The Disabled Photographer 3: Taking portraits - some thoughts
As a disabled photographer my main love is taking portraits. I have had to modify my approach since my stroke and a main part of this is being seated to take them, either on a chair or mobility scooter. If portraits interest you then here are some suggestions.
1) Finding a model; Relatives and friends are your first choice. Offer them free copies as an incentive. Beyond that are professional and near professional models. My website of choice to find them is purpleport, but there are others. The cheapest option here is new models who want to trade time for copies of the photos. If there are none in your area consider a professional, these will cost money but they really understand posing, etc
2) Decide on a location, most amateurs prefer a public location as this makes them feel safer.
3) Check out the location, is it an area where you need to get permission to take photos. National Trust and English Heritage sites are great but not if you intend to sell the photos.
4) Plan your shoot, so think about props, poses and lighting.
5) Several days before the shoot check that all your equipment is working.
6) The shoot. Meet your model and first offer them a drink and talk to them. Explain what you had planned and ask them for their ideas. When you are ready to shoot do so but keep talking to the model and give them positive feedback as you go along. If they are new to modelling they may be nervous.
7) When you finish the shoot, process some of the photos fast and email them to the model. These don't have to be the final shots but models like to see what thy look like and how the shoot went.
8) Make sure at the end of the shoot and in your email you thank them. Do put a reference for them on purpleport or wherever you found them, this will be much appreciated.
9) Revisit your images after a while in order to review and improve your skills.
10) Above all else enjoy the shoot and make sure the model does too, after all you are not the only one to write a reference..