Saturday, March 15, 2008

Modelling tips: posing

Posing is an essential part of many types of model photography. Some photographers will tell you exactly what to do, others may give some directions and yet other photographers will leave it up to you. In any case, you will perform better if you know what to do. Don’t just stand there: pose! Here are some tips:

Imitate and innovate
Why reinvent the wheel? You only need to look at poses of other models and try to match them. Once you succeed, take it a step further. Try small changes: bend your arm, twist your leg, and see if you can improve the pose. Examples are everywhere: check the mags, photographers and other models’ portfolio’s. You may also want to use posing books as an example (Here is a free one). Collect poses that you like, either on paper or on disk. You can also bring some of these examples to a shoot to discuss them with the photographer.

The mirror is your friend
No, it is not weird to stand in front of the mirror and practice your poses. It may feel a bit awkward at first, but it helps. Have you ever wondered why dance studios have mirrors on the wall? It’s because dancers will have to see the effect of their actions. It’s no different for models. Show yourself the effect of your actions; get familiar with your own poses and facial expressions. When a pose looks good in the mirror, it is very likely to look good at a pictur.? The mirror will also help you to figure out which side of your face photographs better.

Put the accents where you want them
Arching your shoulders back, focuses the viewer’s attention to your bustline. Rotate your upper body slightly at the waist to give the impression of a thinner waistline. Similarly, crossing one leg over in front of the other one will make your thigh region look thinner. Don’t overdo though, you’ll look like a kid that needs a bathroom break.

More resources
A posing guide by Roland Berg (pdf)

More useful tips
Do’s and don’ts for your leg and feet
Model Posing Tips from a Professional Photographer

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