Posing Tips For Photoshoots: My Philosophy
I wanted to share a bit of my philosophy about posing tips for photoshoots. Over the years of my career as a photographer I’ve worked hard to provide my clients with as much knowledge and direction as I possibly can within each shoot. I work with a wide range of people so it’s important that I’m able to direct individuals and get the best shots out of them within our photoshoot time.
I used to be really controlling with posing, I studied the work of a few master portrait photographers and really thought I could pose my clients down to their pinky finger, as Sue Bryce taught. However the more I started shooting fashion and commercial lifestyle work I realized that I can capture someone way better in a moment rather than directing them into a pose. Now don’t get me wrong, I will still totally direct someone into a set pose but I make sure we don’t sit there for too long or else the shot will look stiff and awkward. I also believe that there is a beautiful strength for photographers who are able to pose their subjects… it is just not for me.
I’ve always been a fan of movement. In college I was a dancer but my main passion was choreography. I choreographed pieces for dance concerts at my school, taught contemporary dance classes at a few studios and even created my own little dance company that performed around Tampa, Fl - we even made it on TV on Telemundo! So I’ve had the directorial spirit within me for a while.
When I was living in Maryland, other photographers in the area used to tell me that I was “the posing guru” and would talk me up to others about how good I am with posing. That is a great compliment from my colleagues however I always felt so awkward with that. In my head I was never fully satisfied with how I did my posing. Because for me, I always loved capturing moments and movement, so when someone expected me to tell them how exactly to move every part of their body down to their pinky - it got me stuck into this posing box. It also created these high expectations that I could direct someone into looking like they’ve lost an insane amount of weight. Yes; I can direct you to looking really flattering in photos with angles but I’m not
The more I started shooting fashion, the more I realized how much I loved capturing movement and moments of my clients and subjects. I think that the magic really happens when there is movement and interaction on set. This stems from my dance background and my early work with dancers and wedding photography.
I got some great feedback on my work from my friend Katie Willcox, owner of Natural Models LA who told me to have the girls move around more and do something different. Once I heard that I was completely ready to change up how I posed my subjects!
My philosophy on posing tips for photoshoots is simple: MOVE! If you want to be a model you need to get to know your body - and don’t be afraid of it! Understand the angles and shapes that your body makes. Study your face and expressions in your mirror. Practice moving and showing different emotions and get comfortable with moving around! This is for ANYONE not just someone who is a model or pursuing a modeling career.
There are many jobs now that are a mix of videos and stills. There are GIFs and cinemagraphs and moving images and stop motion and many ways content creators are fusing video and still photography together. Becoming a good mover is a talent and skill that will help you book and rebook clients.
If you aren't a model and just want to look confident and comfortable in your photoshoots you can still take this advice and start moving. Even if you are playing model for a day, you can also look like you're a rockstar in your photoshoot!