Friday, February 03, 2012

What photo models should know about computer file formats?

Thinking about why photo models should care about and know some things about computer file formats might not be a question that pops up right away. Issue is however that if a model wants to promote herself (or himself for that matter) especially in the beginning of her carrier it can she is not yet surrounded by a complete team of photographers and agencies who will help her. And it is in this period of a models career that promotion is key to success. Yearly thousands and thousands of young people like to become a model and agencies try to select the best of those thousands of young want to be models however to be able to be selected you have to be seen.

As an upcoming model you will have to go to castings and you will try to promote your pictures at model agencies by simply sending them out and hoping for the best. All these actions are quite good to undertake and still very up to date and valid however as an upcoming model you have to stand out and have to try and become noticed by the right people in all ways possible.

Possibly you, as a model, have created a portfolio and shared this on a website you have created or have asked someone to build for you. You might have sent people your pictures from your portfolio for example your friends, your family or your coworkers. Next time you do this it is good to do two things; (A) ask them to spread the pictures and post them on Facebook for example, and (B) make sure that the person who has taken the pictures has included proper EXIF format information.

EXIF information is “hidden” information in the picture file which includes for example information about the type of camera and the settings of the camera at the moment the picture was taken. However, besides information about the camera it can hold a lot more information. For example it can hold the geographical information of where the photo was taken, possibly not that much of interest to you as a model. What it also can hold is information in text on the name of the photographer, the possible copyright on the photo and free text where you can describe who the lovely person is that is on the picture, and that will be you and so it will be of interest to you.

So why is it important to have your name in a hidden EXIF format which nobody can even watch without doing some tech things? Secondly why do you need to do this as this picture is on your website and everybody can read there who you are? Well, take as an example the girl in the picture below. from the picture alone we can see that she is a girl and that there is the Acura logo in the back. If you see the original website where this is posted (flickr.com) you can read some more information about this girl, the person who has taken the picture and the setting. However posted on my weblog all this information is lost. As soon as the picture is removed from the original location is taken out of the context of the website. So if it would be you on that picture this would mean that as soon as you are placed on another website nobody knows who the person is in the picture.


The same is the case when someone downloads the picture and posts it on Facebook. Daily large number of pictures are downloaded somewhere form a website and uploaded to Facebook. For example someone could download the Acura logo girl and post on the website because he likes Acura, likes the girl who is on the picture or any other kind of reason. As soon as she is posted on Facebook nobody knows who she is and what the story behind her is. So if this was you and somebody from a model agency would like to know who the girl on the picture is to ask her for a shoot they would not know who to contact as there is no additional information. Now let’s say you add EXIF information to your picture and someone you send your picture to or who have downloaded it from your website posts it to Facebook. In this situation the EXIF information will be noticed by Facebook and will be used in the description of the picture. Meaning, you can dictate up to a certain level what the description of the picture will be when someone uploads it to Facebook. So it can be very beneficial to add your name and contact details for example to the EXIF information so everyone uploading your picture will automatically share your name and for example your website. Below you can see the Acura girl uploaded to Facebook in a situation where the EXIF information is added to the picture.


So, how do you get EXIF information in your images? You can download one of the many EXIF information editors or you could ask the photographer to add it for you. Most professionals will have something like Adobe PhotoShop installed on their machine and Adobe has added a great working EXIF editor to their product. When you check the file information from Adobe Photoshop you can edit the EXIF information. Below you can see an example of the EXIF information in photoshop I have edited on the


In this article where I have stated a photo model you can also read upcoming photographers or upcoming graphical designers. These persons also need to promote themselves and find a space in a crowded space full of enthusiastic and sometimes talented people where they have to stand out of the crowd to be seen.
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