Preparing for a Creative Shoot


May 9, 2024
5 min read

The successful execution of your concept relies on thorough preparation.


In the words of Albert Einstein, “Creativity is seeing what others see and thinking what no one has ever thought.”

When it comes to creativity, the possibilities are endless. Inspired by a God with boundless creativity, we’re constantly discovering new ways to express ourselves.

Preparing for a creative shoot isn’t just about planning – it’s about curating an experience. From assembling the right team to refining every visual aspect, the successful execution of your concept relies on thorough preparation.

Over the years, we’ve developed a process that works for us when it comes to preparing for creative shoots.

1. Select Your Pre-Production Team

Like any creative project, the best place to start is by building your team. Creative shoots involve a collaboration of skills, with individuals bringing their unique strengths to the table. As you begin planning your project, think through the roles that need to be filled and assign responsibilities. These people will guide the project from start to finish.

Some helpful roles include:

Creative Director

Film Director


Assistant Producer


Assistant Photographer

Behind the Scenes Content Capture



Set Assistant

Hair and Makeup

2. Find References and Build Your Mood Board

Once you have your team, start creating your mood board by collecting visual references. This is a space to ask good questions. What emotion do you want to evoke? What aesthetic are you aiming for? What story are you telling? 

There are two key elements to building a focused mood board:

Define your goal. What do you want the shoot to accomplish?

Define your visual language. What visual pieces will bring your goal to life? 

3. Source Your Location

Once you have your references and direction solidified, you can begin sourcing the right location. Environment is everything when it comes to curating a successful shoot. It could be a natural location like a park or the beach, or you can utilize a studio or set. 

The location plays a vital part in setting the tone for the shoot – it becomes the canvas for your talent to move and interact within. Lighting, composition, and ambiance all factor into the final results.

4. Source Your Talent

Once you have your references, you’ll need your main players. Your talent. The people who make the moment. Gather a team of talented individuals who can help bring your vision to life. This includes models, actors, photographers, hair and makeup artists, and stylists. Identify the specific skills and characteristics you're looking for that align with the mood and message of your shoot.

5. Build Your Storyline

Behind every shoot is a storyline that captivates the audience and moves them to action. If you are capturing static content, the storyline follows your visual language. If you’re shooting video content, the storyline is a map of the scenes or acts that the story requires. When it comes to creating a testimonial video, the storyline comes from the person you are documenting.

6. Define Styling and Set

The set creates the mold in which your talent will exist, and styling is what brings the story to life. Some things to consider as you prep your styling:


Color palette 




It’s helpful to consider what you plan to showcase in your shoot. Whether you’re shooting a specific product like merch or a video testimonial, the goal is for styling and set choices to complement and not distract.

7. Build a Pre-Production Sheet for Talent + Team 

Set your team and talent up for a win! Create a one-pager that houses all of the information your team needs to know. Include important details like location, call times, styling guides, and the shoot schedule.

Get help with the hard-to-answer questions.

Our team is here to answer your questions and provide advice and insight when you need it most.