I cannot stress on just how important it is to make your model comfortable before a shoot, as there is no way you will be able to take hot or any kind of images with real emotions of feelings, if you do not make them feel comfortable.
Some photographers get agitated, and say it’s their job. But you need to keep in mind that it is not easy to open your heart and soul for each shoot, especially when you are working with someone new. They are doing their part, so as a fashion photographer you have to do yours. I am often faced with a similar question, that why do my models look the part they are playing. Is there a special trick? And I keep telling them there is no special trick, I just make them feel comfortable, and create a safe space for them to work.
So you know what is going on in their mind, but do not address the elephant in the room, just keep it natural. And you will be able to see the massive difference in the images.
This alone does wonders for me, as I am able to connect with them, and guide them through the process. The thing is, they need a little push to get in the mood, so joke around and make them feel comfortable. Become a friend, not just their photographers. Do not boss them around, ask for suggestions, and in return give them some. Show them the images you are producing, and explain to them what the shoot demands. This will help you come a long way, as being myself works for me. I am naturally a chatty person, who likes getting to know the people around it. It just allows me to work better, knowing that I have a team I am in sync with.
Because when you make a mood, and the entire crew and the model is tensed, there is no way you will get natural looking pictures. You will get a forced hot look, that does not sit well. Now, these tips were to help making your model comfortable during a regular shoot, so I want you to keep in mind that a hot shoot is different.
Yes, there are models that will instantly catch on, but there are some who need to be comforted, and eased into the process. I am not saying the lack confidence of skills, I absolutely have no words to describe the work they do, and how flawless they are at it. Because I know how I would feel standing in front of a camera, trying to act hot.
It’s safe to say I will fail, and will most people. As it is not easy to be natural and look hot at the same time when faced with a giant camera. It takes time to get used to your surroundings, and get comfortable in the scene, so I suggest you give them time and keep up a healthy conversation. So you know what is going on in their mind, but do not address the elephant in the room, just keep it natural. And you will be able to see the massive difference in the images.