I have had all kinds of issues over the years since I have been photographing with clients of trying to pose and position them to look good during a photo shoot. Well, with today’s blog post I am wanting to help you out, with my years (and continues practice) of mistakes of posing individuals/ your clients during a photo shoot and them turning out amazing. I am using a recent client of mines images from her professional head shot photo shoot, which she is an amazing photographer herself! Check her out her amazing work at Taylor Dixon Photography or connect with her on Facebook or Instagram!
In today’s post I have acquired 15 photographic posing points that will hopefully help you on your next big or small shoot with any potential client!
- Posing Stool Height – Normally should be at about knee height. If you want to add weight to a subject, lower the stool. If you wish to decrease the apparent weight, raise the stool. If stool is raised to it maximum a heavy set person will have to lean and reach forward to have his feet reach the floor. This brings his face closer to the camera, diminishing the apparent size of his body, it also stretches out his chin eliminating the double chin.
- Create a Solid Pyramid Base – Shoulders square to the camera subject looks too heavy and boring. Shoulders turned sideways = to narrow and not enough base. Shoulders at a 45 degree angle give good base and texture to the outfit.
- Sit Tall – place your finger in the subject back on a lower vertebrae and subject will grow 2-3 inches. Avoids the slouchy look.
- Lean Forward Slightly – creates a better proportion between head and body and also creates implied movement.
- Project the Chin – This stretches out any double chin and keeps the face proportional. These first 5 steps should only take a bout ten seconds to complete and will add dramatically to the final portrait.
- Proper Eye Direction – Aim to have the shoulders, head and eyes in 3 different directions
- Proper Head Tilt – Men can have a masculine head tilt (slightly to the low or back shoulder) or no tilt (head square to the shoulders) Women can have a feminine head tilt (head tipped to the near or high shoulder) or a masculine head tilt. Do NOT photograph a man with the feminine head tilt.
- Proper Head Height – Typically the bottom of the nose and the bottom of the ear lobes should line up in a straight line. If nose is higher than ear lobes, you will see too much of the nostrils. If nose is below the ear lobes it can elongate the nose and over emphasize the forehead.
- Avoid Football Shoulders – Shoulders too square to the camera broadens the apparent size and weight of subject. Warning! Everyone who sits in front of your camera will almost always face square to the camera because they don’t know any better. But you do.
- Watch Nose and Cheek Lines – Be sure bridge of nose does not obscure the far eye and the nose should never intersect the cheek line
- Dealing with Glasses – Be careful that the glasses do not distort the cheek line. For reflections in glasses, raise the main light, tip glasses forward or lower chin.
- Don’t Overuse Hair Light – The hair light should b just a hint of light and not overpowering.
- Women Posing – If it bends, bend it. Hands, wrists, knees, and ankles. Photograph the side of a hand not the back of it. Watch feet, hip and shoulder positions.
- Firing Squad Pose – Do not photograph heads on the same level. One head should be higher that the other. Mouth of taller subject should be level with the eyes of the shorter subject.
- Totem Pole Pose – Do not line up heads directly on top of the other. The person in back should be on one side or the other to avoid a static look.