Getting your picture taken can be a scary thing, especially when it seems like you never look as good in photos as you do in real life. A lot of people have this problem, but there is a simple solution. Being photogenic is not an innate talent, but a skill you can learn with practice. Try these methods to learn how to pose and read the tips so that you can become photogenic and be a good model in all of your friends' photos.
Method 1 of 3: Concentrate on your face
Step 1. Clear your skin
The focus of most portraits is on the face, so make sure your skin is in top condition. Modern cameras capture even the tiniest blemishes and bumps on your skin, which is a blessing on the one hand, but a curse on the other. Keep your skin clean and smooth by washing, applying toner, and applying moisturizer before shooting. You should do this every morning/evening, but especially before you have a photo shoot.
- If you're wearing makeup, make sure your concealer and foundation are well spread and match your skin tone. Let it fade on your neck and earlobes for a natural look.
- Oily skin can ruin a photo because it reflects too much light. Use blotting paper or blotting paper to dab excess fat on the T-zone of your face.
- Exfoliate your face to remove dead skin cells that can make your skin look dull in photos.
Step 2. Focus on what makes you unique
One of the characteristics of photogenic people is their confidence in how they look. Often we are too preoccupied with what is wrong with our face; freckles, a gap between your teeth, how small your eyes get when you smile. Instead of worrying about it, be happy about it! Then you will become much more photogenic.
Step 3. Show your emotions
It's easy to see who's photogenic and who's posing; the former does not have to play his/her emotions. While getting your picture taken can be a nerve-wracking state, it shouldn't get in the way of your real emotions. Don't smile because you think you should, use your real smile. The same goes for the shape of your eyes and the lines of your cheeks. The more you show your real emotions with your face, the better the photo will be.
- Always smile with your teeth, because you wouldn't laugh at a joke with your lips together. With a real smile you always see the teeth, not pressed lips. Keep your face natural by allowing a genuine smile.
- When you show your emotions, your whole face participates. While many people think you can only see happiness from a smile, your eyebrows, eyes, jaws and forehead should also be part of it. Make sure your face can move freely.
Step 4. Do not look straight into the camera
It is said that you look five kilos heavier in a photo. But it doesn't have to be! As a camera turns a 3D object into a 2D object, the shapes flatten and compress. If you look straight into the camera, you can see the entire outline of your face and naturally reduce shadows. Turn your head slightly to the side to get natural highlights and shadows, which will make your face appear thinner.
Step 5. Change the angle of your face
The angle of your face depends on the direction you are looking at the camera. Just like you shouldn't be looking straight into the camera, you shouldn't tilt your face up either. Then your face looks bigger and you show your nostrils to the camera. Tilt your head slightly down and to the side to look your most photogenic.
Method 2 of 3: Taking a Stance
Step 1. Use your strengths
Photogenic people know exactly what their strengths are and what works best. This goes hand in hand with knowing your weaknesses. Which parts of your body do you find most attractive, and which could be a little less flattering in the photo? Do what you can to show your good sides and hide the bad sides from the camera.
Step 2. Turn away from the camera
Standing in front of a camera does the same to your body as it does to your face. Your body gets flatter in a photo, so standing right in front of the camera will make you look your fullest and appear fatter. If you turn three-quarters to show your body from a different angle, you create more shadow and depth.
- To make your arms appear thinner, place one on your hip and rotate your elbow back and away from your body. It might feel silly to do it, but there's a reason celebrities are often photographed like this -- it's really flattering!
- If you're taking the picture sitting down, turn so that the camera is next to you rather than in front of you. Bend your knees and spread your legs slightly. When crossing your legs, cross the leg closest to the camera over the other leg.
Step 3. Flex your joints
How often do you stand or sit completely straight with all your joints aligned? Probably never. Provide some movement and a natural pose in the photo by flexing your joints slightly. That means your elbows, wrists, knees, and ankles should all be comfortably bent.
Step 4. Lean towards the camera
Things that are close we see larger, and things that are far away we see smaller. To create the illusion of a thin body, lean your head slightly towards the camera.
Step 5. Do what feels right
Any advice on poses won't make you photogenic if you don't feel comfortable with it. In the end, it's helpful to remember some tricks, but it's best to just do what feels natural to you. Being photogenic is a combination of acting as naturally as possible as if the camera wasn't there, and posing every inch of your body perfectly. The best way to achieve this is to keep your body in the most comfortable position.
Method 3 of 3: Taking the photos
Step 1. Dress your best
It's hard to be photogenic when you're wearing dirty sweatpants and worn-out sneakers. If you know you will be photographed, choose an outfit that looks good in a photo. Neutral tones and soft colors work best because they emphasize your natural features and don't distract from your face.
- Don't wear anything that hangs too much or is draped too loosely around your body, as that often looks too big and bulky in a photo. On the other hand, don't wear anything that's too tight either, as the camera's flash will highlight any bulges you're trying to hide under your clothes.
- Don't wear something you wouldn't normally wear. The goal is to make you look like your best self; you can't look like yourself wearing something that isn't your style or makes you feel uncomfortable.
Step 2. Locate the light source
The light source of the photo largely determines how you look in it. A light source from above will give you dark shadows under your eyes, while a light source from the side will give heavy background lines. Make sure the light comes from the front and slightly from above. Preferably take your photos in natural light near a window or outside.
- The best light for shooting is in the hour after sunrise and before sunset. Try to take the pictures at these times if you can.
- While some metering photographers can add light to a dark foreground, it's best not to shoot with backlighting. A light source from behind makes your whole body dark and can ruin a good photo.
Step 3. Choose a good location
While you may find it easiest to pose in the car or in front of the mirror and have good light, those aren't the most scenic of backgrounds. Being photogenic also depends on your environment. Take photos in a place where it's beautiful, but where you are the center of attention.
- In a busy restaurant or cafe, there is a lot of distraction in the background of the photo, distracting attention from you as the subject. If you have to pose in a crowded place, blur the background so that you stand out the most.
- If you're taking a group photo, try to get yourself in the center. The two people on the sides always seem the fattest and are often not the center of the photo.
Step 4. Don't be afraid of props
You don't always have to walk around with your tennis racket or hold cutlery, but sometimes a few props can make a photo more interesting and emphasize your personality. Hold something in your hands, lean against something or visualize something that has to do with your hobby.
- If you love to read, hold a book loosely in your hands. Your body will automatically assume a more natural pose and you will add some detail to your portrait.
- Don't use too big props, it's too distracting. The goal is to make you more photogenic with something small and relevant. Putting things that are too large or brightly colored in the picture has the opposite effect.
Step 5. Be confident
Confidence can be seen in a photo, and it's the secret to being photogenic. Even if you don't feel confident, you have to pretend in front of the camera. The quality of your photos will improve greatly if you are convinced that you look good and that the photo will be beautiful.
- Take more than one photo before putting the camera down. Even if you are satisfied with the first one, you should try it a few more times. Move a little between the different photos. Sometimes a small change makes a very big difference.
- Taking pictures of yourself with a webcam, phone, or digital camera takes practice. You have to learn to find the right angle so that you know where to hold your hand.
- Pretend you're smiling. You often have a natural smile without any effort. Just before the camera flashes, pretend you just saw something funny, or someone told you a joke!
- Turn to the sun during the hour before sunset and after sunrise. Relax your facial muscles, then you can take some beautiful pictures because the sunlight brings out the color of your eyes nicely.
- Practice smiling in front of the mirror. You'll soon know which smile looks fake and which is the most flattering. Learning how to move your face will help when someone reaches for the camera. Smile with your upper teeth: It may feel unnatural, but a smile with both rows of teeth can look fake.
- Have close friends look at the photos you've taken to help determine when you look your best. Sometimes a critical second pair of eyes is a big help.
- Don't say "cheese" when looking at the camera. Then you get a forced smile.
- Study photos of models and other photogenic people. If it fits your personality, experiment with imitating their poses and facial expressions.