Photographing a fashion show is a lot of fun but there are steps to follow before you get on the riser and join the rest of the press photographers.
First and foremost, you want to make sure you’ve identified the event, and by this I mean research as to what typically takes place at the event you will be covering. Perhaps a place to start is the event’s website. Images from previous events host by the same title in previous years or events hosted by the same production company. This will help you formulate an idea for how things will go that day. Needless to say, there are times where all preparation goes down the drain and you must improvise on the spot.
Once you’ve gathered as much information about the event and, if you are lucky, have gotten some glances as to what is to come you may want to start selecting the gear you will be using for the event. This will take multiple determining factors such as lighting, distance, speed, and post production needs.
It is typical that Fashion Shows are at night, yet their main purpose is to showcase a line of clothes. Most of the time designers choose a very well lit venue or location to showcase their garments and “most of the time” there is no need for an added flash. A hot shoe flash unit is helpful for the coverage of the event where the models are getting ready (make up and dressing up, etc.).
Be sure that if time is permitted to cover the “getting ready” portion of the event you have allotted enough time to return and secure a favorable spot on the riser. There are times where the space on the Press/Media riser is limited and overload of photographers or cameramen are forced to move to less desirable areas where direct sight is limited or impossible.
On the riser space, once again, is limited and most people that secure a spot are strong about protecting their territory. Be respectful and courteous to others line of sight.
For fashion shows it is important to achieve the best “white balance” possible. If a fashion show is coordinated by a seasoned production company, there will be a press conference where designers will meet and greet the press. This segment wasn’t just designed to meet and greet the designers but also to make sure lighting scenarios are tested and a “while balance card” is displayed for photographers to adjust their gear accordingly.
As a marketing tool, I upload my images over to Facebook and share them with the models, designers, production company. I watermark them for copyright protection and allow them to purchase the images they like.
I hope this brief article is helpful to those interested in Fashion Show Photography.