversial styles in their work and photo processing.
So please, every time you see a great photo on my page or any other, take a second to consider how much hard work and passion it took from both sides - model and the photographer to create it. And when you share or use our photos, please credit them too. They might not be in the photo, but they are a big part of it. And don't be too quick to judge that someone is not good enough, because they, just like us, learn and grow with every set, and they try their best. Most of the time, when a photo is really bad, it is the model's "fault". Awkward expression or pose can ruin a photo made even by the world's best photographer.
I strongly object to all of the models who brag about not having to pay for shoots, or criticizing their photographers publicly. If you are not satisfied with somebody's work you are free to choose someone else.
I always pay for my photos, not because I am not "big" enough to have people wanting to take my photos for free, but because I respect their time and effort. I don't take advantage of anyone. The deal of course, is yours, you can pay in cash pr let your photographer sell the photos he makes, or promote each other in some other way that would benefit both sides. But please, never take their work for granted.
So, to all of the lovely, hard working artists behind the camera, I respect you so much, and I know how demanding your work is.