How to Create a Photography Shot List [10+ Best Examples]


Regardless of the type of photography you are working on—for example, travel photography, wedding photography, wildlife photography, and fashion photography—you need to set everything first and ensure that you will know exactly where and when you will be taking the shot so you can flag any potential issues. This can be done with the use of a photography shot list templates or simply a checklist of the shots that you are planning to take. So, whether you are an amateur or professional photographer, a shot list will surely help you manage your time more effectively. Here are some templates and examples that you may refer to as well as a short guide on how to create a photography shot list.

How to Create a Photography Shot List

To ensure that you cover off everything that you want to shoot on the venue on that day, it is important that you create a shot list that provides you a detailed checklist of the scenario or angle that you want to take. This would also help you in preparing and packing only the necessary things for the shoot. Below are simple steps on how to create a photography shot list:

1. Research the location.

Before you start gathering ideas on what to include in your shot list, it is better that you research the location not only to map out the best shots and angles but also to utilize the things and views around the location.

2. Get inspiration.

After you have seen the venue, you might already have scenes in mind. Keep these scenes in your mind first, and look for some inspirations for your shots. Depending on the type of photography that you will be shooting, research for some professional photos and how they are captured.

3. Write down the shots that randomly come to your mind.

Then, list all the shots that come to your mind even without the proper sequence.

4. Categorize the shots.

Now that you have listed different shots, you must categorize them according to the following:

  • Detail shots: These shots capture small details of a product, event, or person, or product, great for capturing specific characteristics or items; for example, shots of the invitation at a wedding and the bag a model is wearing in a commercial shoot.
  • Close-ups: In this type of shot, it tightly frames an object or person, focusing on the subject rather than the background, which is a great way to shoot products and portraits.
  • Wide shots: Also known as full shots, wide shots show an entire object or person and the surroundings, which is used to provide context.
  • Posed shots: A posed shot refers to a shot of people who are oriented or arranged for the image. It is often used in portrait and events.
  • Candid Shots: The subject in a candid shot is unaware that the photo is being captured, resulting in a shot with a very natural feel. Hence, this is a great way to capture lifelike photos.

5. List the people or objects involved.

It is important that you list down the people or objects that will be involved in your shot for that specific angle so you can get them prepared beforehand.

6. Narrow down the list.

To narrow your long list of shots, exclude duplicate shots or those that are not appropriate for the narrative of the shoot.

7. Create a timeline.

In creating a timeline, you can use chart templates or you can simply list the schedule and venue of the shots that you will be taking for the day.

8. Present the shot list to the client.

Lastly, present the list to the client and make some revisions as necessary.

Photography Shot List Templates and Examples

1. Simple Photography Shot List

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File Format
  • Google Docs
  • Editable PDF
  • MS Word
  • Pages

Size: A4 & US

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Make sure that you are not missing any important shots through the use of this simple photography shot list. It is easy for you to edit the list and include only the ones that are important for the type of photography that you are working. This is easy to download and is available in different file formats, such as Google Docs, editable PDF, MS Word, and Pages.

2. Professional Photography Shot List

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File Format
  • PDF

Size: 431.3 KB

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If you want to take shots similar to those shots taken by professional photographers, this professional photography shot list is perfect for you. It details all the shots you need to take, including shots for site access and security, illumination, furniture and fixture, personnel, and landscaping and surroundings.

3. Photography Guidelines and Shot List

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File Format
  • PDF

Size: 240 KB

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Contained in this example are photography guidelines and important shot lists which includes the creative considerations you need to take before photographing, how to get started, what strategy works and what does not, technical considerations, photo submissions, and a creative checklist.

4. Basic Photography Shot List

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File Format
  • PDF

Size: 151.1 KB

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In this basic photography shot list example, provided are blank spaces where you write your shots and their respective details whether they are are taken inside or outside, the type of shot (detail, close-up, wide, candid, or posed), camera angle, camera move, audio, and brief description.

5. Blank Photography Shot List

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  • PDF

Size: 172.2 KB

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Be organized with your shots with the use of this blank photography shot list where you can write the scene, location, framing, camera POV, camera and lighting instructions, and action or dialog. This can also be used for shooting a clip or movie.

6. Generic Photography Shot List

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File Format
  • PDF

Size: 86.4 KB

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In this example, the user is free to add all the details of the shot. In the first column, you can write the shot number; the second column is for the subject; and the third column is a space for your shot description, including the angle, type of shot, and movements of the camera.

7. Video Project Photography Shot List

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File Format
  • PDF

Size: 282.7 KB

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This is an example of a very detailed but concise description of the scene and angles presented in a video project photography shot list. Basically, it details the how to take a B-roll shot; interviews with the principal, state representative, sponsor, and mentor; and team cheers.

8. Production Photography Shot List

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File Format
  • PDF

Size: 65.3 KB

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This template can be used for a production shot list. You can list down the type of shot, description, location, and cast. So the next time you are doing photography, you can refer to this shot list for your scenes and angles to be organized and systematized.

9. Film Television and New Media Shot Photography List

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File Format
  • PDF

Size: 256.1 KB

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This is a comprehensive document that provides particulars in taking a shot. It presents the context, task, preferred music, performance, narrative, audience, and environment, and it contains a blank shot list template as well as examples. The details of every shot is also included, such as the length of shot, visuals, and corresponding background music.

10. Organized Photography Shot List

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File Format
  • PDF

Size: 94.2 KB

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For a more effective shot list, it must be concise and direct such as this organized photography shot list template. You can write the shot number in the first column, scene number in the second, type of shot in the third, and a short, one-line description in the last column.

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