Give yourself props.
Before you commit to using photography props on your next shoot, take into consideration what type of photography you’re shooting. Baby photography props will be different from those you’ll need for a baby shower, let alone a wedding or magazine editorial, so plan accordingly. Think about the props you need and make a list of the items you require beforehand for a smooth shoot.
It can take a while to find all the props you’re looking for. “It’s not an overnight process,” says photographer Stacey Marsh. “You may end up with this huge stash of props, but that’s from year after year of collecting and not getting rid of anything.”
Always keep your eyes open for rare pieces that you could incorporate into your next shots. If your budget is limited, try secondhand or thrift shops to find items that can transform a good photoshoot into a great one. Or put on your DIY cap and create an object you need if it’s not available to you.
It’s best to start with things already around you. Friends and family are a good resource to help populate your collection.
Depending on the type of photography you shoot, the way you source your props will be different. Usually, the props for a baby photoshoot consist of baskets, blankets and other infant-related objects, with the expectation the photographer provides them. For pet photography, keep treats and favourite toys in your photography studio to either use as props or reward dogs and cats for sitting patiently in an antique chair.
For a fashion shoot, the objects and staging pieces — like an inherited romper or a vintage headband — are brought onto the set by the model to add a personal flair. Or, if your subject is an art blogger, they might bring paint, brushes, easels or anything else that highlights their connection to the fine arts and gives viewers more insight into their personality.