Shooting on a Budget: When to Scrimp and When to Save
Putting together an entry for the British Hairdressing Awards? A photoshoot doesn’t have to be expensive to look good. Here, a selection of hairdressers reveal how to reduce costs without comprising on style.
Sean Nolan, Burlingtons, London
Scrimped on: photographer and clothes
Splurged on: models
“I’m always doing test shoots on a shoestring budget, and it’s often a case of calling in some favours and pulling all my contacts and resources together.
“For my Antique Rose collection, for example, I used our salon makeup artist. A friend of mine is a photographer and shot the collection for free. He also made the set and I paid for the materials. T
“I did the styling myself and it was all from the high street. As long as you have a clear vision of what you want to achieve, you can create great things without spending a fortune. Good fashion is so widely available today and with a little creativity you can easily customise high street clothes and make them look amazing.
“We used new faces from a model agency for the test shoot and, after deciding to go ahead with the collection, we secured their model rights.
“It’s worth investing in good models, but using new faces is a great way of saving money. I am always on the look-out for clients that could make great hair models – most people will happily model for you in exchange for free hair services.
“Another way to save money is to use models that are really versatile so that you can add hair pieces, wigs or extensions. It’s lovely to be able to use professionals in every area, but I have done shoots that have only cost me the model rights and had great results.”
Louise Smith, Toni & Guy, Salisbury
Scrimped on: makeup
Splurged on: versatile models and photographer
“The best way to save money on a shoot is to get more than one look from each model. Don’t spend a fortune on one girl if she doesn’t have a versatile look.
“The photographer and models are the most important areas to invest money. Makeup can be retouched in post-production, but the importance of the photographer and the right lighting cannot be under-estimated.
“Although street casting can work for some shoots, there is a big difference between a beautiful friend and a professional model. You don’t want to spend your time and money on a shoot only for the mate to freeze in front of the camera.
“It is important to fix a budget and stick to it – and make sure you account for additional costs like couriers for the clothes stylist and lunch for the team.”
Skyler McDonald, seanhanna, Putney
Scrimped on: the studio, clothing
Splurged on: time, research
“When doing a shoot, the saying ‘time is money’ is never more relevant. If you don’t have a large budget, save money by investing your time. For example, source the clothing; cool stuff doesn’t cost too much but it can take ages to research and track down.
“If your budget is tight, find a fashion college photographer who will relish the opportunity to create some great images. The same is true of makeup artists and stylists.
“One area I think is not so important is the studio – if you have a great team, you don’t need an expensive venue.
“You need to remember what you want to achieve from the photo shoot. If it is for HJ’s British Hairdressing Awards, it is about the hair. It would be naïve to think that the other components aren’t important, but the bottom line is that it should be about creating amazing hair.”