Lately, more people have been noticing a lot of photographers, clients, and production companies trying to get by with beginner talent/models, and even friends or family, for their videos, print ads, photo shoots etc. instead of seeking professional models and or actors. Of course this is all fine as it is a great case of people helping people. This is also a great way for beginner models to get started and gain some experience. Though, in an effort to save some cash, and that is very important these days, it seems clients and companies are willing to sacrifice much professionalism. Many ads and shoots are not a prolific or dynamic as they use to be, and could be, due to inexperienced talent; i.e. shoots take longer, more shots are needed, frustration mounts and clients may never get that sensational shot that is desired to sell their product. With all that said, I suppose the real questions is, why not just seek professional models?
Professional model refers to models who are represented by an agent or agency. These are models who have spent much time in front of the camera and know how to move without “coaching” (when photographers must continuously tell models what to do and when to do it). They bring experience, professionalism, and knowledge to a photo shoot.
I guess this all falls into the old saying of you get what you pay for. If clients want that phenomenal shot that grabs customer’s attention and gets them talking, they wouldn’t want to be working with someone who has never done this before. This is the investment side of things. The client’s product or whatever they are offering is worth a lot to them. Many times their name is all over it. If they invest in their product, the return will be far greater. Shortcuts do not often lead to success. It may cost some for professional models and actors, but in the end, the outcome will be more stunning, as opposed to average. For example, you wouldn’t hire someone who has no experience to fix the plumbing in your house. If you want it done right, find the best and work with professionals. This is a great way to build a name and invest in oneself.
Professional models meet greater physical requirements as well. They are tall, attractive, slender, and typically with great bodies. Physically, they are set a part. Professional models also know how to move in front of the camera. They transition smoothly between shots so that photographers, producers, and clients have numerous types of shots to choose from. Shoots move along faster and photographers are happier as they spend less time “coaching” the models. Clients and producers are often overwhelmed by the stunning photographs that result.
All said and done, professional models bring greater experience, professionalism, knowledge, and physical characteristics, which will result in better photographs, efficient photo shoots, less “coaching” and headaches, as well as a the possible wow-factor. This investment may even make clients, photographers, and producers money as their print work will run longer and draw more attention. So the next time you are setting up a photo shoot and need models, make certain to think about what you are really trying to accomplish. If you are trying to create something great, then work with great models.