You would not think my gorgeous model here was incredibly camera shy, would you?
So many people say, “I’m just not photogenic.” That’s not true. No client is “unphotogenic.” Being photogenic is due to proper lighting and coaching your subject to get flattering poses and smiles. A good photographer will show clients something that the client does not see in themselves.
One thing you can do right now that makes everyone look more lovable? Create catchlights in your client’s eyes.
Remember general flattering tips for everyone:
Start with the chin and forehead toward you. Have your subject bring their chin and forehead toward the camera, this should be something they do in every photo. It’s incredibly flattering on everyone.
Have your client lean toward the camera, as if leaning in to have an intimate conversation.
Have them shift their weight onto one foot, keeping one foot forward.
Try out different angles to find their good side.
Make sure their arms are never pressed against their body; this adds bulk that isn’t there.
Make sure hands are relaxed.
Always use the rule of thirds in your cropping.
Always take photos at eye level with your subject or just a little higher.
Talk to your client. Get the conversation going and take pictures when they don’t expect it. You’re more likely to get natural expressions and beautiful emotions.
Group photo tips:
Have your subjects always connecting in some way; touching hands, touching heads, hand on shoulder, leaning toward each other, laughing, etc.
Try silly prompts to make your clients laugh: One tip I’ve heard is to tell the guys to lean in closely and whisper what he’s had for breakfast in her ear! Silly things that catch people off guard make really beautiful photos.
It is going to feel like this is a lot to remember, but you’ll get used to it pretty quickly and this will all become second nature. Many of my tips have come from great educators such as Amy and Jordan and Sue Bryce.