Insider tips

How to Pose for Photos – 6 Tips for Beginners

Here are 6 easy tips to remember for doing your first few photoshoots.  Simplicity is best. Don’t build up the session and over-practice in the beginning. An experienced photographer will give you some direction while letting you move naturally into poses that feel comfortable for you with only slight tweaks.  The most important thing to remember is to be confident. This will show and even amplify on camera.

  1. Avoid the Deer-in-the-Headlights Look: You may initially feel anxious as you embark on your first shoot. Beginners don’t know what to expect. Fear shows in the eyes first. So, try to avoid the scared look and soften your eyes. One good way to combat this is to squint your eyes until you begin to feel more relaxed. Your eyes will eventually relax as well.
  2. Move: Try not to get stuck in a pose for more than 3 seconds. A good photoshoot is like a flowing dance between you and the photographer. The truth is, the photographer will be capturing your transitions as well as your poses. Let them do their magic as you do yours. Move constantly and slightly, moving the angles of your head, shoulders, hips and shift your weight. Don’t forget to change your facial expression as well. Many new models produce photoshoots with the same default facial expression throughout the whole shoot. Let your photos show you in a variety of emotions and poses.
  3. Hand Placement: Keep in mind what you’re doing with your hands at all times. When you’re a beginner, your hands may be tense and this will show in photos as well. Awkward, stiff hands can ruin a photo when looking back at the details. If you’re holding onto something, like a necklace or jacket, make sure you are doing this gracefully and softly.
  4. Posture: Mother was right. And she still is. Make sure you have good posture to produce a model-like silhouette. This is one of the most important tenants of modeling.
  5. Asymmetrical Poses: Symmetrical poses are ok but often not that interesting. Include a few asymmetrical poses as well, as this looks more creative and artistic on camera.
  6. Don’t Always Look Straight Into the Camera: (There is an exception if you’re doing a photoshoot for your initial headshots or composite cards. Head-on angles are best for presenting yourself to a Casting Director in that case because they need to see your face clearly.) Otherwise, for an interesting shoot, looking away makes the viewer wonder “What is the model looking at? What is he or she thinking about?” It doesn’t need to be dramatic and far off into the distance – it can be slightly off camera.

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