Years ago a friend and I had our senior portraits taken by the same photographer. When we got the proofs back, mine were good, but hers were amazing! I thought to myself, and maybe you’ve thought this before, "I’m just not photogenic." Well, I’ve learned a thing or two since I was seventeen, maybe gained a little confidence, and let me just say I was much happier with how I looked in my wedding photos. Even if you don’t always feel very photogenic, here are a few ways you can look fantastic in photos!
1. Get in the Mood
Thinking happy thoughts will produce a far more genuine smile than merely saying, “Cheese.” I put this one first, because it is the most important! The following tips can be very helpful, but the very best way to appear happy and beautiful in pictures is to be happy and have confidence in your own beauty.
2. Make Like A Turtle
Try this little trick to elongate your neck and avoid the dreaded double chin. Push your face forward, toward the camera. Then tilt your chin down slightly. You might feel a bit like an awkward turtle, but to the camera you will look great!
3. Talk with Your Hands
Stiff or clenched hands steal the attention from even the most brilliant smile and shout, “I’m uncomfortable.” Keep your fingers loose and relaxed like a ballerina’s, or give them something to do. Hold something in your hands or touch your hair gently. If you rest your hands on your hips, slide them up an inch or so to slim your waist and accentuate your curves.
4. Bend It
When it comes to posing, a common phrase among photographers is, “if it bends, bend it.” Make sure that joints like your knees and elbows are slightly bent. This make you look less like a Barbie doll and more like human.
5. Straighten Up
Good posture isn’t just good for you; it makes you look good too! Pulling your shoulders back and pushing your chest out a bit, emphasizes the natural curve of your spine, and exudes confidence. Tipping down your near shoulder is a good idea as well. This little move keeps your body line narrow.
6. Bring Your Booty Back
Another great tip is to bend your front knee and shift your weight to your straight back leg. This position should feel and look comfortable. That slightly bent knee will lengthen your leg and create those appealing curves.
7. Lean A Little
Whatever is closest to the camera is what will appear the largest. I don’t know about you but I’d rather it be my smile than my hips. Lean your upper body toward the camera and you will look relaxed and engaged. Like with the turtle move, this action draws attention to your face and elongates your neck.
Trying to implement all of these suggestions at once is probably a bit daunting, especially while staying relaxed. Don't worry about it! Try choosing just one or two to start. Most importantly, stay happy and confident, and it will shine through in your photos!