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Should Photographers Work with Models?

Should Photographers Work with Models? | Tracy Lynn Coaching | see more at

Why EVERY Boudoir Photographer Needs to Work with Models

Are you in a new client slump? Maybe you’re attracting leads at a steady pace, but you’re not necessarily getting a rush of potential clients who are super excited to book you. If that’s the case, my friend, I’ll let you in on a secret that some photographers know. 

I’m gonna tell you why you should be working with local photography models and why it’ll benefit your boudoir business.

Reason #1: You’ll learn what works for shooting clients.

One of the best parts about photographing models is how much you will learn. And it’s a lot, trust me. This is a hugely underrated reason for working with models!

Think about what models do for a living and what they know. They know how to move their bodies from head to toe. They know what their best angles are. And they know how to take direction from photographers, like giving certain facial expressions, creating curves, or highlighting certain features for different body types.

Basically, you’re learning (and practicing) the best way to shoot your clients

When I was still learning how to photograph boudoir, I booked 40 models in one year. I practiced so much that when it came time to shoot clients, everything was second nature to me, from shooting to giving direction and more.

You’ll learn things you don’t expect to, either. Like new poses to try out — or new outfit ideas! I shot a fashion blogger once and she always brought in the best, more original outfits. And now they’re some of my go-to outfit suggestions for clients.

Reason #2: You get scroll-stopping images that’ll attract clients.

Every model you work with gives you new images you can use to market your boudoir studio and bring in new clients. Let me be clear, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with sharing images of past clients! People love to see them. 

But you need images that are scroll-stopping. Images that’ll make potential clients stop in their tracks and say, “Wow. I want that photographer to photograph me.” 

Experienced models will give you more usable content to work with because they’re so knowledgeable about posing and creating images that make an impact! And trust me, this content will absolutely catch the eye of your ideal clients.

Reason #3: You’ll connect with other biz owners.

One more reason to work with photography models? You’ll connect with other business owners in your area. Especially if your models are business owners themselves.

Here’s an example. There are three St. Louis models I photograph pretty regularly, who are fitness coaches in different areas of the city. Photographing them has helped me book more clients for two reasons:

  1. We create eye-catching, exciting images that get shared on social media to a bigger audience…which leads to more inquiries and bookings.
  2. The models are sending their clients to me so they can experience what I offer.

Connecting with local business owners will help you promote your own business, of course, but it’ll also help you meet your ideal clients nearby. That’s an essential part of finding quality leads who don’t ghost you.

Tips for finding photography models on Instagram

Speaking of Instagram, you can use this social media tool to find and work with photography models near you. It’s one of the best ways to find models in your area, and it’s the strategy I prefer myself.


Play around with local hashtags that will get your eyes on potential models in your community. For example, I like the hashtag “STLfit” because I find fitness models in the St. Louis area. When the results pop up, I search through the images and see if I want to photograph anyone. If an image has a location tagged, I scope out the location and business profile, too.


As you browse through Instagram, take a closer look at anyone who catches your eye. What do you like about them? What could you learn from this model? Maybe it’s their facial expression, their angles, how they pose in a certain environment, or the clothes they wear.

I also check out each potential model’s following to see if there are models you’d want to reach out to, plus potential clients. If their following is promising, then that’s a good sign!

When you begin reaching out to potential models, keep in mind that they’ll usually be TFP, or “trade for photos.” Back in the day, the acronym meant “trade for print,” but it’s 2023 now, so it just means photos. Some models may try to charge you, but there are lots of models out there who are willing to work for free in exchange for those photos (and a little cross-promotion, too).

Work with photography models and bring in your ideal clients!

Why is working with photography models so great for your boudoir business? 

First, you’ll learn so much about yourself as a photographer and how to make your clients look their best in their photos. Second, you’ll grow your portfolio and fill it with stunning, attention-grabbing images. And third, you’ll make valuable connections in your community.

Spend some time on Instagram finding models you want to work with! And if you wanna see what I mean about scroll-stopping images, make sure you’re following my Insta @boudoir_by_tracy_lynn. For more boudoir business tips, follow @itstracylynn!


Tracy Lynn is a boudoir photogapher for brides-to-be in the St. Louis area, and a mentor + coach for photographers looking to level up their businesses with better systems and processes.

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