Inspiration Shoots | Basics

Evelyn Eslava and I put this shoot together back in September 2013. It is featured in Issue no. 5 of BEloved Magazine.  You can read it here.  
I'm sharing this particular shoot with you because it was my very first inspiration shoot.  There are three basic stages that go into inspiration shoots:

1.  Planning
There is a lot that goes into planning an inspiration shoot.  You need a photographer, florist, models, make up artist/ & hair (also known as MUAH which I didn't know until more recently!), cake decorator, sometimes a caterer, sometimes a videographer, sometimes an event planner, a stationer/calligrapher, a venue, attire (which sometimes includes rentals or something that someone already has), décor rentals, linens, and all the little details!  A lot of the shoots I've participated in have a common Pinterest board so we are all on the same page as far as the aesthetic.  I've also been to many planning meetings so we can coordinate who is in charge of what. You'll need to plan a day and time that works for everyone.  Make sure you plan plenty of time to get set up.  Coordinate with everyone and make sure everyone is very clear about the plan.  It always goes so much better when everyone involved has a clear idea of what will happen on shoot day.  Then, when it comes time to execute, everyone can go to work doing what they do best.

2.  Preparation/Execution
This is the fun part.  When I did flowers I would rarely see any of the other vendors (sometimes the photographer) because I would get there so early to set up.  I love inspiration shoots because I finally get a chance to meet the other vendors in the industry and see how they do things.  We love to bounce ideas off of each other.  It's fun to form a community of people that you know who understand you and who you can trust.  Sometimes prep takes a really long time.  I did a shoot once where we started set up at 10am and didn't shoot until 5pm, and didn't get cleaned up until after 7pm.  It was a long day, but the results were gorgeous.  For this particular shoot, there weren't as many moving parts, so overall the shoot was around 4 hours.  Hopefully everyone shows up on time and is prepared.

3.  Post Shoot
A lot of people don't think about what happens after the inspiration shoot.  The whole point of an inspiration shoot is to get to do what you do best and hopefully get published on a popular blog or in a magazine so that people will get to see your work.  The photographer is usually the one in charge of submitting their work to different blogs.  I have never submitted anything personally, but once it is accepted sometimes it takes many months until the shoot is published.
Here are some things I learned about participating in an inspiration shoot that I think would be valuable to know!
1.  Connect with People
I think all of the inspiration shoots I have participated in happened because we connected on Instagram or Facebook.  No joke!  Share what you're working on, and comment on what others are working on.  I got connected with Evelyn because someone on Facebook recommended me when she said she was looking for new florists, so it pays off to share what you're doing!  You don't have to wait for someone to discover you, either.  You will find someone who inspires you that you will want to work with.  When that happens, shoot them an email and ask if they would be interested in setting up an inspiration shoot and go from there.  What's the worst that could happen?  They'll say no?  Just keep at it.  It'll happen for you eventually, I promise.
2. Choose your team wisely.
This is so important.  It is great to team up with your friends to create beauty, and I have met some amazing friends because of inspiration shoots.  Because you're investing your own money (flowers, props, rentals, venue fees, etc.) and time into creating something for the inspiration shoot, you need to choose a team who is reliable and responsible.  Sadly, there have been too many times where things have fallen apart because of a lack of organization, communication or professionalism.  There have been more times than not that people go above and beyond, but it does happen.  So, just be cautious.  If your gut tells you not to do the shoot, don't do it.  Not only do you want to be a good fit for everyone else but you want everyone else to be a good fit for you!
3.  Inspiration shoots are kind of like a job interview.
When you're contributing to an inspiration shoot, you are basically at a job interview.  You'll (obviously) want to be on your best behavior.  The vendors you're working with will be paying attention and may or may not refer people to you because they will see how you are to work with through the entire process (planning, execution and post shoot) and what kind of work you produce.  They will see how professional, kind, and awesome you are and they'll want to tell all of their friends about you.  Speaking of which, if you ever need any wedding vendor recommendations, shoot me an email!
I hope that helps a little bit for those of you who are curious.  As always, if you ever have any questions don't hesitate to ask! (See my contact form here)

No comments

Post a Comment

© ERIN NIELSON • Theme by Maira G.