Find commercial photography studios in London
While it’s possible to take a great photograph anywhere, an attractive location can transform a well-executed picture into a remarkable one. Where you’re free to get creative with your fashion shoot, why not have fun with the location choice and hire a hotel rooftop terrace with a gorgeous cityscape? Or an eclectic Victorian-themed gin parlour?
Here at Tutti, we can guide you through finding the perfect London fashion photography locations for your needs and your budget.
Why choose a fashion photography location in London?
A unique backdrop and visually appealing props help you to tell a story, capture the viewer’s attention, and add dimension to your photos. And the good news is, some of the best fashion photography locations can be found across London.
Where else in the world would you have the option of shooting in an exquisite 18th Century art musuem, a derelict Victorian boiler room and a moored canal boat? You may even find the choice of spaces overwhelming at first, but that’s where our advanced search tools can help you select the most appropriate space for your fashion shoot.
How to plan for your fashion shoot before you hire a photography location
Develop a concept and storyboard
To achieve a certain look for your photos you’ll want to build a concept for your photoshoot. Especially if you are shooting an editorial or lifestyle spread where there’s a specific theme to convey.
The concept will drive all other creative and practical decisions for your fashion shoot. A great way to visualise it is to create a mood board, whether you use a physical board or a digital one on Pinterest.
A mood board usually consists of a stream-of-consciousness style portrayal of all the elements that you want to capture on the day of your shoot. It may include fashion pictures, landscapes, interior design or even just shades of colours that you want to incorporate. You can start researching by flicking through fashion magazines, searching online, or seeking inspiration from movies and music videos.
The next step is to develop a storyboard so you know what looks you will capture on the day. You’ll want to make this as detailed as possible to determine how many times each model will need to change outfits or touch up their hair and makeup, and plan out every shot you'll take in sequence. Managing a shoot can be a logistical challenge so this will help you get the most out of your allocated time.
Pick the right time of day
The time of day you shoot will affect the quality and the mood of your photographs. Often the best natural lighting is a couple of hours after sunrise and a couple of hours before sunset. These times are close to ‘golden hour’ when the sun is lowest in the sky, so shadows are softer, and the angles and length are more flattering.
Midday when the sun is high is great for reflective surfaces like windows and water because the light penetrates deeper and they appear more transparent. You can also play with the shadows created by your indoor setting, embracing them to add character and depth to your photos.
Establish your budget
Remember fashion shoots are a team effort, so not only does your budget need to cover the basic fee for location hire in London, but you’ll also need to factor in the rates for your models, clothing stylists, hair and makeup stylists, photographer, and potentially photography assistants if it’s a large production.
Other additional costs to consider include the hire of props, rates for going overtime, paid parking costs, and extra equipment rental.
Pick a location
Will you need to drive to the shoot? And, if so, does the venue come with a dedicated parking space? A location in central London may not be the right choice once you consider potential parking and traffic problems, but there are other fashion shoot locations to hire in zones 2-4 covering North, South, East and West London.
As you’ll be working with models and stylists you need to ensure everyone will be able to access the location. It’s a good idea to check public transport options such as nearby tube stations, and consider whether these will be available if you have an early start or late finish. You also might want to check out the local amenities for food and coffee options during your breaks.
Once you have all your details nailed down, send a call sheet around to everyone a couple of days in advance which will include the shoot date and start time, location address (including specific details like parking access), the responsibilities of each person, contact details, and schedule for the day. Ask each person to confirm they have received the call sheet so you know everyone has the correct information.
Choose the best equipment for your shoot
After nailing down your concept and your location, it’s essential you have the right type of equipment on your shoot day. You’ll want a good quality camera with good battery life and a selection of lenses to provide varied images.
An assortment of lights such as photo floodlights, tungsten-halogen lamps and incandescent lighting will allow you to capture your fashion subjects brilliantly. Many of these can be used in conjunction with a strobe or flash. You might also need a lightbox to diffuse light, a fill light to remove harsh shadows, and umbrella reflectors to bounce light onto your subject.
It’s also a good idea to put together a grip kit to help you prepare for and troubleshoot during the shoot. A kit can include clamps and tape to secure potentially hazardous backgrounds, cords, clothing and anything else, screwdrivers and pliers, plus cords for charging and connecting electronic devices and lighting batteries.
Checklist for hiring a fashion photography location
Do you require a parking space? Using Tutti’s advanced search tool you can filter the locations by free or paid parking to ensure you will have a carpark space available. Each listing also shows you the local transport options including the closest tube lines and bus routes.
What props do you need? Some fashion shoot location hire fees include props and it’s a good idea to check whether you can move these existing props around to use them in your shoot.
What lighting equipment do you need? Often basic lighting equipment like umbrellas and softboxes are included in the hire fee but if lights are chargeable, you’ll want to check how much they will cost so you can factor this into your budget.
How much space will you require? This will depend on how large your team is. As you’ll have at least one model and makeup/hair stylist, make sure there is a break area and a kitchen/refreshment-making facilities available, plus a changing room and enough hair & beauty stations for the number of stylists so they can work simultaneously.
What are your power requirements? Under general information on each location’s page listing, you can check whether single or three-phase power is available.