Her Notoriety, “Street Notoriety Part 2.” October 7th, 2018. Location: Chicago, Illinois.
Last month I had the opportunity to be a part of a promotional shoot for an event hosted by HerNotoriety, a female streetwear project. The event was for Her Notoriety, Street Notoriety Part 2 on October 7th, 2018 in Chicago, IL.
The event was so crazy and an insane learning experience. It was a great turn out with a majority of the participants being photographers of all experience levels. Normally when I work with photographers it is a 1:1 ratio so this was the first time that I worked with multiple photographers simultaneously. It was crazy because I would pose in a specific location and then a group of them would run over and start snapping from all angles. I felt so out of control in the best way. When I work 1:1, I have an idea of what the photographer is seeing and what I can do to create a certain look. When there is just a crowd of photographers snapping from all angles, there’s nothing you can do besides pray that there’s gotta be at least ONE GOOD angle in that bunch. Definitely learned a few lessons from this shoot and I’d love to share them with you.
*Disclaimer: By no means do I consider myself a model, but I am in front of a camera a lot and I’ve learned a lot from my fair share of cringey-looking photos (Not because of the photographer but because of me). I still have so much to learn and grow so I appreciate all of these experiences to keep improving.
Pick an outfit you are comfortable in
Yeah, style yourself out and do all the things but you can only look as good as you feel. I almost showed up in some tight jeans and then I thought about posing in skinny jeans and almost gagged. If you have the choice, wear cool shit that you can create some killer shapes in. If you feel uncomfortable, most of the time you will look uncomfortable and most of the time the photographer will sugarcoat it and tell you, “Nah, you look fine!” even though you can feel your skinny jeans almost about to rip.
Get familiar with the group real fast
In a 1:1 situation it’s easy to be familiar with the photographer/models because chances are that you already know them before shooting. But if you are in a situation such as a photography “meet-up,” there will be a whole lot of strangers taking your photos and if you feel weird by this, I don’t blame you. So rather than feeling v uncomfy, get to know the photographers when you’re not in frame. Introduce yourself, ask about their experiences, get to know them so you feel like you’re working with a lot of friends, not a lot of strangers. This will also help build relationships for potentially future opportunities and you can meet other cool creatives in the community.
With more photographers comes the risk of more photos looking pretty similar. The more you move, the more variety the photographers will have and the more variety YOU will get in return. Also, notice how I say “move” and not “pose.” I do not consider myself a model but I do stand in front of a camera a lot and I’ve found way more success and happiness in my photos when I move through positions rather than positioning myself and holding. The photos look more organic and natural and more often we are seeing “candids” so photographers generally prefer this look over stoic positions.
Last but not least, just trust yourself. Don’t overthink what you look like or how you THINK you look because this is all negative self-talk. It’s unproductive and serves us no purpose. The only self-talk we should be allowing is us feeling in tune with ourselves. We are always harder on ourselves. I can say first-hand that there have been so many times when during a shoot I wanted to give up because I thought I looked bad or that I wasn’t enough. To my surprise several days later, I would see the photos and immediately think how amazing I looked. It’s incredible what fear can do to us in the moment so don’t buy into it and trust that you are enough.