How To Make a Fashion Photography Portfolio

Model and photographer

The most effective way to display a collection of your best work as a fashion photographer is through a fashion photography portfolio. Your portfolio should show your prospective clients how serious you are in fashion and glamour photography. It should showcase your expertise, skill, versatility and quality of your work in print.

It is suggested that you create a photo portfolio that you can carry with you during presentations and an uploaded version on a website that your clients can view anytime. For a fashion photography portfolio, your collection should focus on high resolution and high quality photos taken of models and people in a variety of clothes and accessories.

To create your portfolio, do the following:

  1. Build a collection of photos taken in photo shoots for designers, fashion houses, publications or magazines and fashion shows. Collect as many photos as you can of not just colored, but black and white images as well. Try to be as creative and unique in taking your images as can be. If you feel the need to improve the quality of your photos, refresh your skills through photography tutorials.
  2. Spread out your collection of fashion, glamour and even portrait photography. Choose several photographs that you see as your best pictures from your collection. Look at your photos' uniquenesses that stand out in a sea of other photographs. Look at the creativity in your shots, your outstanding use of colors, lights, and framing.
  3. For your photography portfolio, cut down your selection to your best 20 to 30 photographs. Choose the photos that you feel best represent you and showcase your talent. If your photos from fashion shows, portrait photography or other sources have been published, it is recommended that these shots are included in your portfolio. Your published photos are the best proof of your work recognized by the media.
  4. Think of how you would like your photographs presented. Consider that the quality of your presentation is as important as the quality of your photos presented. The attention and care put into the presentation of your portfolio will reflect the dedication you have for your craft and your personality as well. Use quality materials even if they may be expensive.
  5. For your hand carry portfolio: Organize your selected photos in a folder. Use a decent looking three-ring folder. Preferably laminate your best fashion photographs. Think of a theme, and sequence your photo arrangement in a manner that can best impress the people who will look at your work in glamour photography and as a fashion photographer.
  6. Create your own online portfolio. Upload your portfolio to a gallery online. If you are on a budget, you may upload your photos to a free online gallery. If you can afford to spend more, hire a web designer to make you a professional looking website. Having an online portfolio will provide you more exposure than a portfolio that you just carry around during presentations.
  7. Choose an elegant yet simple theme that you can use for your online portfolio. Avoid bright colors or a busy background that will take away your viewer's attention from your photos. Use black and white images against a neutral background to highlight its contrast and lighting effects.
  8. Before finalizing your portfolio, ask some amateurs and professionals to critique what you have created. Gather feedback to determine if you have presented yourself well as a fashion photographer. Consider your target audience and the purpose why you want to create your portfolio. If you need to update your photography techniques, practice, attend more photography tutorials or formally enroll in photography classes.


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