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NYC photographer adventures | 6. Model photoshoot in New Jersey

Updated: Jun 18, 2023

The day of my first fashion photoshoot during our New York trip had finally come, also meaning that the anxiety was gradually being replaced by excitement. I had prepared a lot for this session, as I was going to shoot several sets from the collection of a talented Hungarian fashion designer, Natália Gyulai in the US. For the first project a really extravagant, reflective jacket awaited my lovely model, Galiya.

Fashion photography abroad is a russian roulette

Organizing a model photoshoot abroad is like solving a multivariable equation. The only constant in it was me, myself and I, everything else was completely unpredictable. Shooting at unknown locations, with unknown models, on behalf of a Hungarian client who will not be there with me in person to give immediate feedback, yet I have to deliver perfect results that she likes. Now that's what you call a challenge. The uncertainties were paralyzing me at first and even imagining having control was hard. Questions and doubts kept running through my mind over and over again. What if the location won’t be as epic as I thought it would be? What if the model doesn't show up or doesn't look good in the NATI 100% PUREIDEA dress she's supposed to wear?

Be prepared for the unexpected

Before the trip, I naively thought that I would be able to prepare for international photography projects from home, but in hindsight, I have to say that without improvisation, I would have totally failed. Fortunately, the first fashion photoshoot seemed promising thanks to Galiya's agility, we had a lot of preliminary discussions and somehow we managed to get in tune with each other virtually, so I hoped for the best. Of course, everything couldn't be picture perfect, as it was cloudy all day and the sunlight would have been crucial for the reflective jacket commercial shoot, but at least we managed to avoid getting soaked to the skin.

New Jersey, the photographers’ paradise

Norbert and I arrived at the location which this time wasn't New York itself but the coast of New Jersey, with a stunning view of Manhattan. Galiya also popped up at our meeting point, although she could barely smile with her crystal-encrusted mouth, she revealed her kind soul in a fraction of a second. Our photographer colleague Victoria Farkas joined us on the way, so we got down to work. I used the M.Zuiko 17mm f/1.2 PRO and 45mm f/1.2 PRO lenses to make the most of both the impressive location and the character of the model. We got so into creation that we eventually entered a no go zone. But never mind, finally these photos turned out to be our favorite ones, so our motto worked out: anything for a great shot!

Fashion photoshooting for NATI 100% PUREIDEA with Galiya in New Jersey (Shot on Olympus E-M10 Mark III with Olympus M.ZUIKO DIGITAL 17mm f/1.2 PRO and 45mm f/1.2 PRO)

Just go with the flow

After the advertising photos were captured, we continued with a few sets that Galiya brought just for the joy of creation. We returned to her car, because that was the only place she could change her clothes, and honestly we got stuck here for a few shots, as somehow Victoria and I got inspired by the atmosphere, so we couldn’t resist the temptation. Finally, our last stop was a nearby playground. The parents’ (not only dads’) face expression was priceless as Galiya posed in a very sexy military style set. What’s more, Norbi even shot a behind the scenes video of us. I think we caused a bit of a stir, but it didn't put me off at all, in fact it felt liberating.

Sexy lady in soldier outfit posing in the park at a photoshooting
Modell photoshooting with Galiya in New Jersey (Shot on Olympus E-M10 Mark III with Olympus M.ZUIKO DIGITAL 17mm f/1.2 PRO and 45mm f/1.2 PRO)

No time to waste, let’s retouch on the subway!

The portfolio shoot was an experience beyond expectations also meaning a huge relief for me. I was starting to catch the New York vibes, even if it was only my first model photography session. It was exhausting to be on our feet all day, but the adrenaline was stronger and we were already on the subway on the way home to start post-production on the photos and video. In America, the pace is fast and with so much competition between the many talents working in New York, there is no time for slacking. If anywhere, the saying is doubly true here: If you're left behind, you're left out!

If you're interested in reading similar New York photographer (and personal) stories, below you can dive into the previously published episodes! More coming along your way soon! :)


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