The main thing to keep in mind when it comes to posing and shoot time is that no model is in front of the camera the entire time. So even if you're scheduled for a shoot that lasts 4-8 hours, you're not going to be posing for 4-8 hours straight--that would just be insanity!
Additionally, each pose does not have to be dramatically different from the others. Below is a basic breakdown of the time structure that most photoshoots follow. Please keep in mind that not all shoots are the same so the information below is only to be used for reference...there are always exceptions to the rule but for now this will suffice for models of all skill levels:
- Hair & Makeup: 1 - 2 hours
- Wardrobe/Fitting/Changing: varies on how simple or difficult each outfit is to put on in between changes but you can expect this part of the process to take up between 10-15 minutes each time.
- Waiting for the Photographer/Crew to Set Things Up: 20 minutes or longer for each change in location or outfit (remember my saying, "Hurry up and wait?" Well, it definitely comes into play when the photographer and/or the crew are setting up lights, doing test shoots, changing out equipment, etc.).
- Actual Shoot Time: varies but anywhere from 10-15 minutes at a time.
As far as worrying about coming up with various poses to do when you are shooting, the key thing to remember is that you don't have to create an entirely different pose each time the photographer snaps a photo. Of course all of the poses aren't supposed to look the same but what I'm saying is that you can easily create multiple poses by changing little things while holding an existing pose.
For example, let's say you're standing up with your legs posed a certain way and your arms are crossed in front of you. Here are some subtle changes you can make without having to do a totally different pose but still create mini poses at the same time:
- Look straight at the camera and smile
- Look straight at the camera and don't smile
- Keep your face looking straight at the camera but your eyes are looking somewhere else while smiling
- Keep your face looking straight at the camera but your eyes are looking in a different place and this time you're not smiling
- Turn your face to a 3/4 angle
- Tilt your head slightly to the left
- Tilt your head slightly to the right
With time and practice, any model will eventually become comfortable with how shoots work and won't have any problem coming up with suitable poses to get the money shot.