Updated: May 13, 2021
Today lets talk modeling and what the differences are between paying for a session, a TFP session, and a Paid Session.
Up first, what does Paying for a session with a photographer mean. Anytime you reach out to a photographer with an idea or they are offering a set, be prepared to pay!! Why? Because the photographer is not doing the shoot to creatively express themselves, they are at this point providing a service that you want. Why paying for a photo session, helps to protect you in the end!! You have final say over your images and who sees them. The photographer is not allowed to share your images for promotion or any general purpose unless permission is granted by the client (You). This is the safest of all options if you are worried about protecting your image and personal self.
What does TFP mean!! Okay, this can be a little complicated and vary from photographer to photographer. T(Time ) F (For) P (Print, Photos) is generally what TFP stands for. This shoot is arranged with zero money exchanged. When accepting a TFP session with a photographer, make sure to hash out all the details like, how many images you will receive, what you can and can't do with those images. (most photographers have a contract, ask to see this. I have one I use for new models). Make sure to ask what is expected out of you (Makeup, hair, wardrobe, ect), after all this is a creative collaboration between both the model and photographer. What is the plus side to TFP sessions? You get to work with new people and gain knowledge and experience of different styles. What is the downside? Images that you might not necessarily want out there representing you can be shared far and wide. This can hurt you in the future or immediately depending on how bad the images are. Most of the time, the photographer is more than willing to be understanding and respectful of you request an images to not be shared. Always do your research before agreeing to working with someone new!!
What is a Paid modeling session? This is when the photographer offers to pay you to model for them. Again make sure to read and ask for a contract, models should have there own contract at the ready in return. This is where you really need to hash out all the details on expectations. Is the photographer requesting nudes or fetish styles from you, are you comfortable with this style. By comfortable, I mean, would you be okay if your mother saw the images. "But I am getting paid?". Yes, money is always good, but remember that $100 can end up costing you in the end. Why? As much as I hate to admit it, 90% of photographers in our area are advance hobbyist at best (raises hand cause I'm guilty). They don't have large corporations throwing money at them for fashion shoots, they are generally willing to pay to get something that most won't offer for free from other models. Now let's talk about the end product, once you are done with the session and get that pay, that's it. That's the end, you may never see your images, the photographers does not need to send you images. The images can show up anywhere (this is where the contract comes into play). For Example, look at Marilyn Monroes leaked images, the images were from earlier in her career when she did the shoot for the money. While this is now an Iconic Taboo of the times, this was detrimental to her at the time. While money can make you Holla, think about the true cost in the end.