Fresh out of college I had no clue what a styled shoot was… and I wish I did! The first couple years of my business I struggled searching for opportunities to attract the brides that were as obsessed with photos and gorgeous details as much as I was! How could I make brides just trust me?” Once I discovered styled shoots my business grew dramatically and clients were starting to find me through other vendors, outside of my network of friends and family!
So, What exactly is a Styled Shoot?
Styled shoots are ideal for collaboration opportunities with make up artists, furniture rentals, models, calligraphers, wedding planners, florists… basically anyone in the wedding industry looking to gain high quality images and build local vendor relationships. It’s a WIN-WIN for all involved!
Let’s say for example a florist has a talent of making bouquets and extravagant instals (breathtaking ceremony spaces), but she only has an iPhone and a cute vintage chair in her living room to photograph her pieces. A styled shoot brings a handful of vendors together to showcase everyone’s talents at once for the largest IMPACT!
So now… Imagine having the opportunity to have a professional wedding photographer take photos of her bouquets while a model (in full hair and make up, wearing a designer gown) holds them? Or maybe even displaying centerpieces on a fully designed sweetheart table? The possibilities are endless and everyone’s work is elevated!
But let’s be real for a sec… These styled shoots take time, innovative thinking, hundreds of emails, collaborating and honestly a lot of work! So if you’re reading this and thinking this is way out of your league, don’t worry! I’ve been there. Styled shoots don’t just pop up over night, but there are lots of little things you can do TODAY to help elevate your photography!
If you’re anything like me, I’m sure you’re a craft hoarder… So I bet you have boxes of ribbon, scrapbooking paper, stationary, and tons of crafty stuff somewhere in your home! If not, a quick trip to Hobby Lobby or Target will do the trick! Next take them outside or find a window with the best natural light and play with your items! Add some jewelry or a borrow a friends ring for a wedding vibe! The trick here is that you DON’T need 11 vendors to start creating your own mini styled shoots, you just need to get crafty!
2. OFFER YOUR SERVICES
Join your local Tuesdays Together group or reconnect with facebook friends that are also interested in the wedding industry! Maybe your college roommate recently got into wedding planning or your sister’s best friend from the 3rd grade has been making baby shower cakes and shows an interest in weddings as well! Get on it, stat! Offer to photograph their head shots or examples of their work in exchange for your building your portfolio. Offer them the high -res files and share their posts online and they will be forever grateful!
3. Step It Up
Once you have created professional relationships with these individual businesses and they are happy with their experience, nows the time to encourage a collaboration! Just by starting small with 2-3 vendors is plenty! You can even add some extra legitimacy by asking local wedding venues to host. Some are hesitant to collaborate because they don’t understand the instant value or return of their time, but once you explain the details many will be on board!
Here’s some samples of Styled Shoots that REALLY made my heart happy!
Would you EVER guess that this wedding dress was picked up at Goodwill the morning of this shoot?! True story.
If you’re feeling overwhelmed and just want to get started photographing all of the pretty details, well no worries! I have you covered!
The NEXT Styled Pop Up Series event coming soon!!
June 6th in Gilroy, CA
If you liked this post, you will LOVE these…