4 tips to make the most of your portrait session
Everyone wants to look great for their professional portraits! I've put together a few simple tips to help you look ( and feel) tip-top for your pictures.
1. Make your clothing work for you, not against you.
If you have an area of your body that is bothersome to you, use your clothing to minimize it. For example, if you aren't a huge fan of your arms, I recommend wearing long sleeves, or even just a crop sleeve cardigan to help bring attention away from that area.
Are your legs not your thing? Wear a nice, long skirt, or pants that are a relaxed fit and stick to neutral colored bottoms with a brighter top to bring attention upwards.
Another great example, the belly! After having two children, I avoid tight shirts, and really focus on tops that flow away from my body, especially for pictures! Top a beautiful shirt, with a great scarf, and you'll bring the attention right where it belongs, your lovely face. Almost any part of your body that you don't like, can be masked perfectly in your portraits with a few simple wardrobe adjustments.
Also, be sure to really check over your wardrobe choices. Check it standing up and sitting down ( things look totally different when you sit). Be sure sure you're not choosing something that may look too tight, clingy or see-though on camera. Don't forget to check and make sure your undergarments don't peek out anywhere. No one wants to be fiddling with straps for their entire session.
When your clothes look great and hide any bits and pieces you're not happy with, you'll feel better and look phenomenal. If you need more examples, or help styling for your session, just ask, I'm happy to help!
2. Posture matters.
I am HORRIBLE about good posture and a terrible example most of the time ( although I'm trying to work on it). Good posture during your portraits really spruces up your overall images. Try to stand casually, without being rigid, but with your back straight, it really polishes those pictures!! Posture is especially important in sitting poses, be sure to keep your shoulders back. During your session with me, I'll do my best to remind you to keep that posture looking great!
Another awesome posture tip, if you have trouble with a double chin, try to keep your chip up slightly, while bringing your head forward to elongate the neck. Think of how chickens stretch their necks! Sounds silly, but it works!
3. Leave your personal space bubble at home
Personal space bubble: everyone has one! If you're taking pictures with family members, you'll need to look super tight knit in your pose (for most poses). Everyone, myself included, has a tendency to leave a little bit of space between them and the nearest person. During a portrait session, this space looks a bit awkward in the finished images. You really want to show off you're closeness and connection as a family or a couple, so prepare to be super close during your session. We're talking squished in, uncomfortably close. If you feel you're close-enough, you'll probably still need to move in closer, but I promise, it's for the sake of beautiful family pictures! Put your arms around your loved ones and pull them in!
4. Smile. REALLY Smile!
A smile is the most beautiful thing a person can wear. No really, it's true! A true smile in your portraits makes all the difference in the world. I know getting pictures done can be stressful with picking wardrobe, getting ready, making sure the littles behave ( and trying not to pull out your hair when they don't). Be a duck, let those things roll of your back and grin. I promise you'll love your portraits so much more if you do. Fake smiles may fool other people, but you'll look back and realize that you weren't truly smiling and the picture will lose a bit of it's luster. Do what you need to do, tell a joke to your husband, make a silly face at the kids. Get that smile out to shine!
My own children are a nightmare to photograph ( at least for me!). I totally know what it's like to force a smile. They can't seem to focus for five minutes on some days. There are times when keeping a smile on my face while also getting the two kiddos to look at the camera, fixing my tripod ( to take our own family portraits), using the wireless remote ( that for some reason refuses to function when my children are actually looking at the camera), and keeping everyone from running off at the last second, seems like too much to bear. I smile anyway, because I know the end result will be worth it!