Freelancer Rachel Vogeleisen is a breath of fresh air. 

A professional portrait photographer specialising in female portraiture, black and white boudoir photography and professional headshot photography, Rachel uses her conceptual portraiture as a tool to help women feel empowered and confident.

In this piece, we learn about Rachel’s career to date, how she uses her work to instill confidence in her female subjects and why collaborating with freelancers has been integral to her work to date.  


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Shooting With Purpose 

We love encountering new Freelancer Club members like Rachel, who hold a really impactful purpose at the heart of their work. 

Being the subject of a photo can be rather unnerving for some individuals. However, Rachel’s ethos is all about making her subjects, and in particular her female subjects, feel at ease and confident in front of a camera.  

“I really enjoy helping women find their zone of brilliance and get confident in front of the camera. My mission is to make them look amazing in front of the camera.”

An awesome mission, right?

Like her portraits, Rachel is also passionate about working with brands to help them tell their stories in order to assist them in growing their customer base. 

“I love working with personal brands to help them tell a great visual story and to create images that will help them engage and connect with their ideal audience.

I recently worked with a very boisterous and fun owner of a dessert company to create images for her brand. We worked all day to create amazing images for her brand from styled food shoots, to working with models to feature the experience, to her fun and vibrant portraits.”

It’s safe to say that Rachel provides her clients with a versatile and well-rounded photography service that affords them the opportunity to present their offerings and their team in an engaging and creative way.

More of this please!


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Collaborating for Success

Like lots of our members, Rachel has done collaboration shoots with fellow creatives to help her develop and progress her career.

“I couldn’t do what I do without a great team behind me, make-up artists and hair stylist are paramount to what I do. I would love to do more fashion editorials and work with stylists as well.” 

A newcomer to Freelancer Club, Rachel organised a test shoot just last week with fellow Freelancer Club member, hair stylist and makeup artist Siew Gratton

“I did a test shoot this Wednesday 3rd November with Siew Gratton, a makeup artist I found on the Freelancers’ Club.”

“We shot three models with various looks, make-up and hairstyles. Siew did an amazing job with the models. I couldn’t have done this shoot without her.”

Test shoots enable freelancers to connect and try out new creative ideas which is exactly what Rachel and Siew did during their test shoot. The two creatives married their respective skill sets to create looks that they were really happy with. 


The Power of a Strong Portfolio 

When we asked Rachel about the importance of having a strong portfolio, her response was so on point and accurate that we couldn’t wait to share it with our readers:

“The portfolio is your first port of call, it's like your shop window and we all know that we only have seven seconds to make a first great impression.”

If there was ever a better reason to get cracking on updating your portfolio, this is it!



food on table. how to build a freelance portfolio, professional headshot photography, collaboration shoot


Test Shooting? Go for it! 

Although she’s collaborated with other creatives before, Rachel, like lots of freelancers, stills uses test shoots to push herself out of her comfort zone. 

For example, on her test shoot last week, Rachel shot models from an agency, an experience that  she described as being “completely out of my comfort zone”.

See? Even experienced freelancers like Rachel get nervous about different aspects of their work and test shoots from time to time. It’s normal.

Her advice for newbies to test shoots? Just go for it!

“I would say just go for it. The most difficult thing is to take the first step. What I have understood is that no one will come knocking on your door and say we want to work with you. You have to go out there, meet-up, attend an event, collaborate with fellow freelancers, and showcase your work.”

“You will knock on a lot of doors before someone says welcome! Just keep trying and challenge yourself. We all have to get out of our comfort zone to move forward, but this will also build your confidence and bring you great opportunities.”

What’s left to say? 

Our top tip on how to build a freelance portfolio is to post a test shoot here or join some else’s here


We hope that you’ve gleaned some really useful advice and insights from Rachel’s career and collaborations to date. 

If you’re tempted to undertake a collaboration shoot (test shoot), simply do what Rachel recommends and ‘go for it’! 

As the old saying goes, ‘if you never try, you’ll never know’ and this is absolutely apt for any creative who is currently sitting on the fence, pondering whether or not test shooting is for them.

Looking for a fantastic photographer? Check out Rachel’s Freelancer Club profile/portfolio and her website. Also bear in mind that Rachel’s is keen to do more fashion editorials and to work with stylists as well!  


Wondering how to build a freelance portfolio? Find yourself a collaboration shoot (test shoot) to get involved in and have a read of Our Essential Test Shoot Guide.
So you’ve booked Rachel for a professional headshot photography session, a fashion or boudoir shoot. Now need to find a makeup artist or hairstylist? Get in contact with Siew Gratton or check out our full list of creatives here.