Do you buy clothes for your model?

Discussion in 'General Shop Talk' started by DGMPhotography, Mar 26, 2019.

  1. DGMPhotography

    DGMPhotography Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Okay, so I've been doing things a certain way for awhile, and I'm wondering if that's the norm, weird, or if I should change it up.

    When I have TF shoots with models we typically use clothes that they already have. But sometimes there are certain kinds of outfits I have in mind for the shoot, so I will suggest we go thrifting or order something online and go halvsies on it, and they keep the clothes.

    But now I'm wondering, should I just pay for the clothes myself and keep them for future shoots (I know some photographers that do this) or should I still go halvsies and I keep them? Or maybe I buy them and they keep them? Or stick with going halvsies and they keep them?


     
  2. tirediron

    tirediron Watch the Birdy! Staff Member Supporting Member

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    I don't see any advantage to keeping them. Fashion changes so quickly that their usable life-span is probably 6-12 months at MOST, you never know if the next model is going to be the same size, and how many images of a given outfit do you want? There's also the question of another model wearing "used" clothing; how does she know it's properly laundered? I'd say if you're after a particular look and the model will cover half the cost, that's a pretty good deal for you.
     
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  3. Overread

    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member Supporting Member

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    I can see value in somewhat size neutral clothing and building up a selection of your own long term props. Things like hats, scarves etc... which basically don't matter what size of person they go onto (within reason). But as Tired says when it comes to regular clothing even a few small changes in size might make the difference between something fitting and something not fitting. It might have more benefit for you if you were working long term with a selection of regular models; but if you're doing that then they might as well keep the clothing as they'll be the one wearing it and making use of it. The only risk to you in that case is that they might wear it regularly and get it stained/marked/damaged.

    I think holding onto it yourself is only important if it were something exclusive or unique.
     
  4. DGMPhotography

    DGMPhotography Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    So, it sounds like maybe keeping accessories makes sense, but let the models keep the clothes? What about shoes?

    It's just a weird thing that I guess would be specific to each person. On one hand, if I'm the one asking them to model for me, should I even be asking them to pay for anything? I mean, they are getting a shoot for free, but I'm the one that asked.
     
  5. tirediron

    tirediron Watch the Birdy! Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Honestly, for TFP work, it sounds to me like you're putting out a LOT of money. When I'm doing TFP / Tests I ask the model to bring X/Y/Z colours/styles, and work with whatever she has. Given the price of clothing, this could easily run into hundreds of dollars, and even if the model covers half the bill, that's a lot of money.
     
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  6. paigew

    paigew Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Yes buy them and keep them. You can buy a larger size and use clips to fit it in the back etc.

    Sent from my Pixel 3 using Tapatalk
     
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  7. DGMPhotography

    DGMPhotography Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Yeah, but I'm willing to invest a little bit to make my shoots look good. I've been telling my models that if they're willing to contribute, it may be up to $50 investment.

    I've never spent hundreds on clothes haha. Maybe I'm buying the wrong stuff.
     
  8. chuasam

    chuasam Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Get a stylist and let them handle wardrobe
     
  9. turkeyjerky214

    turkeyjerky214 TPF Noob!

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    I do two types of trade shoots. Ones that are simply for practicing a new technique and ones that are specifically to create something for my portfolio. For the former, I always just have the models bring their own stuff or borrow from a friend of mine who's a designer/stylist. For the latter, I'll either try to get a stylist to trade with us or spend $50-100 on wardrobe (either rental, or I buy and then sell after the fact). Your portfolio is a pretty big aspect of how you make money as a photographer, so I look at it as a marketing expense.
     

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