FAQ: Photography, Finding Models, and More!

Hi, it's me again.

Today, I'm going to answer some questions I get frequently on my Instagram and Facebook. Let's just get into it!

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Q: What gear do you use?

A: I use a Nikon D750 for my camera body and I switch between a 50mm f/1.8 lens and a 70-200mm f/2.8 lens. I use the 50mm for my portrait shots and the 70-200mm for most of my music shots. In addition to these, I always carry a couple prisms and an extra battery pack with me!

Q: What do you use to edit?

A: I use Lightroom primarily for software and a mixture of VSCO and RNI Films presets. I just got an iPad Pro so I'm looking to expand my software library with Adobe Creative Cloud. Hopefully, it makes my work flow easier! I don't really use Photoshop for my fashion/music work, but I did use it a lot for my abstract work in college.

Q: Where do you shoot? Where do you find locations?

A: I live in-between Providence, RI and Boston, MA, so I try to find locations around those two areas. I find locations by driving around and exploring. I also look on Instagram to see where people are shooting and where secret spots are!

Q: What are your rates?

A: It really depends on the shoot and client, the difficulty of the shoot, the travel situation, and the length of the shoot. For portrait sessions like the ones you'd see on my Instagram, I charge $100-$150 for an hour/an hour and a half shoot. This does include the editing. Anything else has a rate depending on the situation! Most of the time, I personally reach out to models and ask them to shoot for my portfolio, which is free. If you ask a model to shoot, don't expect them to pay.

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Q: How do you find models to work with?

A: When I first started out, I asked friends and people I followed on Instagram. I got rejected... a lot. I didn't have money to pay models for sessions, but occasionally, people would agree! After I started picking up the amount of portrait shoots I was doing, I reached out to a modeling agency in the area and asked to shoot their new faces so they could have images for their portfolio starting out. Now I source models from both Instagram and a modeling agency. Really, everything is about networking and shooting your shot. Don't be afraid to reach out. The worst that can happen is they say no.

Q: How do you get photo passes for concerts?

A: When I went to MassArt, some of my friends volunteered at local music magazines and shot low-key shows around the city. I reached out to the Allston Pudding and they put me on as a volunteer photographer. From there, I reached out to Vanyaland and was put on their photography team as a paid photographer. Basically, to start out in music photography, find a music blog in your area and ask to work with them. Press for musicians will focus on you more if you have credentials from somewhere. The bigger the publication, the bigger the shows you can shoot. If you don't have a local magazine you can work for, make your own and get your friends to contribute or find one out of state that will allow you to cover shows remotely.

Q: When will you draw again? Will you draw me a tattoo?!

A: I specifically bought my iPad Pro for drawing because I haven't drawn anything since I went to MassArt!! I'm excited to start again because I've really missed it. But no, I won't be making tattoos again for a while, not until I get the hang of this thing or unless Deane gets an itch for a new tattoo again.

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These next ones aren't frequently asked, but I thought I'd throw them in here!

Q: What has been your favorite concert you've shot so far?

The best one that I've been to has to be, hands down, Unknown Mortal Orchestra. I'm a huge fan and they did not disappoint at ALL. I was having such a good time, I wasn't as focused on getting good photos, which is something I need to work on. But, it was a crazy good experience. As for my favorite photo-wise, it would have to be either Flatbush Zombies or Tyler the Creator (the first time). I don't often have the opportunity to shoot rap shows, but they have proven to me that they make the best photos. 

Q: What is the part of photography that you hate the most?

Scheduling. I hate having to go through the process of scheduling because I never know when I have time off and it's hard to be in sync with people and their own schedules. I also just want to shoot all the time so if I didn't have to plan and I could just shoot, I'd be so happy. Another annoying thing is being told how to take photos at a show. At a Tiny Moving Parts show, a drunk guy kept following me around the venue, trying to tell me how to get the best shot and what angles I should get and it got to the point that he was interrupting my shots. I was getting paid to shoot this show so I was not happy. Fun fact: I was shooting Brockhampton at Boston Calling and a guy did the same thing to me. I turned around and IT WAS THE SAME GUY. Maybe that guy just sucks.

Q: What are your goals for photography?

Get published. Get paid to travel to gigs. Go on tour. Collaborate with a major brand. Take photos at a Bon Iver show.

Any other questions? Don't be afraid to send them to me through DM/email or comment below!