Ep 93 Everything you need to know about working with photographers’ assistants or how to become one

photo-ep93-artworkOne of the best ways to learn more about the industry is to become a photographer’s assistant. This will fast-track your learning like nothing else. And when you do get more confidence, one thing that can take your photography to the next level is to actually hire an assistant – not just to help but to bring knowledge and flair to your photography. Yes, you read that correctly.

In this episode, Gina and Valerie discuss what you need to do if you want to work as an assistant, but also if you want to hire one.

#ginachallenge #thewindbeneathmywings

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Show notes

My new gear!
My new sigma 35mm lens $899 US vs Canon $1900

Manfrotto 410 Junior Geared Head

Canon Speedlite 600EX-RT

  • ST-E3-RT Speedlite Transmitter

What does a photographer’s assistant do?

  • Assisting a photographer in every facet of their work both on and off the set
  • Preproduction
  • Location scouting
  • Getting coffee
  • Backing up files
  • Organising gear/packing/hiring/driving models to the set
  • Post production and editing
  • Driving the gear truck
  • Pre-lighting and test shoots
  • Doing whatever is needed to ensure photo shoot runs smoothly

Should every photographer use one?

What about just using a mate and buying them a coffee after the shoot?

What makes a good assistant?

  • Good understanding of gear and lighting
  • Technical knowledge of post production
  • Good personality
  • Takes direction well
  • Enthusiastic
  • Professional
  • Team player
  • Pro-active
  • Hard working
  • Attention to detail
  • Discreet
  • Is there to make the photographer’s job easier and has their back

What do I look for in a good assistant?

  • All of the above + skills I may lack
  • Eg knowledge of new software/trends
  • Easy to get on with
  • Enthusiasm
  • Hard working
  • Shows initiative

Surefire ways to never get asked back

How to get a gig as an assistant

  • Email
  • Phone call
  • Email
  • Email
  • Rinse/repeat

List your skills
Pro photo
I have worked with x and x
Make great coffee
Love fiat 500s
Send your 5 best images ( low res)

Ken Proto Professional Assistant

Ken Proto is a professional Photographer’s Assistant based in Las Vegas. For the past 7 years he has helped professionals from around the world reach their business related goals in Sin City and abroad.

“I know this town inside and out and can help make your photo shoot or gig run much smoother. So, whether you’re in need of a Photo Assistant, Fixer, Vegas insight, or just need someone to hang out with on your shoot, feel free to contact me anytime at (702) 592-2021.”

Have other production needs in Vegas or the surrounding area? You do have to start somewhere, so it might as well be here. Let me know if I can help locate rental equipment, scout shooting locations, obtain permits or find rental studios, transportation, additional assistants, digital techs, hair/make-up artists, stylists, props, etc.

Ken has worked with

Andy Katz Photography
Ethan Pines Photography
Martin Schoeller
Todd Williams
Art Streiber
Me Ra Koh Photography Inc.
Scott McDermott
Jeff Kauck Photography
Marius Bugge
Duke Khodaverdian Photography
Brian Smith Pictures
Matthew Jordan Smith
James Tse Photo
Keith Barraclough Photography
Hedi Slimane
Markham Johnson Photography
Bruton Stroube Studios
Steven Kovich Photography
Dean Alexander
Edgar Martins Photography
Howard Huang
Biondo Productions
Christopher Kolk
Zach Dilgard
Jane Hilton
Kevin Zacher
David Zaitz Photography
Scott Lowden
Kevin Twomey Photography
Jeff Newton
Cristina Trayfors
Elke Van de Velde Inc.

#ginachallenge #thewindbeneathmywings


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Gina Milicia is one of the most widely known and respected photographers in Australia. She is the master of capturing that ‘magical moment’... READ MORE

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