FAQ about my shoots

 

Locations

Dallas and the surrounding areas provide interesting urban architecture which lend character to the shoot. I am open to shooting in other locations and for select clients; I'll even shoot in your home, as I understand that sometimes being there can make you more comfortable. Currently, I do not have a permanent studio space. 

Lighting

I have a strong preference for using natural light because it creates a more even photograph and a more subtle and flattering headshot.  I strongly recommend scheduling your headshot appointments during the daylight hours to achieve maximum results. Early morning or evenings are best; an hour after sun-up and an hour before sun-down.  Regardless of the lighting during your shoot, I want you to be relaxed and believe that keeping the equipment needs to a minimum helps achieve that. 

Time requirements

A typical photo shoot takes about two to three hours and we can take as many breaks as you like.  My approach is casual, we will talk a lot and I will be taking photos of your natural expressions. This allows me to capture you when you have achieved a maximum comfort level which in turn creates the most attractive end result.

 

 

The Preparation 

Looking your best for a photo session 

Don’ts: 

  • Pull an all nighter, the night before your shoot
  • Over grooming. Remember a little goes a long way.
  • Wearing disheveled clothes; please bring them on hangers and/or unwrinkled.
  • Show up in a hoodie for a headshot. Headshots require professional attire just as much as action or full body shots.
  • Go tanning right before a shoot. Natural is the way to go
  • Make drastic changes to your appearance within three days of your photo shoot, like tanning or shaving your body hair. Tanning dries out your skin, and shaving leaves razor bumps even on the best skin. If you're changing your hair, get it cut at least a week before the shoot so it has time to adjust to its new style. 

Do’s 

  • Be well-rested and avoid alcohol and cigarettes the night before. Both are bad for your skin.
  • Be well hydrated (dehydration also affects skin). Some fitness and figure models avoid water for a few hours immediately prior to a shoot, if water-retention is sometimes an issue. If this is an issue, drink a small black coffee or glass of red wine 30 minutes before the shoot.

   

Finally, do not stress, this should be a fun experience for both you and the I.

 

What to wear

 

Bring a few outfits to the shoot and I will  help you pick the right one(s). 

  • Headshots and most portraits:  Comfortable pants, even jeans or shorts
  • Headshots (only) : shoes usually don't matter, at all, unless you specifically ask for a full-body shot. 

Make sure your clothes are comfortable and fit well — nothing baggy! For men especially, a shirt that seems a little too tight is better than a shirt that is too baggy. (A shirt generally fits right if the seam where the sleeve starts sits exactly on the bend of your shoulder; short sleeves should always end at least an inch or two above the elbow, long sleeves should end just below the bend of your wrist.) 

Solid colors look better than prints. But please remember that these are all rules of thumb — some men look great in a clean, white t-shirt, and some women can pull off a subtle print. Use your best judgment. Men should not wear jewelry and women should wear it conservatively. Dressing in layers always looks good.  

  • Caucasians and light-skinned individuals : Dark colors are better than light colors
  • African-Americans and Pacific Islanders :  Clothing lighter than skin tone is acceptable.

Guys - White undershirts or T-Shirts (or black) are always classic, so plan to bring one if the shot is casual !

Again - PLEASE don't bring wrinkles clothes.

 

Other Clothing Tips: 

  • Try to avoid stripes and plaid.  Solids photograph much better!  Neutral colors tend to be the best.  White seems to make people in photographs appear larger than they really are. 
  • Avoid large, bold brand names or words on clothing – This is YOUR shoot, not an advertisement
  • If you wear a t-shirt, use a dark t-shirt to wear under dark shirts.  A white t-shirt triangle under a dark shirt really sticks out!
    • Some shots are close up, others are full length: plan what you will wear accordingly.
  • For family portraits,  wear something that makes all of you look like you're "on the same team."  One person wearing stripes, another plaid, and another wearing polka-dots can make your portrait look  confusing.
  • Best tip for jewelry is to keep it simple. We want the attention on you.  Big, shiny jewelry can be a distraction
  • Ladies - Remember that your nails might show. If they have the polish chipped off here and there, it could show.  Some casual shots may be done barefoot in warm weather, so don't forget about those toes!  Avoid overly bright colors.  Natural or basic colors work the best.   

 

Hair, Skin care and Make-up: 

Digital photographs pick up every pore and blemish. If you don't moisturize, your skin can have a red, cracked surface. Exfoliation helps, allowing the moisturizer to penetrate the skin.  Remember to use lip balm

If you decide to do your own make-up, wear just a little more than you would normally, but do not cake on heavy foundation or rouge.

Lipstick should not be two shades darker than what you normally wear. Avoid makeup with "sparkles" in it as sparkles do not photograph well and distract from you.  

Come with your hair as close as possible to the way you want it.  I keep a makeup artists and hair stylist on retainer and can contract with either to have them available at a shoot.    Try to avoid makeup with an “SPF” in it.  The SPF chemicals tends to create a funny-looking shine in photos. 

Guys should try to be clean-shaven. Stubble can be tricky to shoot well and can be distracting from your best features.  It's also near impossible to 'photoshop' out of a photo.

Bring a comb or brush!  And a small mirror!

 

Props: 

You can bring props that help describe you!  Some popular choices are: 

  • Sports equipment (football, hockey stick, baseball bat, helmet, uniform etc.)
  • Musical instruments are great too.  Bring your tuba!
  • Hobbies - if you have a hobby that helps define who you are, bring a sample and we’ll see how it works in your portrait as a prop.
  • Tools, cars, your dog – your imagination is the limit.  

  

 

Rates: 

General rates  for various photo sessions: 

  • Headshots: $250
  • Portraits: $350
  • Starter Modeling Portfolio: $400 

Substantial discounts apply for full-time college students and military. 

Models posing for my own fine art projects may qualify for reduced rates on other photography. The rate reduction depends on the individual circumstances and/or my ongoing art projects at the time.

If you have any questions about my rates;  please ask - I am negotiable in special circumstances.

 

What you get for your sitting fee 

Your sitting fee will include the following: 

  • Two hours of photography time
  • A minimum of 200 images.
  • A private, online proof page of the best 10-20 images, retouched, selected by the photographer.  These shots can also be used by you afterwards for online display, as long as RagShots.com / Richard A Gordon is credited.
  • A disk of all the shots (original and unedited) from your session.  I will also provide on a thumb drive for $10 additional.
  • Your choice of two final images that will be retouched, resized and ready for you to take to a printer. 

You can purchase additional images to be retouched for $10 each.  Printing is an additional charge. 

 

A word about retouching: 

With the right lighting, makeup, and posing, my photos require very little editing.  I'll generally only do the following light retouching: 

  • Brightening the whites of the eyes
  • Cleaning up loose hairs
  • Softening of lines
  • Smoothing of skin/reduction of pores
  • Whitening of teeth
  • Removing of blemishes
  • Changing color to black and white, or other toning
  • Softening of background
  • Cropping the overall image

 

Final Details 

Scheduling: 

I generally like a week's notice to schedule a shoot (two weeks is ideal). But if you have an immediate need for your photos, do not hesitate to contact me and we'll see if I can get you in. 

Rescheduling, or failure to cancel a shoot: 

I understand  things come up and sometimes you are going to have to cancel a shoot. I  am very flexible when a client communicates with me, however, failure to tell me you are not going to show up for a shoot will require you to pay a non-refundable $75 no-show charge before you rebook any future appointment(s). The $75 will be applied toward the cost of your rescheduled shoot, but will not be refunded if you cancel or don't show again. This applies to all clients. 

Copyright

I own the copyright to all images that I create. As a model or subject, you are allowed to use the photos for marketing, personal purposes and make (and distribute) as many copies as you like, however you are expressly forbidden from selling any images taken by me, for any reason, without my written consent. These rights may be purchased, per image.

 

All models will have to sign a model release; no exception.

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