This week I thought I’d give you guys an inside look into a 1960s Photoshoot we organized last Sunday, in a small living room. Yes, you read it right, we really did shoot all the photos in a small 8 square-meter room! I’ll give you guys more details about this below, but first please do have a look at a short time-lapse video I put together from the shoot:

1960s Photoshoot Makeup, Hair and Styling

Okay! I’ll go through the shoot step-by-step, explaining all that we did, starting from makeup, hair & styling (this part was written by Elina Nikitin, my makeup-artist/hairdresser/stylist):

As a makeup-artist it was easy to get inspired by this subject. 1960s Photoshoot style is always very impressive and interesting, and I doubt it will ever go out of fashion. The style is, above all, very feminine and even slightly sexy.

The main-focus of the makeup is in the eyes, that were styled in a fashion typical for the 1960’s: strong black eyeliner, bushy false lashes, and a dark shadowing in the eyelid furrow. I also applied a large amount of mascara to the lower eyelashes and left the lips nude and matte, as this was often done in the 60’s.

The 1960s Photoshoot “spirit” can also be seen in the hairstyle, which was inspired by the beehive updo, made famous by Audrey Hepburn and Birgitte Bardot. Both the makeup and hair were created in a slightly contemporary style. The same “contemporary 60’s”-style was applied into the clothing also. The slimline dress and colorful stockings were typical in the 60s, but have now also become very fashionable during this autumn.”

How to Photograph a 1960s Photoshoot

Once we got our beautiful model ready, it was time for me to take charge and start taking photographs. Our goal was to create a four-photo series (I actually forgot to add the fourth photo in the end of the video, sorry about that! :D), in which all the photos would have a similar color scheme, and elegant/minimalist compositions.

We started off the 1960s Photoshoot by taking this photograph:

I don’t own a ring flash or a beauty dish, but I still wanted to create a very even looking soft light and decided to place two soft boxes on either side of the subject and had a reflector filling in the shadows in her neck. Here is the lighting diagram:

I also wanted to keep all the focus in our model’s gorgeous eyes and opted for a very shallow depth-of-field for this 1960s Photoshoot. The camera-settings looked like this:

Camera: Canon 5D Mark II
Lens: Canon 85mm f/1.8
ISO: 100
Aperture: f/1.8
Shutter: 1/160

The post-processing was pretty much the same in all of the four photographs and thus I’ll go through the editing with the help of the second photo in the series. Here is a collage that shows four main-edits that I made for this photo:

Photo number 1 is the image straight out of the camera. To get to point 4 – the final image – I did some slight skin smoothing, dodging & burning. I lightened up the shadows behind the model (on the wall) and did some color-correcting with curves. To finish off, I sharpened the eyes and the lips ever so slightly and applied a grunge texture on the wall.

The third and fourth photo in this 1960s Photoshoot had very similar lighting:

This is what I call the “sandwich set-up”. The model is placed between two soft boxes and both strobes are fired with the same amount of power. And as I stated earlier, the post-processing was very similar in these as well. Some slight skin smoothing, dodging and burning, and color-work. And as the finishing touch, I applied the texture, again.

This all just goes to show that you really do not need a professional studio, with expensive equipment to shoot good photographs. Sure, good studio equipment and space does make working easier and in the long-run you’ll want to invest in that sort-of stuff, but in the beginning, it’s totally possible to start off with studio photography at your own house/apartment! Just use your creativity and imagination and you’ll most likely figure out a way to do it!


To finish off this article I just have to take a moment to thank Elina Nikitin and Anniina Lahti for helping me out with this 1960s Photoshoot. Elina was the amazing wizard behind the makeup, hair and styling/clothing and Anniina was a great model, and it was a blast working with her! Also, Elina was kind enough to let us organize this shoot in her own apartment! Thank you!! :D