Pro Tips: Female Model Posing Tips in a Photo Shoot / by Jamil Matheny

Create Space

Triangles will show off those curves and helps position a female model accordingly.

Model Chaira Green (Photo by Jamil Images).

Hey! You… the model! Yes, you! I’d like to provide you with some posing tips. Now you already know as a model comes with hard work and dedication just like anything else. Some people may say that its easy to be a model because all you do is stand there and ‘look pretty’. Well, that’s a myth and its just flat-out wrong! So whether you’re just starting out, you’re an amateur or a professional model; here are some tips that you will help during your next photo shoot.

  1. Follow Directions

    I can’t stress this enough. Following directions from the photographer will help build a rapport with the photographer. It will help the photographer gain positive results from the vision he/she is trying to create through the lens. If the photographer is far away from you, politely ask he/she to speak up or come closer. Now, if the photographer is near you, then listen up and pay attention.

  2. Create Space (Triangles)

    Women love showing off their curves. Whether you have a petite, curvy or plus-size model; creating space or “triangles” will help shows those curves and helps position a female model accordingly. Sure, you can close the triangles such as your legs or arms. However, if you’re going to do that, I would suggest playing with your hair as a filler. Then, bring your hand (the one you’re holding your hair with) down to your shoulders and then your hip. With this method, hopefully, this will help add some flair to your photos and the photographer will get better results.

  3. Facial & Body Expressions

    Unless the photographer wants a silhouette or high fashion shot; there should be some sort of facial expression. Start with lifting your cheekbones a tad bit, so you don’t have a resting face. Squinting also helps make for a sexier picture, if that’s what you’re going for. When you do this, it will display attitude and desire in the photograph. It represents the charisma of the model and the photographer (director) when a person views the picture. For instance, if you [the model] just stand and ‘look pretty’; what does that mean? Well, that means exactly just that. That’s not going to go very far during a photo shoot because the model will not be anything else besides ‘looking pretty’. Again, the photographer is there to build a rapport by expressing his/her artistic vision through the lens and guiding the model along the journey.

  4. Running out of poses? Become an actress!

    After all, you are in front of a camera right? Be silly, be you and get some candid shots. Sometimes, self-expression as a model can create some very good stock photos for commercial art, advertising, etc. (Hello, duh, Shutterstock!) As a photographer, I would ask my model to laugh, pretend you’re taking a selfie, act like you’re shy, etc. However, I would leave this for towards the end of the photo shoot or if the both of you completely ran out of ideas for poses. Pinterest also helps inspire a vision, but I wouldn’t use it too much as you don’t want to plagiarize someone else’s work. So if you have completely run out of ideas, start thinking of your favorite movie and act out a scene.

  5. Use Props

    Whether the photographer has props or if you [the model] brought some props to the photo shoot; this is great! Now, all of the attention isn’t directed towards the model. The photographer will know what should be in the forefront or in the background. So discuss with your photographer and ask if its okay to bring props to the photo session. Take a few photos with your phone to show the photographer what you may have to work with and both of you can collaborate on storyboard ideas so you don’t run out of poses.

I hope that this helps you along your journey to becoming the next photo shoot diva. If you have any problems with a photographer during a photo shoot such as unwanted touching or sexual requests (bonus tip: call the police). Keep it professional and take care.