As an artist manger, I am realizing how important a great photo shoot is to the overall marketing plan for a music artist. While I have been involved in music marketing for years, my job in the past normally began after the product managers had the music packaged and ready to go. Now I find myself involved with every step in the marketing process and that being especially true with independent artists. Thankfully, my wife and business partner, Diana Stancil, has expertise in styling and photo shoots. Diana has been involved with many Jaci Velasquez photo shoots ranging from People Magazine shoots to movie shoots. I always wondered why some photo shoots were more expensive than others and why it is necessary to have so many people involved. This became very clear at a recent photo shoot for our artist Holly Starr.
Kristin Barlowe was the photographer chosen for Holly’s shoot. Kristin is revered as one of Nashville’s top photographers. She does an incredible job not only with photography but with the overall imaging. Kristin is especially great with females so she was a natural choice for Holly. Some of her past work includes photo shoots for Taylor Swift, Martina McBride, Wynonna, Jaci Velasquez, Kellie Pickler, and Amy Grant.
The first thing I noticed was how important the lighting and digital image team are to a shoot. The “Hood Brothers” (Derrick Hood & Joel Hood – no relation) were Kristin’s team for the shoot and what an amazing team they are! Similar to a professional golf caddie, these guys were one step ahead of Kristin on every move. Not only did they take care of setting up the lighting and capturing the digital data, but they also suggested settings for Kristin’s camera keeping her abreast of how the pictures were looking on the computer screen. Extremely talented guys!
Libby Callaway was the stylist for the shoot and she did a fantastic job. Many of clothes and jewelry pieces will become part of Holly’s stage wardrobe so it was important that Libby capture and enhance Holly’s vision. Styling is the foundation and probably the most important part of every shot.
Megan Thompson- Fitchuck was the make-up/hair artist for the shoot. I was blown away by how quickly Megan’s artistry transformed Holly’s look for each individual setting. It was interesting watching how quickly Megan would change Holly’s hair style. She gave incredible attention to detail with Holly’s make-up and hair throughout the shoot. A great hair/make-up artist can prevent the necessity for a lot of costly touch-up work to the final photos.
My main take away from Holly’s photo shoot was how important every person on the team is to the final product. I now have a much better understanding of those budgets that I always thought were a bit crazy. A great photo shoot takes more than one person with a camera. It takes a team!
What photo shoot tips do you have to share?