One of my readers (hey Natasha) asked me to do a blog post on how to pose for blog photos. This definitely got me thinking so here are some tips from me on posing. Before I get into those, remember that to know how to pose you have to know your blog's style. I like mine to reflect elegance and a depth of character. It might not seem like much, but the images I use are always selected based on this goal.
1. Don't take yourself too seriously
If you're taking yourself too seriously, you are more likely to pose in a way that looks ridiculous. It will also restrict how free you can be with your poses, because you'll be worried about how cool you look.
2. Have fun
If you're having fun you'll move more freely. You'll also be able to express a wide range of emotions. You don't need to smile in your pictures (but smiles are infectious so don't be shy), there are a whole range of natural emotions you will express as you explore an outfit: surprise, curiosity, interest... these are all things you can capture. You don't have to stand square to the camera smiling like a school photo. Have fun with it and move freely. Be creative.
3. Think about the camera
I'm lucky enough to work with a photographer who can respond to my poses in order to get the best picture possible. Even when you don't have a responsive camera, think about the framing of the photo. When framing a shot photographers often think about the rule of thirds, which is meant to balance an image. Think about how you can fill the frame, or work with what is being framed with you to get the best picture. Make sure the camera can see everything you are showing off. By keeping an eye on the lens, you can turn your body to make sure everything you want to be seen is seen.
4. Think about light
Once you've got all the things you want to show off facing the camera, you need to make sure the light enhances this. Golden hour (shortly after sunrise or before sunset) is the best time to get spectacular light. My tip for this is to put the camera in your shadow as a starting place. Then move around to get the best light. Also, think about balancing the light with a lack of it. Having light all around from every direction (midday sun is an example of this) makes pictures look really flat. Good light will take your shots to the next level, and will make your poses worth it.
5. Think about what you are wearing
If your outfit has a basic shape (such as a shift dress), you may want to alter the shape your legs and arms make to compliment or contrast what the dress is doing. I have some pretty shoes with bows on the sides and I find posing them a challenge because if I'm facing the camera, they aren't. When I'm wearing big draping skirts, I like to sit so I can show off how they fall. Twirling lifts skirts up. Walking can get the shape of trousers really nicely. Find ways to capture your outfits at their best.
Posture is a big part of posing. I'm lucky enough to have studied several forms of dance which helps with posture and poses. I like to tell myself to think tall, use my core to hold my body upright and to think about looking strong. Strength and elegance go hand in hand. Also, use your shoulders. They frame your face. Try lifting them, lowering them and moving them forward and back to see how you can enhance what you are doing.
Standing still and posing is really hard. It's not something most people do naturally. Moving is a much more natural thing and helps to give the clothes life. Try walking (take a couple of steps forward and back), twirling, rocking from side, tilting your head in different directions, moving your legs. Remember, models walk on the catwalk, and the movement looks great!
8. Love your body
Know your body and love it. When you get to know the things about yourself that you love (your hair, your jaw, the shape of your butt), you can capture those things in your pictures. When you pose, you think 'look at this gorgeous shoulder line' and that stands out in the pictures.
I hope this has helped you enhance any photos you might be in!