Before Shot- Styling, Lighting, Props & Equipment…


The styling for this shoot is going to be quite simple, yet affective. As I am going to style my client in a way that makes it obvious what she’s about. As I have the attribute Barbie doll, I picture that as someone who likes to look after themselves, strives to look perfect, love the colour pink and diamonds, your very typical, blonde bimbo girly girl.

After looking into how some Barbie dolls are dressed and presented I noticed some key elements that stood out, that related to the idea I had in mind for my before shot. One being the colour pink, two involving a small dog, and three looking like they like to look after themselves and look good. After looking into Barbie dolls, I took it upon myself to start finding outfits and accessories I could use to style my client in their before scenario.

I looked online for outfits I could order, and that would come in time and I had luck finding suitable things quite easily. I decided that I was going to style the shoot myself as I was confident enough to do so, and I didn’t have enough time to source a proper stylist. I did ask a few people but it was very short notice and some people didn’t reply. So I had no choice but to take matters into my own hands. I browsed online and finally came to a decision on an outfit I was going to get my model to wear…

I decided on getting my model to wear a pink PU/Vinyl material outfit as to me that screams plastic and a barbie doll is made out of all plastic. The shade of pink is very girly and I feel would work well for a ‘barbie doll’ bimbo look. I also chose a tight fitting outfit to show that she loves herself, her body and can rock anything she wears, especially if its pink. I got the silver choker as an extra accessory to ‘bling’ her up. I noticed some of the barbie dolls wearing silver jewellery and thought it would add an element of glam to the look. I feel that the pink hair scrunchies will add a cute, girly vibe to the outfit and completes the look. Having the models hair half up and half down tied with a pink scunchie is very girly and glam.

As for the makeup, I also wanted it to stick within the pink, girly theme. I wanted it to be over the top and look glamorous. To show that my barbie doll character puts a lot of effort into how she looks and shows that she clearly takes pride. I instantly thought of getting make inspiration from one of my favourite celebrities, Alaska 5000. She is a drag queen from the shoe Ru Paul’s drag race, and she always reminds me of a drag version of a barbie doll. Alaska is often seen in pink with very girly glamorous makeup. I found some images of some makeup I will take inspiration from and apply to my models barbie doll look.

Props & Equipment-

For the props in this before shot I wanted to use things that really help tell the story of my client. I want to make my clients attributes clear through the use of small props. The styling will get the barbie doll aspect through, so I am going to try and get the dog groomer aspect through with props such as a dog brush, clippers, scissors, shampoo and more importantly a dog. I want to paint a picture of her being a dog lover as well as a dog groomer and get a dog involved in the picture. Preferably a small, bag sized dog to show the stereotypical barbie doll, girly girl look. Kind of like Paris Hilton, clutching a small dog. I want to use the grooming props to make it obvious what she does for a day job, as that is the only thing I can really rely on to show that. I want to have my model holding the equipment and pretending to clipper the dogs. I have some of these props at home that I can use on the day of the shoot, so I know I won’t have any issues sourcing them.

I asked my model Paige if I could use her small dog that she showed me when she sent me an image and she said that was perfectly fine, so I had all my prop elements sorted. The only other prop I needed to finish off telling my story was a location, and Paige also said I could shoot and film at her house, so it was all good to go.


To light my image, I want to keep it quite a simple set up but have it quite bright. I want to have it bright to show the bright pink colours in the makeup and clothing and to also highlight the texture in the dogs fur. A lot of the lighting will be made up of natural lighting when photographing it at Paige’s house, having been to her house before, I know where the windows are situated and where gives us the best lighting. I want to keep the set up quite simple so it is easier for me to transport equipment to and from the location. Below are some examples of how I am going to light my before shot…


Below is an equipment list I have made for all the things I am going to need to photograph my before shot. Creating this list will allow me to figure out every thing I need and also make sure I don’t forget anything on the shoot day…

  • Canon camera
  • 24-70mm lens
  • SD cards
  • Spare camera battery
  • Portable flash (either flash kit or speedlite)
  • Pink vinyl top
  • Pink vinyl skirt
  • Pink scrunchie
  • Silver choker
  • Small dog
  • Dog clippers
  • Dog brush
  • Moodboards

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