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Last updated: July 02, 2020

How To Nail Your Photo Shoot: 5 Things To Know

#ONESHOT IS OPEN AGAIN! Get crucial tips from an award-winning hair icon!

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Instagram via @antoinettebeenders

Read These 5 Tips Before Your Next Photo Shoot

Now that we’ve reopened entries to the #ONESHOT Hair Awards (it’s true!) and hairdressers are (mostly) back to work, it’s time to talk about photo shoots. That’s why BTC Founder & Creative Director Mary Rector (@marybehindthechair) discussed the five must-have elements of a photo shoot with Antoinette Beenders (@antoinettebeenders), one of the world’s most award-winning hairdressers, including British Hairdresser of the Year and Aveda’s Senior Vice President of Global Professional Artistry. Watch the interview below, then keep scrolling to get Antoinette’s five crucial elements to a winning photo shoot.
Mary and Antoinette talked as part of BTC’s new live series, Meet the Judges, which you can watch on Instagram at @oneshothairawards. Antoinette is one of more than 50 globally-known editorial hairdressers who judge the #BIGSHOT competition. Remember, entries for both #BIGSHOT and #HOTSHOT are now REOPEN until Sept.1, 2020—so take your shot! Click HERE to see all the categories and to learn how to enter.


1. Model selection is KEY.

Choosing the right model can make or break a photo. Antoinette insists that angular cheekbones and strong jawlines are EVERYTHING because of the way the light hits the face and creates shadow and shape. “If someone hasn’t got cheekbones, it means that the light cannot be reflected off the face. The way the light falls off under her cheekbones creates that dramatic contrast of shadow,” she said.


Pro Tip: If you are struggling to find a model, don’t be afraid to go out and look for one. Antoinette used to stand outside of Topshop in London and it helped her learn how to study faces to find what she was looking for. “It really made me learn how to look at people and taught me a lot about looking at faces and knowing what bone structures work for what type of looks.”


Instagram via @antoinettebeenders


2. Makeup is essential to the mood of the photo.

Makeup has the ability to change the vibe of a photo instantly. So it is very important to put the same amount of thought into the makeup look as you would any other element. One of the reasons Antoinette believes the below photo works is because of the execution of the eye makeup. “Makeup is really important here because if you didn’t have these strong eyes, the hair wouldn’t work,” she explained. 


Instagram via @antoinettebeenders



3. Hair isn’t the most important element at a photo shoot. 

When you work behind the chair, hair is the main focus. But on set, there are so many key elements that go in to a photograph. The wardrobe, makeup, movement and body positioning all have to come together in perfect harmony to really make a photo stand out. Antoinette believes that, “Hair is part of the body. The hair is the fabric of the body so to me, the clothes are just as important as the hair. The killer look, no eyebrows, that stare, and the little bit of movement of the ponytail” creates a total package. Antoinette’s idea of the ultimate hair picture is when you can see it in a fashion magazine. “You could see this in Italian Vogue, and that to me is the ULTIMATE hair picture,” she shared.


Instagram via @antoinettebeenders


4. Minimal retouching is IMPORTANT.

Sometimes the quirks of a photo are what makes it special. Don’t create a look in Photoshop because it is a waste of your craft. “If you look at this shape (see image below), it’s not perfect, and that’s what makes it. Don’t retouch that corner or that crown. That will make it look unnatural.” One of the main reasons why Antoinette is so passionate about photos is that they are a moment in time. A snapshot that you will never experience again. It’s important to respect that moment by not over-manipulating the photo after the photo shoot.


Instagram via @antoinettebeenders


5. Cropping can make or break an image.

It is always important to pay attention to the crop of your photo. It can change where your eye is drawn to so you want to make sure that you aren’t distracting from the focus of the shot. It is also important to keep in mind where your image is going and who will be working with your image post photo shoot.


If you are submitting photos for a magazine or advertisement, remember that a graphic designer will be working with your images.  When you work with graphic designers, they always like a little bit of space around the image for flexibility. “When you have a picture, don’t go super close because you’re going to have a graphic designer that is going to take your picture and put it in something that you haven’t thought of and suddenly they can’t use it,” Antoinette advised. Make sure you are allowing them the flexibility they need to properly showcase your work.


PRO TIP: When looking at where to crop your photo, use a piece of paper to visualize what certain crops will look like before you cut your image.


 The #ONESHOT Hair Awards are officially BACK OPEN for entry! From now until September 1, you can take your shot! Tap HERE for more info, rules and how to enter!