NEW YORK CITY (SBG) - Some jobs have easily translated to the home, allowing for a seamless transition into remote employment. But for portrait and fashion photographers, whose work typically requires them to be on-site with at least one other person, a bit more innovation has been needed to make the switch. Luckily, those in the profession usually have more than enough creativity to go around, and they haven't let the constraints of quarantine and social distancing get in the way of a good photo. Instead, they've connecting with models over video chat to direct shoots from afar.
As you'd expect, the photos are definitely grainier than those captured with a digital camera, but photographers are viewing the reduction in clarity not as a limitation but rather as a defining quality of this newfound method. There's also a certain level of intimacy acquired by working one-on-one with a model from within their home, as well as a degree of rawness as a result of the more stripped-down environment.
Virtual photoshoots may have arisen out of a place of necessity, but as the medium has challenged photographers to consider fresh perspectives in their work and produced results unlike those that could be achieved with traditional and more expensive equipment, could it have lasting value even once stay-at-home orders are lifted? The pictures captured via FaceTime, Zoom, and other video call platforms have their own unique aesthetic that is currently emblematic of the times but may have its place in the art and fashion worlds for years to come.
This photo shows that you don't need the most high-tech camera to get beautiful results. "Those fancy cameras are only tools for photography. The rest is in your mind," wrote the photographer in the caption.
London-based photographer Thea Baddiley has been conducting her shoots via FaceTime. She often shares behind-the-scenes looks at the process on her Instagram stories.
Unable to conduct in-person shoots, Italian fashion photographer Alessio Albi took his work virtual instead, and the outcomes of his webcam shoots have been incredible to see.
These FaceTime photos by Akshay Tambe are positively dreamy.
Although the quality of FaceTime photoshoots may not be as sharp as that of a digital camera, this French photographer's artistic eye for finding the perfect lighting and composition is as clear as ever.
"I’m thankful for the creativity everyone is bringing to these FaceTime shoots," wrote photographer Svetlana Blasucci.
The right props can add a lot to a FaceTime photoshoot, as demonstrated by photographer Rafa Lima.
Wedding photographer Tim Dunk is trying to raise money for the Trussell Trust foodbank charity with his FaceTime photoshoots. Interested? You can book a session with him on his website.
Getting creative with camera angles is another way to make your FaceTime photography stand out. The photographer reassured her followers that they didn't drop the phone in the tub.
Color makes a huge impact in these photos, from the model's makeup to the bright blue surroundings.
Fashion photographer Mafalda Boavida also used makeup in a unique way to add more visual interest to these photos.
"Get inspired, create, recreate, invent, but understand that: we cannot stop," wrote photographer Nickmans Gabriel of the importance of shooting over FaceTime.
Zoom has even more uses than you may have thought, as proven by photographer Diana Semichasnova in this gorgeous series.
This FaceTime photoshoot would fit right in on the pages of a fashion magazine.
Photographer Taras Taraporvala admitted in an Instagram comment that virtual photoshoots are a "bizarre trend," but his gorgeous results are undeniable.
Sephi Bergerson is utilizing FaceTime photography to create portraits of people in lockdown as a way of documenting this strange time. This particular photo shows a fashion blogger who got stuck visiting her family in Tehran.
The work hasn't stopped for Josie Musgrave; the New York-based photographer has been as creative as ever during quarantine.
Since the beginning of quarantine, Elizaveta Porodina has been working on a project called "The Big Q." "It's a search for new words in our artistic languages," she said of the project.
Ba?rbara Montan?a missed her friends during quarantine, so she invited them to participate in photoshoots over video chat.
"This is a unique opportunity to create in a different way. Let's take advantage of it; let's grow with this," wrote Malena Altamirano of the virtual photoshoot experience.
FaceTime photography has very much reached the mainstream during quarantine; even celebrities like Bella Hadid and Demi Lovato have participated in virtual shoots. Photographer Brianna Capozzi, who conducted the shoot with Hadid for Vogue Italia alongside stylist Haley Wollens, saw clear benefits to working virtually, as she described to Women's Wear Daily. Namely, there were far fewer distractions involved compared to those that would be present on a typical set, which helped Capozzi to achieve her exact vision.
With publications like Vogue Italia, i-D, and Bustle utilizing FaceTime and other video software in this way, it's clear that the world is responding well to virtually-captured imagery in the absence of in-person shoots. Only time will tell if the medium is here to stay even after digital cameras make their triumphant return to the modeling industry.