How to Guide: Posing for Great Photos

How to Guide Posing for Great Photos
Say Cheese…… Oh no. It’s that moment you always dread. Someone wants to take a picture of you, and you feel oh-so uncomfortable. That’s okay, Daily Mom to the rescue! Some people are just naturals when it comes to taking great photos, while others feel awkward and unsure. Read on to find out how you (yes, you!) can pose for great photos.

A perfect photo will depend on many factors such as, lighting, hair, makeup, and how well you move in front of the camera. We are going to teach you some great posing techniques that you can keep in mind for the next time you find yourself in a photo opportunity. Like anything, there are things you should do, and things you shouldn’t do.

What you should  do:


    • Wear a beautiful outfit. If you know there are going to be photos taken, don’t be afraid to glam it up a bit. Add a pair of heels! This will help with your posing and improve your posture.
    • If there is just one thing you should remember, it is to be NATURAL. The more natural you look, the better your photo will turn out. You can achieve a more natural look by just being loose and relaxing. Avoid any tension in your body and watch out for over-posing.
    • Be aware of your body. Before every photo take a brief moment to check out your pose.
    • Change your pose. If there are multiple photos being taken, move around for every shot. There is nothing worse than ten of the exact same photos. The goal is to have a variety to choose from.
    • Check out your angles. Like many others, you may prefer one side of your body over the other. Get to know your body and find out which parts you love.
Taking self portraits of yourself is a great way to try different poses at home. All you need is a camera and a tripod!
  • Check your posture. This is super important. Standing tall comes off as confidence. Have a look at this great article on Better Posture by Women’s Health. Something as avoidable as bad posture can ruin a great photo.
  • Fake it ’til you make it. Nobody but you has to know you are uncomfortable taking photos. If you LOOK like you know what you’re doing and you look super confident, we can assure you, people are going think you are a pro.

What you shouldn’t do:


  • Cut off your limbs: A common mistake people make when taking a photo is to accidentally make it as if their limbs have disappeared. Be very conscious of this because that can make or break a good photo.
  • Be half in the shade and half in the sun: If you are outside, you should either be fully in the sun or fully in the shade, if possible.
  • Be completely straight on to the camera: Angles and curves makes a photo so much more interesting. Always angle your body or face slightly off camera.
  • Panic if the photo is not being taken quickly enough: We understand it can be uncomfortable to hold a pose, but if its taking a while, just count to ten (in your head, of course), take a breath and hold that smile.
  • Slouch: Stand up tall and find that inner confidence you know you have.
  • The claw: When placing your hands on your hips, or anywhere for that matter, be sure do it attractively. Make sure you hand is not in the claw shape. Your hand should be flat on your hips, with your fingers stretched out long and looking dainty.

Alright, now that you are a pro on what to do, lets work on the logistics of your posing! Posing may be hard for you and may make you feel uncomfortable, but once you get the hang of it, you will be so happy with the results.

Follow these guidelines:


 

  1. Space is important to remember. A little space between your arms and your body will make a huge difference.  A lot of people think their arms look bigger in photos than in real life. If you leave space this will separate your arms from your body making them appear thinner. Let’s be honest, who doesn’t want that? Try putting your hand on your hip to create that 90 degree angle. Space between your legs is just as important.  With your legs, you can cross them, but be sure to leave space between your feet.
  2. Look around. Keep in mind that just because you are getting your photo taken, doesn’t mean you need to always be looking directly at the camera. Play with those eyes and have them look around but try to stay somewhat close to the camera.
  3. Give that body some shape. Adding a bit of “bend” to your body will make your photo appear more visually interesting. Try crossing your arms and sticking out a hip, or raising one shoulder slightly higher than the other.
  4. Keep the 3/4 rule in mind. For photos, it is better to have your body on an angle as opposed to straight on to the camera. This will make your shape look much more flattering. You may even want to try going profile and turning only your head to camera.
  5. Work your legs. Try the “Pigeon Toe Pose.” Place both feet on the ground (legs straight) and ever so slightly turn the tips of your toes in. Next try the “Walking Pose.” Put one foot in front of the other as if you were going to take a step. While you’re at it, give the “Dainty Feet Pose” a shot. Keep your legs straight, and turn your right knee inward, while pushing your(right) toe away from your other foot, keeping it slightly off the ground. 
  6. Use your accessories. If you are wearing any accessories, use them.  Try throwing a hand in your pocket or a thumb in your belt loop. If you are wearing a hat or sunglasses, or carrying a great bag, play with them a little. You can do a ton of fun things.
  7. Tilt your head ever so slightly, to give yourself a more interesting angle.

Make sure to check out this post on Getting Started in Self Portraiture.

We want nothing more than to give our readers the confidence to take a fabulous photo. Practicing at home is a great idea and will get you comfortable in front of the camera. It will also help you to get to know your body better. Who doesn’t want to be comfortable taking a photo? Follow these tips and you will rock those photos! Keep in mind: when you are getting your photo taken, don’t forget to smile and think pleasant thoughts.

If you liked this guide on posing, stayed tuned for a post on looking great in your photos. To keep updated, make sure to subscribe to our newsletter.

Photo Credits: Lauren Hardy

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Lauren Hardy

Lauren is a new mom living in Toronto, Canada. When she is not at home being a mom, she is working full time as a model, playing competitive baseball, and working on her personal blog. In her "spare" time, Lauren is aspiring to become a childbirth educator. You can find her at Lauren Hardy Blog

Comments (2)

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    Monika

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    This article was so useful! Great advice. Thanks for the tips! Very helpful and loved the attention to detail and all the photos to help guide . Xo

    Reply

    • Avatar

      Lauren Hardy

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      Hi Monika, glad you found this so helpful. Make sure you stay tuned for part 2 of this post: How to look great in photos!

      Reply

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