You’ve spent a little while preparing for your first nude photoshoot – possibly with hopes of becoming a Hopeful Suicide Girl and now it’s time for you to get your kit off and shoot your first nude set – very scary! I can only relay what you would expect on a shoot with me as your photographer and all photographers and their processes will vary, so this is just a general idea of things you might expect and some tips to make your shoot the best it can be!
Final preparations on the day:
- Look after yourself. For me, this would be not picking or biting my lips…terrible habit, looks awful and less than ideal for a nice photoshoot! For you, this might be avoiding foods that bloat you that morning, not going hard at pole classes this week and bruising the hell out of your thighs, or resisting winding your cat up until you’re used as a human scratching post. However, these things are not always going to be in your control. I’ve shot girls that have flown head first off a bike and been covered in scabs, girls covered head to toe in insect bites, sunburnt and even one lady that sliced her leg open during an angle grinding act. So don’t worry, we will work with what we’ve got but just try and do your bit to keep yourself in one piece!
- No tight clothes. Try not to wear underwear or jeans that are too tight before the shoot because once you’ve stripped out of your shoot outfit, you’ll end up with lines all over the place! Not the end of the world, but something to be aware of.
- No hairbands on wrists. This is the worst thing in the world and I often don’t notice until we’re halfway through the shoot, I don’t know why, but it just ruins photos and lots of people will look on it as lazyness that we didn’t notice – doh!
- Don’t bring people. Lot’s of people will disagree with this one and if you’re working with a total stranger then, sure, maybe bring a friend to help you feel safe but, to be honest, if you don’t feel safe or trust your photographer enough to not bring an escort, I really don’t think you’re going to feel that comfortable shooting nude with them! Please, please work with someone you’re comfortable with. If you want to bring someone, most photographers will allow if you ask in advance but a lot of the spaces we shoot in can be really small, and occasionally there might be other girls around getting ready in a different room and so having strangers around can be a bit awkward for them – particularly if it’s your mum or boyfriend. Personally, I don’t recommend it because no matter how supportive your friend/boyfriend/mum is it’s very different having them watch you be told to get your boobs out and stick that butt out! It can be really awkward and even when it isn’t you’ll probably spend half the shoot talking to your friend and worrying if they’re bored, distracting you from the shoot. Bring someone along for the day trip but let them chill out in a near-by coffee shop until your done. This is your shoot and your time. If a photographer does say no to you bringing a chaperone, it’s not always because we are all arseholes. Extra people bring a higher security risk to us, our equipment and the location we’ve likely rented. We don’t know you or your boyfriend you want to bring with you and personally I have been made to feel uncomfortable and unsafe by chaperones in the past and have to keep my own safety in mind.
- Don’t be late. Please do try your best not to be late – you might end up shortening the time you have to shoot and you’re only going to stress yourself out.
- Bring some music. Not a must, but can’t hurt. Just your phone will do so don’t forget your charger!
- Double check your outfit. You might need some touch-ups on your hair and make-up when you get there and double check your outfit for any tags or anything that’s gone awry!
Tips for during your shoot:
- Discuss any specifics first. Let your photographer know if there’s anything you don’t want to be visible – maybe you have specific blemishes/marks you want to mention to them, or maybe you don’t want to be completely nude and only want to shoot implied. Anything you want to ask or tell your photographer, do it first! Any questions about what you can or can’t do with your images. Probably best to get any payments out of the way first, too, so neither of you forget.
- Relax. Not something we can force but try your best to stay relaxed – your photographer should help you feel at ease. My shoots are very relaxed, we talk more than we shoot and it stays that way throughout the entire process. We’re not going to work in silence, you naked with me staring at you so you’re not actually going to feel as uncomfortable as you might imagine. Almost every shoot I’ve ever done, girls are surprised at just how comfortable they feel by the end.
- Don’t Rush. For Suicide Girls, your set will be shot as a strip down. I talk to my girls the whole way through the shoot so we knows what’s going to come off next and how but don’t rush it. Taking items of clothing off slowly will work well as props for your poses to keep some variety in the shots. If you’re running out of time or you’ve blatantly got enough shots, your photographer will let you know that it’s time for the next step.
- Trust your photographer. I always help girls with poses that flatter them so listen to your photographer when they’re telling you that you look good! Lot’s of poses that look great feel very odd but, trust us, we know what we’re doing and that’s why you’ve chosen us! Don’t keep asking to look at the back of the camera, I will show my models photos now and again so this doesn’t actually happen to me (lots of photographers complain about this) but, generally, it’s best to just wait until the end. I always let girls take some photos of the camera screen at the end so they can show their friends and post on social media etc but don’t be put off by anything at this stage – sometimes I take 500 photos and we need 50, so if you’ve blinked in 450 photographs we are still fine, so don’t worry.
- Have fun. Enjoy yourself! Enjoy the confidence boost and just revel in some time to feel good about yourself. Remember, SG don’t expect Suicide Girls to be professional models, and love the “girl next door” vibe in a set. You might be an amateur model but you are not going to believe it’s you in the images when you see them, you’re going to be very pleasantly surprised when given the opportunity to view yourself as as others do!
- Treat Yo’ Self. Go out for your favourite food, chill out, you did it. Now you have completed your first shoot naked and will be waiting to hear back from your photographer. Hopefully you are feeling very excited!
Other Blogs in this series: