There are a lot more variable when looking at outdoor locations for your brand shoot, but if you do it right, it can totally be worth the trouble. The options are so varied - let's just discuss a few of them here! Maybe I will write a second installment of this post one day!
I'm gonna go ahead and mention a few pros & cons that apply to all of these. First, I love outdoor light. We can achieve so many different looks with it, and it can be so flattering! However, we are at the mercy of the weather. There's always a chance we'll get to the day of the shoot and it will rain, or be too windy to shoot or even just have too much cloud coverage and flat light. If we're shooting outside, we will have a backup date on the books.
Also, in this area, the vegetation is really only pretty during the warm (or straight up hot!) months. There are outdoor options that don't have to include trees and flowers, but if you want that, we'll have to shoot when it's warm.
Option No. 1: Public Parks
I've shot in a whole lotta parks over the years! We have a ton of them to choose from here, and there are so many pros. For one, they're free or very cheap. Huge plus if you're starting out or you just need a quick refresh on your content catalog! In Central Texas, we have city, county and state parks with beautiful oak trees, creeks, hill country views, pretty trails...if your brand is outdoorsy, we've got you covered!
There are definitely some parks that don't get too crowded or at least have quiet spots. But some of the more popular ones can really have a lot of people! It can slow the shoot down a little bit waiting for people to move out of the background or even make a beautiful spot unusable.
Option No. 2: Public Gardens
We don't have a ton of these in our area, but there are a few and they can be great places to shoot! My favorites have lots of pretty spots to shoot. There tend to be arbors, pretty benches, flowered pathways and sometimes even tree swings. They typically have a little more variety in backgrounds than a park.
These pretty much all have an admission fee, but it'll be in the $10-$20 range. Also, a couple of the ones I like to use open mid-morning and close before sunset. So some of the prettiest light won't be available to us. But there's lot of open shade, and we can make that really pretty, too!
Option No. 3 - Your own property (or a friend's!)
If your porch or yard is lovely or you own a farm or something - we should definitely shoot there! It's easy for you to set up any specific shots you want ahead of time since you're always there, and no one else will have photos just like yours! And if your friend happens to have a beautiful place, don't be scared to ask if you can shoot there! It's pretty common for shoots to take place at my clients' friends' places!
The only drawback here would be that you are getting yourself and your place ready for a shoot. But if you plan carefully, you can have the outdoor spaces ready before the day of your shoot, so that you can focus on your hair that morning!
Option No. 4 - Downtown
This is an option that is useable year round! In this area, you have the option of shooting in downtown Austin so you get an urban, high rise kind of look or using one of the smaller, cuter downtown areas in some of the suburbs! There are several really good options that have lots of small town charm - odds are there's one close to you. The best part of this option is the variety! If you bring a few different outfits, you can end up with photos that look like they are from different shoots. And we can pop into stores or coffee shops along the way for a whole different look.
Now about those outfits - probably the biggest drawback here is that you're doing all your getting ready in your car or in whatever public restroom we can find! Or, you know, behind a bush. This is not for everyone! Totally up to you! It can also be a little crowded, but not usually prohibitively so on a weekday during the day.
Option No. 5 - Vacation Rental or Swimply
Okay, so I actually included vacation rentals in my indoor options, too! But SO many of them have beautiful outdoor areas that I want you to consider them here, too! Be sure to include me in the choosing process so that I can weigh in on what will look good in photos, but goodness - there are so many options out there. There are beautiful porches and patios, pool areas, countryside settings - we can find something! Plus - you get to stay the night and enjoy that outdoor space outside of your shoot, too!
For summer content, think about checking out Swimply.com! It's a rental platform where you can find a pool in your area to rent by the hour! They are really affordable and perfect if you don't have your own pool. You may have to wade through kind of a lot of...not cute ones. But there are some really pretty options, too!
This is the only outdoor option with much of a price tag. But it's likely to only be a few hundred dollars, and that is not too bad when you consider your potential ROI.
I could go on and on about outdoor options! I will have to revisit this topic on another day, but these five are plenty to get you started!
Contact me to talk about your shoot and decide if an outdoor location is right for you!