Most days, my subjects tend to be people. From clients to my own children, I have people and posing on the brain. I used to get stuck when it came to posing but then I fell into a groove. I learned a few “rules” and once I started implementing those rules, things started to flow.

There are definitely a few things you need to remember when posing people. Don’t think that when I say the word posing, I mean you are showing them how to stand or sit – most times, it is all about how you position yourself!

7 Portrait Posing Tips

7 portrait posing tips

Week 33: August 10-16

1. Do not shoot from below. This is what is referred to as “up the nose” shots. It is not flattering for anyone! It is better to shoot from above the person or straight on. When shooting from above, you can make someone appear to be slimmer and eliminate double chins. It also helps to get the light into their eyes.

7 portrait posing tips

2. Keep arms and legs bent. Remember, if it bends, bend it! If your subject keeps their limbs straight, they will look uncomfortable and stiff. When you have them bend their arms or legs slightly, they will appear more relaxed. It also creates a gap between the arm and the waist. This has a great slimming effect! Another way to keep them relaxed and natural, have them walk towards you.

3. Put weight on the back leg. If you are shooting a full length shot, have your subject put their weight on their back leg and slightly bend their front. This will also make them angle their shoulders so they are not square to the camera. They will appear natural and relaxed!

posing tips

4. Tilt their heads. Bending is just not limited to the limbs! Having your subject slightly tilt their head, especially in a group photo, will add some emotion to the photo. Have a couple tilt their heads toward each other to express their love. Tilting their head will also help create some great angles!

5. Look away from the camera. Some of my absolute favorite photographs are those where my subject isn’t looking right at me. Whether they are looking over their shoulder or into the distance, keep your rule of thirds in mind. You want to make sure you compose them so that there is dead space where they are looking.

posing tips

6. Don’t forget their hands! There are times when I forget to tell them what to do with their hands. Most people tend to know what to do with them! Put them in their pockets, have them touch their cheek, or run them through their hair, but have them do something with their hands! If they put their hands in their pocket, have them keep their thumbs or all of their fingers out. This will avoid the appearance of a chopped hand.

7. Focus on the eyes. I always toggle my focus points on my subject’s eyes. You want to pick the eye closest to the camera. If they eyes aren’t sharp and in focus, your photo will look flat.

7 portrait posing tips

This week, your challenge is to grab your child, a friend, your spouse, anyone and practice posing! Make sure you share your photographs on Facebook!