Photoshoots in the time of Covid19
Getting used to the “New Normal”
It’s been Phase II here for a few weeks now, and I’ve gained a lot of experience being back on set in the time of Covid 19. From food photoshoots, too interior architecture, too portraits, working in the new normal requires commercial photographers to adapt to a few style or working.
Firstly Prep. The amount of prep work required before a shoot has doubles. Firstly applies and shoot plans need to taken into consideration. All suppliers must pass screening. Screen involves safety questions and a temperature reading. Even before screen is equipment perp. All gear gets sanitized as it’s packed into their bags. Stands, tripods, modifiers, cameras, cables, everything gets cleaned. From there once the gear is packed it’s quarantined. It goes untouched for at least 24 hours before the shoot.
The largest factor that we have to get used to is wearing the proper PPE. Which means masks, and gloves for everything on set. The subjects of portraits get to take off a mask while their photo is being taken, but that’s about it. It doesn’t been like a big deal, but after wearing masks for 12 hours shoots on a hot summer day it can take it’s toll.
Even, perhaps unspoken, the emotional complexity it takes to get back to set. We all have lived in fear for the past four months, and now we’re back to work. Everyone has had anxiety leading up to this. Once back on a photoshoot the feeling of familiarity that remains is comforting. We are back doing what we are meant to be doing.
Lastly we have to understand that trust plays a large factor in proceeding with a shoot. Having conversations with suppliers and clients before the photoshoot will help us understand how seriously everyone has taken this pandemic. The more trust we have on set the more comfortable everyone is. Trust helps balance out the fear, and it’s something we’ve never had to deal with before.
It’s worth getting used to. Getting back to work is a critical part Ontario’s plan to recover economically. Photographers, assistants, and hair and makeup artists don’t work in this industry because it’s easy. We work in it because we’re passionate about the photographs we create. I’m a strong believer that in this time, those who can adapt safely will overcome.