If you are new to working with models, there is an acronym that you need need to know it is “TF” – it stands for “Time For” and is sometimes written as TFCD – Time for CD (of images) or TFP – Time for Prints or TFI – Time for Images, or just simply as TF*.

So what is a TF shoot?  A TF shoot is where both model and photographer agree to work together to create image for their respective portfolios.  It is a collaboration where both give time rather than there being an exchange of money.

There are some photographers who work almost exclusively on a TF basis, there are other who never work on the basis.

When I book a model for an event or workshop at the studio I pay the model. If I am making money from the event it is only fair that the model does too. There are several times when I will work on a TF* basis. If I am doing a ‘test shoot’ with a model I will do that on a TF* basis. For me test shoot are typically so that I can find out if I want to book that particular model for paid work. It might be a new model who has yet to establish a reputation, and by doing a test shoot with them I can find out what type of studio event the model is likely to be suitable for.

FG1212Z-Z00001Another sort of TF* shoot that have done is if I want to try out some photography techniques. A recent example of this is when I needed to test some strobist techniques ahead of a talk I was giving to camera club. Model Laura kindly agreed to be my guinea-pig – we agreed half the shoot we would spend on my lighting tests and half the shoot I would spend shooting material for her portfolio. You can see the results of the shoot here: http://photos.imb.biz/model/shoot/lauratest.  As a direct result of that test shoot I booked Laura for an event at my studio: http://www.ians-studio.co.uk/events/all-you-need-are-strobes/

One common question from photographers who are doing their first TF* shoots is what must I supply.  The answer is whatever you agree with your model.  Some photographers supply everything, others just a few fully edited images.  In my case I supply the model with copies of all the images I do any work on – most of which will have my first pass edits done to them.  I may select one or two images to do full edits on.  This appears to be acceptable to the models I have worked with.  I also let the models know that if there are a handful of images (ie up to 5 or 6) that they like but would like additional editing doing to them I am happy to do that.  I very rarely get requests from models for that additional editing so from that I guess that they are happy with what I have supplied.

I hope this brief overview of TF* shoots is helpful.  If you are in the NW UK and looking for models to collaborate with on TF* shoots you might want to take a look at the North West TFP Meetup Group.