Why You Should Incorporate Storyboarding into Your Photography Sessions

Today, we’re uncovering the storyboarding secret every photographer needs. Storyboarding in photography is a must! It’s about enhancing client satisfaction, fostering creativity, and optimizing efficiency.

So what is storyboarding? 

It’s creating a visual representation of the look and feel of a photoshoot.  It’s like an inspiration board and a visual breakdown of the photoshoot:

  • the shots you want to get
  • the specific poses you want to do
  • the wardrobe
  • the overall aesthetic you want to capture.

It’s like a blueprint of the photoshoot.  Have you ever created one? For me, storyboarding allows me to have a plan or a guide.  Sometimes I venture off the plan a little but having one to help me accomplish the look and feel of a photoshoot is key. Let’s go through some tips to help you storyboard for your next photoshoot.

Tip #1: Enhance Client Experience

Explore the process of storyboarding and conceptualizing senior portrait sessions, including how to plan themes, props, and creative concepts to make each session unique. Storyboarding isn’t just about planning out poses and locations; it’s about creating a narrative for each senior portrait session that resonates with your clients.

By taking the time to explore the process of storyboarding and conceptualizing sessions, you’re not only ensuring that each session is unique but also ensuring that your clients feel truly valued and involved in the process. From planning themes to selecting props and brainstorming creative concepts, storyboarding allows you to craft a session that reflects your client’s personality and vision. By discussing the storyline and vision with your clients beforehand, you’re not only setting expectations but also building trust and rapport, making for a smoother and more enjoyable experience overall.

It’s also a great way to take your senior portrait experience to the next level.  First, work with you client to find out their vision for the shoot. Then, create a storyboard that represents that vision. When you give it to the client, they will feel like you truly get them. Your photos will capture them exactly how they want to be captured for their senior photos!

Tip #2: Boost Creativity

Let’s talk about how storyboarding can ignite your creativity and take your photography to the next level. Storyboarding isn’t just a planning tool; it’s a creative process that encourages you to think outside the box and explore new concepts and themes. It serves as a roadmap for your creativity, guiding you through different scenes, poses, and props to capture the perfect shots.

If you listened to last week’s episode where I gave five tips on avoiding burnout, one of my tips was to do photoshoots just for you.  These photoshoots allow you to embrace your creativity and reignite your passion for photography.  For these photoshoots that are just for you, the sky is the limit with what you can do.  By creating a storyboard for your vision, you can truly accomplish what you want.  

For example, I just did a country themed photoshoot with one of my senior models. I created a storyboard for the photoshoot.  It allowed me to truly get the most out of this photoshoot because I had a blueprint for exactly the look and feel of what I had in my head. By incorporating storytelling elements into your sessions, you’re not just taking photos; you’re crafting visual stories that evoke emotion and captivate your audience.  From capturing candid moments to orchestrating elaborate setups, storyboarding allows you to push the boundaries of your creativity and create images that stand out from the crowd.

Tip #3: Streamline Workflow

Let’s explore how storyboarding can help streamline your workflow and make your photography sessions more efficient and stress-free. Planning ahead with storyboarding allows you to have a clear plan in place, ensuring that you’re prepared for every aspect of the session.

From scouting locations to coordinating outfits and props, storyboarding helps you anticipate potential challenges and plan accordingly. This saves you time and reduces stress on the day of the shoot. With a well-thought-out storyboard, you can focus on capturing moments rather than worrying about what to do next. This results in more natural and authentic images.

Additionally, storyboarding allows you to communicate your vision more effectively with your team or assistants. Everyone is on the same page and working towards a common goal. By streamlining your workflow with storyboarding, you can create a more enjoyable experience for both yourself and your clients. This ultimately leading to better results.

How To Create Storyboarding in Photography

Now that you have heard why creating a storyboard is great, let’s talk about how to create one.

Step 1 – Determine the vision for your photoshoot

If this is a senior session with a client, ask them their vision first.  I do this in both the senior questionnaire as well as during the in-person consultation.  It is important to listen to their vision, ask questions to clarify and then create a storyboard based on what they say. 

For model team photoshoots, it is also a great idea to ask your models for their input!  I know a model team is used to help you market your business so some photographers feel like it should be all about what they want the shoots to be and I get that, but you also have to remember the models and creating a good experience for them so they organically market your business.  Part of making it  great experience is to truly value their opinion and include them in the discussion especially when it comes to the vision for photoshoots.  My models always have great ideas that I didn’t even think of so it opens my eyes to what teens really want.  So create a storyboard for a model team photoshoot based on ideas from your model. 

And if it is a creative shoot just for you, then ask yourself what is my vision for this photoshoot?  What do i want to accomplish with this photoshoot?  And create a storyboard around that.

Step 2 – Look for inspiration

I use Pinterest, fashion magazines, ads, movies, tv shows and more!  Finding images that speak to your vision will help you start to create the storyboard.  Remember to use these images for inspiration not to copy.  You want to include photos that included pose inspiration, mood inspiration, color palette, props, locations and even music to help you fully visualize the photoshoot.

Step 3 – Create the storyboard

I use a mixture of photos as well as lists to completely plan out the vision for my shoots.  This helps me and the subject fully understand the photoshoot goal.  My favorite tools for creating my storyboard are Pinterest and Photoshop plus I have a shoot planning form I use as well.  I give both clients and models this storyboard so everyone is on the same page as well as take it with me to a photoshoot to refer to and make sure I am getting all I wanted out of the photoshoot!

Why You Should Incorporate Storyboarding in Photography Sessions

By enhancing the client experience, boosting creativity, and streamlining your workflow, storyboarding can elevate your photography sessions to new heights.

Now, it’s time to take action. Reflect on how you currently approach your photography sessions – are there areas where storyboarding could enhance your process and outcomes?

Take the initiative to integrate this powerful tool into your workflow and watch as it transforms your sessions and client satisfaction.

Why You Should Incorporate Storyboarding into Your Photography Sessions

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