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  • Writer's pictureRachel Z

Finding the Perfect Photo Location

Updated: Nov 26, 2023

One man sitting and one man standing with instruments on a concrete structure surrounded by water
Photo by Rachel Z Photography at Sutro Baths, San Francisco, Ca

Hey it’s Rachel with Rachel Z Photography and congrats. We’ve booked your brand photo shoot! We’ve had our discovery call, you’ve filled out your brand questionnaire, and we have a date on the calendar. We’re off to a great start, and now we must decide - where will we shoot?! Location is one of the most important elements to planning for your brand photos. The location is our backdrop, the foundation for creating the vibe, for telling your brand story. We have to get this right. I certainly have my suggestions, but really the decision comes down to what feels right for you and your brand. Let’s look at the key steps to finding the perfect photo location.

Your Work Space

This is as authentic as it gets folks. Where do you ACTUALLY make the magic happen? You do not have to have an HGTV ready space in order for us to have a successful shoot. Think about all the places you work - studio, workshop, living room couch, office desk, your kids’ playroom floor. Make a list of all your potential workspaces and we can narrow down the most photogenic and relevant from there.


Infinite possibilities. A well-manicured park will NOT be the place for everyone’s photos. But this is a great way to subtly incorporate key elements. Do you operate your biz out of the city? Let’s brainstorm potential city backdrops without being in-your-face about it. Are “organic” and “natural” words you use to describe your brand vibe? Maybe we use soft textures in front of an old barn. Those are two COMPLETELY different stories, just by changing location.

Rented Space

I love this option. This may take a little more investigation, but so worth it. If you are a food blogger and need a gorgeous kitchen as your backdrop (but your kids and messy kitchen at home make it impossible to shoot there) this is it. These spaces come photo ready, are easy to book, and have a vast range of options if you know what you are going for. This will require a rental fee, but it makes planning for our shoot so easy, I think it’s worth every penny and then some. We don’t want to spend half the day setting up, breaking down, and rearranging. Keep it simple and effective with a turnkey option.

Above all, our location needs to speak to your brand. It needs to be consistent with the look and feel you are going for. This requires some brainstorming together, but is actually a really fun part of the process. The right location makes wardrobe, prop and shot list planning so much easier.

About Rachel Z Photography

I’m a 29-year-old San Francisco-based photographer, activist, tattoo enthusiast, and guardian of 2 lovely rescued birds. I adore doing portrait photography for others, whether that’s indoors or outdoors, covered in flowers and nature or covered in fake blood. My goal with my photography is to empower you by taking the essence of who you are and turning it into works of art. I want to hear what YOUR ideas are and help make them into a reality. I want you to feel powerful. I want you to feel beautiful. I want you to feel confident, because we all deserve that.

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