If you’re reading this you probably enjoy photography either from behind the camera or as the talent and are looking to improve your skills… (Tips are at the end of the blog post)
I’ve read a few posts lately from people talking about how they enjoy getting their pictures taken and dressing up for them etc but they are unsure how to pose for their pictures. This is something I also struggle with.
Now, I don’t like having my pictures taken but I do enjoy taking photos of others and I always want to do the best I can in helping my subject feel comfortable and confident. Part of that comes from taking flattering pictures (using both posing and camera framing) and showing them some of the pictures during the shooting process.
If you’re like me you’ve examined photo after photo that the masters have taken. You may even like to compare their early work to what they’re doing now 20-30 years later. It’s certainly helpful because you can then compare/contrast what you’re doing and see where improvements should be made. You look at those recent pictures and say “what exactly are they doing and why does it work?” picking apart every little detail.
If you’re like me, you’ve probably also gone to Pinterest and saved pin after pin of posingcharts. You might even keep them on your phone for quick reference or try to memorize them so that your photo sessions go more quickly. But memorizing lists of poses is difficult especially since there are multiple elements to each pose.
What I find to me more helpful (while experimenting to learn my own “go-to” poses) is to think about what the goal is and how to accomplish that. There’s fewer elements to consider so it’s easy to remember and they can be incorporated into other poses later on.
Here’s what to think about…
Slimming your face: Push your face/forehead slightly forward to avoid a double chin. You can also lean your torso forward a little if you like. This is especially flattering for guys as it extenuates their broad shoulders. Just remember less is more here.
Creating a smaller waist: this will depend on whether you’re male or female as you can hopefully tell from my poor illustrations…
Obviously no body looks good from the side.
Men look best facing straight on because you can see the full breadth of their shoulders. Regardless of whether they have a “dad-bod” or not their narrower hips and wider shoulders will nearly always create the best silhouette here.
Our hips are almost as wide as our shoulders and this just makes us look wide all over. Instead, stand at an angle. You’ll have curves but not a full tummy bulge.
Another tip for the ladies is to place your hand above your hip (just below your bust at the thinnest part) it will draw the focus above your hips, define a new “waist line” and make you look thinner. This feels odd but trust me, its worth it.
Toning your arms: this has two parts. 1) leave space between your arm and your body to avoid smushing it and making it look fat; 2) find an excuse to bend your elbow a little (kind of like flexing)
Note: that space between the body and the arm ALSO makes you look a little thinner 😉
When walking: pretend you’re on a tightrope when walking placing one foot directly in front of the other. I don’t know why this looks great but hey, if it works it works!
If you found these useful or would like to contribute tips of your own let me know in the comments!