Monday, March 29, 2010


I will be adding many posts on testing this is my first one

Open up the dialog with the photographer.
I keep hearing “DeShawn the photographer didn’t listen to me, or the photographer shot it this way but I really needed a beauty shot.” The photographer isn’t omnipotent they don’t rule the test but they are not mind readers either. Testing is suppose to be a collaboration. Ahhhhhh but there’s always exceptions: if you’ve agreed to do the photographer a favor, i.e., the shoot is about his/her concept and you say okay, or you are called in as a replacement or you simply sit there like a mute and just blindly follow--then that is on you. I’ve worked with phenomenal photographers when I first started who wanted to hear what my contribution would be, what I envision for the shoot—even if its not what they were looking for they still asked. That is what I want for all of you. A photographer who wants to hear what you have to offer and need. Even if this is your very first shoot there should be discussion. Why? How in the world will you get out of the shoot what YOU need. When you’re looking for photographers to test with remember it should be a partnership (with everyone-hair, makeup styling and photographer.) Having a dialog with all on set is essential for you getting that great final picture. If you don’t have a dialog with the photographer how will you know about their lighting, positioning of shots, and yes their vision as well. You must speak up!!!!!!! I do not mean walk into set diva-all-mighty, no one wants that, but be prepared to offer your concept and be able to collaborate with all on set. I don’t mean to sound like a broken record, opps, sorry dating myself, a scratched CD. Open your mouths people!!!!!
Testing is a collaboration


  1. As a fashion/beauty photographer, I must say that Deshawn really hit the mark with this blog. As I tell many MUAs that ask about testing, the 1st priority is to make sure the photographer is a communicator. REMEMBER testing is a collaboration where it is assumed most parties are of equal skill level. That means the MUA has the right to contribute to the concept, add input after the initial test shots (in order to clean up makeup, change it or add to it), etc.

    MUAs and fashion industry ppl in general, you will have more than your share of time working on "diva" sets that you must make your test shoots fun and relaxing yet productive. You can only be productive when you feel comfortable and when you can communicate freely. You have that RIGHT. Use it or move onto the next capable photographer.

    That's my truth for today!

    ~~Ajani Truth

  2. ABSO-freakin-LUTELY. *sigh* D, you said you posted a write up on this and I'm so glad you did. Keep posting on this. People need to hear this. SMH.

    You KNOW personally that this has been a sore spot for me lately. I want to keep testing but because of the lack of "collaborative spirits", I end up literally becoming turned off, so I took a hiatus. Saved the energy and re-directed it towards finding work. Hence why you, or anyone else for that matter, hasn't seen very much of my new work posted any where.

    As a freelance professional makeup artist, testing is a true source of excitement for me. I'm an artist at the end of the day, but when you peep my work, can anyone really tell? Mmmm, dunno. That's why it's about time to get at it again. Posting this now, couldn't have been at a better time. MERCI BEACOUP woman, I needed the validation and boost.

    FYI: Truss. I will repost this where EVA it's necessary. Shoooo. SMH. lol



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