The Art of the Spa Photo Shoot

2 different spa facial photos
Courtesy Larry Oskin

Human Focal Points

It’s helpful to capture images featuring people—this allows viewers to place themselves into your spa experience. But should you hire a model, or use attractive clients or friends? Either works. “There is no rule that says you have to use professional models,” contends Trent. “But don’t forget that beauty is an aspiration of every spa customer.”

Not everyone agrees. “We believe it is ideal to use professional models because they can be easily directed and are comfortable in front of the camera,” Reed offers. “However, if you don’t have the budget to hire talent, then of course use friends or family. Just know that in these cases, the photographer will need to spend more time directing and helping subjects feel comfortable, as well as coaching them to achieve the emotion you are trying to convey through your images.”

If you opt to go the DIY model route, Oskin suggests creating a spa promotion by generating buzz around your model search. “Put up `Models Wanted!’ posters and fliers in your facility and on community bulletin boards,” he says. “You can also post ‘Day Spa Models Needed’ want ads on ModelMayhem.com or on Craigslist—if you’re willing to swap spa services for free models.” (For more on hiring and working with models, check out Picture-Perfect Models on dayspamagazine.com.)

Post-Shoot Pointers

Consider hiring a great website designer to showcase your dazzling new photography! “Make sure your website design and your photos share a clear, consistent branding message,” Reed says. “It pays to go with the best quality you can possibly afford on both of these.”

Keep in mind that popular social media platforms like Facebook and Pinterest are creating an increasingly visual world online—there are now more places than ever to show off your spa shots. “Your photography and design today becomes the face of your company tomorrow,” Reed notes.

Carrie Borzillo is a freelancer writer and author based in Los Angeles.


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