Model & Fashion Studio Shoot

Model & Fashion Studio Shoot Model & Fashion Studio Shoots What to Know What to Use.   Is this a question that is asked whilst considering your first or indeed […]

Model & Fashion Studio Shoot

Model & Fashion Studio Shoots

What to Know What to Use.


Is this a question that is asked whilst considering your first or indeed early stages of fashion model studio shoots, what do I take with me what do I need to know.

For starters the studio shoot is an totally controlled lighting environment  so knowing your lighting is the most important, knowing how lighting works where to position your lighting is essential for good results, there are plenty of very good lighting techniques out there and tutorials via youtube to consider, but which one works for you and you can master easily takes time, so never rush into studio lighting, once you do and the client/ model is there you need to know what your doing.

So lighting can work in several key stages:


Lighting type

Power required

Amount of lighting needed


Are just a few to start with, Most studio hired environments come fitted with all the lighting you require , but this does not mean you can switch on your camera and everything will be hunkydory , far from it, in most cases the studio you hire will have some nice kit including the remote triggers to operate the lighting whether its strobe or on or off camera flash light.

The using of softboxes and reflectors all come into play as well, depending on what type of lighting effect your looking for in your photographs, for example Flash lighting will cause harsh lighting if that’s the effect your looking for however if your looking for softer lighting then a softbox over your flash will help.

If your looking for that much better softer lighting then a strobe light softbox setup will be the better options for you, Check with the studio that you are looking to hire what equipment they have or in many cases there website will normally list their equipment, in many cases the lighting use and some other equipment use will be included in the price, so something the consider before booking is what do you get for your monies use.

In some cases I do take along some my own gear with regards reflectors and foldable backdrops as some studios will charge a little more for extra colour backdrops.

So what other equipment aside from your camera would you consider taking lets have a look:

Light meter

Your own flashes as backups

Extras lenses

Plenty of memory cards

An extra camera body to save time swapping out lenses (as most studio hire you have an allotted time frame which does not  normally cover set up time so you need to be ready go)

Reference card. (Handy Tip)

Now I would normally have a reference card with me to show the many hundreds of poses that I wish to consider for the client/model I feel this is a easy system to use as your mind will be full of camera settings and lighting requirements and to try and remember hundreds of poses to try will at times become a little stressful, so why make it easy on your self have some pre-printed pose images made up in a folder that you can refer to as a guide.

Using the strobe lighting system.

Studio strobe lighting would normally consist of a modelling lamp with a flash bulb built around the model lamp, the modelling lamp will light your client/model and can be adjusted so that you can see the type of light lighting your model etc, once you are ready to shoot the flash tube will fire and the whole system will reset itself in less than a second or two.

Ladies photo ShootB&W model shoot Highkey Model shoot HIGHKEY model shoot




Strobe settings:

Something asked a lot is what settings do I use, the simplest way to set your lighting is for example if there is a 4x light set up in the studio which would be 2x lights lighting the backdrop and 2x lights lighting the foreground space where the client/model is standing, always remember to set the rear light 1 stop above the light at the front so if your rear lights are set to 4 stops of light for example then set your front lights to 3 stops of light this will ensure that background will be in this case using a seamless white backdrop pure white and the lights at the front will light your client/model in a nice balanced light, now depending on the type of shooting that you are doing this is the general rule unless you are looking for high key lighting or low key lighting, then the set up will change slightly.

I will touch on this subject in another tutorial.

So we have learnt that a basic 4x light set up requirement s consist of having a lit background and good lit foreground the softboxes located at the front and reflector strobes facing the backdrop with the correct stops of lights as stated above.

Flash lighting.

As most studios will have strobe lighting as standard there some studios that require you to provide your own lighting flash lighting can be used for this purpose however flash guns can take a lot of power and so good quality batteries and even battery booster packs would be required, if shooting for a while, Now flashgun or speedlights as they are known can be positioned in just the same was as strobe lighting and you can attached softboxes built for flashguns etc, however there are many types, the simple rule is the softer the light you want the bigger the softbox is required, you can of course purchase full size softboxes from 60×90 to 100×120 and so on they would come with light diffusers you simply fix you flashgun inside.

Flashguns using them off camera will require a form of triggering they are a couple of types of ways to perform this, either by infrared or radio triggers.

There are many types of triggers on the market today and at all different types of prices to suit all. For better accuracy and reliability I would suggest a radio trigger set as they use radio frequencies to communicate from flash to camera, the infrared would be like your TV remote and line of site would be required, and of course if you are thinking of using these outside in bright sunlight this can cause an interference problem at times, so radio triggers are the better option I feel.

With remote triggers attached to your flashes you can control several flashes at once to all act together as one to light your subject and with each flash you can set the power differently for each one, giving you some great flexibility on lighting your subject.


Ladies Shoot Ladies Shoot

Extra Lighting options


Once you have established the basics of lighting and how to light your subject there are more options to light different angles of your subject, for example boom arms for hair or rim lighting which effectively is a light suspended above the subject lighting them from above and slightly behind them. The use of reflectors to bounce light on to the subject this can be a very effective way of having a one main light source and just a reflector for an outdoor shoot.


If you are thinking of trying the studio shoot idea I would say firstly have a look at some tutorial videos to grab some idea of lighting that is commonly used and lighting positions before booking your first model or fashion shoot, or you may want to book  a studio and grab a friend to help stand in as a model and practice your own ideas techniques you have learned it’s a great way to get in to studio photography and you will learn a lot.

 studio Session

I hope this is a useful and practical tutorial for anyone wanting to start off in studio photography

Thanks for reading I’m Simon Everett  @
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About Simon Everett

Simon Everett Photographer. I was Born in the midlands the Heart of England amongst the peace & tranquil surroundings of open fields and the sounds of the natural countryside, I moved to the southeast some years later and started and though still in the countryside of Kent I cannot be to far from nature, & the changing seasons Simon Everett Photography Kent – I offer professional Wedding, Events, Parties, & Commercial photography in Kent, as well as portrait and newborn photography across The whole of Kent area including Some London Boroughs. Wedding photography is my passion and my style is contemporary, modern, reportage, Dramatic, classic vintage and natural as well. We provide a mixture of styles to suit various tastes and we can adapt to your requirements