We’ve all had someone sneak a photo that captures a weird expression, or catches us at an unflattering angle. This guide is designed to give you confidence in front of any camera, and to help you feel beautiful in every photo from now on – no matter where you are, how made up you are or who is taking the photo. Use these tips whenever a camera is pointed your way!
Note: It is important to remember that an image can never define who you are or what you look like in real life, so remember to be kind to yourself!
Step 1: Find your best light
Find even light
Lighting is one of the most important things in photography because it can drastically change the way we look when a photo is taken. Lighting can make you look 10 years older or 10 years younger. Harsh lighting ages you, casts creepy shadows, and can make you look exhausted. The opposite of harsh light is even light, which is what you want to illuminate your beautiful features.
Face the biggest window
When shooting indoors, the trick is to find the biggest window and face into the light, with your photographer positioned directly between you and the window (or just slightly off to the side). If you don’t have as much control over where you’re standing, at least point your nose towards the brightest light source when inside. If you find yourself outside, a good shade spot is sometimes best especially at high-noon around 12 pm.
Step 2: Take a step back
Cameras create distortion
Have you ever taken a selfie and thought your nose looked large or distorted? That’s because the objects or body parts closest to the camera always appear the largest. The further away from the camera something is, the smaller it will look in comparison to its surroundings.
Close to the camera = larger, Far from the camera = smaller
When getting photographed, try taking a step back from the photographer. If you are within five feet of the camera, it’s best to put your weight on your back leg. If you’re self-conscious of your derrière, you never want your bottom half closer to the camera than your face. My trick is to always lean forward slightly when the camera appears and I always step back, put my weight on my back legs and kick my booty back.
Step 3: Strike a pose
Plant your feet
Turn away from the camera about 45 degrees so that you are at a slight angle to the camera. The best way to do this is to take one half step back, then shift your weight onto the back foot/ leg. Raise the front foot to tip-toe, crossing the knee in.
Pull arms back and out
Let your back arm pull to the outside of your body and rest on your hip following your bodyline. Your front arm can slightly pull away from your body, or even rest your hand on your hip.
Get as tall as possible by lengthening your spine. Be sure not to hold your breath that will make your shoulders rise and look a bit puffed up. When sitting, come to your tiptoes to make your legs look longer.
Think triangles and leading lines. Triangles add depth, create shape, and direct the eye where to go. Find those triangles in your poses and work them!
Want to learn more about looking your best in photos? Download the Judith Hill Photography portrait posing guide!