Locations, Ideas, Themes : How To Pick The Best Location For Your Next Photo Shoot

Unless you only work as a studio photographer, chances are you have a lot of location scouting ahead of you. I don’t have to tell you that the right – or wrong – choice of location can determine the success of the entire photo shoot. And who wants to risk that?

So, here are the basics of how to pick the best location for your next photo shoot to help you out!

Photography 101: How To Pick The Best Location For Your Next Photo Shoot

You found the right model for the job, you have the equipment ready, and the idea of a beautiful outdoor shoot is slowly forming in your mind. You’re missing something, though – a location.

If the question how to pick the best location for your next photo shoot is what’s bothering you, stick around for my fail-proof tips!  

Get All Necessary Permits Ready

Not to disappoint you, but you can’t just pull out your gear anywhere you want and start shooting. There are rules to be followed.

Some areas, like national parks, beaches, and such do require special permits, especially if you plan on shooting there with all your photography equipment. That’s why it’s always better to check if there are any permits you have to get before the photo shoot.

Public Places And The Right Timing

When you’re shooting in a public place, you better be prepared for lots of people walking into your camera’s field of view. Another thing you should consider before opting for an urban area is how comfortable your model is with posing in front of other people.

That’s why it’s best to pick a time of the day when the area is a bit less busy.

Think About Light Conditions

When it comes to shooting outdoors, light is one of those make-or-break moments.


Well, the main reason would be the fact that there’s no way for you to stop the sun from moving – natural light changes throughout the day, creating different shadows, so what looked beautiful at dawn, might not seem so great at noon.

Keep that in mind when you’re choosing the location, too.

Make Sure The Clothing Fits The Scene

I think this should fall into the common sense category, but it’s still something worth mentioning – your models need to dress for the part.

It’s not just about creating a certain vibe, though. More often than not, advising your models to dress in accordance to the outdoor location also helps keep them safe.

On that note, wear something a bit more comfortable while you’re taking breaks and walking around the area – I prefer to wear my shoes for plantar fasciitis, for example, and I encourage my models to do so, too.

You don’t want anyone to twist their ankle because they tried walking down the beach in high heels, do you?

Have A Plan B Ready (In Case Something Goes Wrong)

Sometimes it turns out your ideal place is unavailable at the last minute, even with all the careful planning that went into preparation.

What are you supposed to do then? Cancel the whole thing?

Well, I hope not.

That’s why it’s always better to have a plan B ready. You never know when things might go wrong, so have an alternative area nearby where you’ll be able to shoot without disturbances.

The Bottom Line

These are all simple tips on how to pick the best location for your next photo shoot, but they’re worth nothing if you’re not willing to be thorough, and check everything twice before you even book a shooting.

Remember, it’s your job to keep everything under control, for your and your model’s sake.

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