How to plan your personal style shoot with a photographer

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One of my favorite type of shoots is working with fashion bloggers, models and influencers on personal style shoots! It’s a fun way to showcase their style and build content for their social media and blog calendar. Personal style shoots can be overwhelming but super fun! If you’re a fashion influencer, stylist or business getting headshots, you’re going to want photos that reflect your personal style— which is an important part of your brand.

I had the pleasure of shooting with LaTonia recently, who is a local curvy model and actress—it was so much fun! She had a full on glam squad to help her pose, change and stay cool during the heat! 

Whether you’re planning to start a blog or just want to get some professional photos of your personal style, let’s chat about how to make the shoot a success. Let me know some of your tips in the comments as well!

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Plan, plan, plan. You're a busy woman, with a lot of responsibilities. So, planning is the ultimate tool to make the shoot more productive. 

Plan which outfits you will shoot and how many, plan the location, plan the theme of the shoot. You can collaborate with your photographer on these details so the shoot goes as planned.

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 Book an hour for the shoot. Booking an hour shoot will allow you to have enough time to shoot in a couple locations and change outfits. Within an hour, you can likely make 4-5 outfit changes—sometimes more, depending on how quickly you can change. Shooting 4-5 outfits will give you at least a week's to at most a month's worth of content for your Instagram and blog, depending on how often you post.

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Shoot downtown and in shopping centers. The possibilities are endless with downtown locations. Think about it, you will get at least 10 shots in one spot, and you can literally walk down a block to a restaurant and it looks like you’re in a different place. I love shooting in downtown Tampa, downtown St. Pete and downtown Clearwater. Hyde Park Village is also a popular spot to shoot. So many photo-ready spots to choose from!

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Have a content calendar. This can be very time-consuming on the front end, but trust me when I tell you, it's worth it! When you know what you're going to post tomorrow and the next day, it’s such a relief when something unexpected comes up or you don't have inspiration for that day. I would even recommend queuing up the posts, so all you have to do is hit publish! 

Use a social media planning app to make your feed cohesive. I use Snug which is super handy and easy to use. You can move unpublished photos around to see how everything works together. There are a few apps out there to help with this, so find the one that works best for you.

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Gather outfit and pose inspo beforehand. Pin or save your poses for each outfit as inspo before the shoot. Share the photos with your photographer to ensure you’re on the same page. I love searching Instagram for inspo, and use the save feature to create collections based on the theme of the shoot. Here’s an example of a city chic inspo board for the shoot with LaTonia. Now if only we can get IG to allow us to easily share those collections!

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Put your outfits together beforehand and try them on. You don't want to be throwing outfits together just before the shoot. To avoid forgetting something, having wrinkles in your clothes or not liking the outfit together once you’ve put it on, try on the outfits before the shoot. If possible, share photos of the outfits with your photographer to ensure they fit well with the location you’ve chosen to shoot and to save time.

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Have a blog post idea or theme in mind. How will you post the photos after they’re shot? Let's say for example, you're going to create a blog post for 5 summer to fall looks. You can plan your outfits for the shoot around the post. Gather all of your transitional pieces and accessorize!

Ask your photographer to get closeups and outfit detail shots for more variety, and to show different angles of the look. You can also use more photos of the same look in your Instagram feed this way.

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Monetize your looks. This can be an entire blog post in itself! Your personal style photos can be inspo for your followers and blog audience.  But did you know you can make money off your looks? Sign up for affiliate marketing programs like RewardStyle , ShopStyle or sign up to be a brand ambassador for some of your favorite brands to make a small commission when someone shops your looks! It’s also a great way to collaborate with brands. Yes, they will pay you or send you free product to take photos of you wearing or using it. If you’re going to invest the time and money to get professional photos of your looks, why not monetize?!

What tips do you have for planning personal style shoots? Share with us in the comments! 

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