It’s completely normal to feel a little awkward when taking senior portraits. Many seniors tend to feel self-conscious about their appearance because they feel uncomfortable taking photos on their own. You are probably used to taking photos with a friend, or snapping the occasional selfie in the privacy or your own car or home, having complete control of the situation. Having a pro take photos of you can be a huge adjustment!
Below are my top five tips for taking on your senior portrait session with grace and confidence, and leaving with killer photos that you will be thrilled to share with your family and friends, and love for years to come.
1. Use your eyes.
Use your eyes to express emotion. When you smile naturally your whole face lights up and your eyes look bright and awake. Before the photo session practice smiling in the mirror and use different expressions to see what looks best.
2. Relax. Great photos happen when the subject is relaxed and confident. Let the excitement of you photo session show through the lens as you take a moment and breathe, relax and just have fun. You may feel silly during this process but keep in mind that you probably look much less awkward than it feels. I will do everything I can to help you feel more relaxed, comfortable, and have a good time.
This may sound obvious but breathing is key to capturing a natural look. Take time to practice taking a deep breath while smiling in front of the mirror. Slowly release the air while holding the smile and notice how your face and eyes settle into a natural and relaxed expression. Allow your eyes to “smile” by focusing on the apples of your cheeks pressing upwards. When in doubt, just breathe.
Staying stationary can sometimes produce a very staged and cheesy look. Just because you are sitting or standing still doesn’t mean you can’t change the angle of your body to create a look that is fresh and inspired. Try leaning into the camera slightly to appear more engaged, shift your weight from left to right, or simply move your chin slightly up and down for different shots as this gives us a variety of facial expressions to work with. Of course, your photographer will guide you in posing your body, too… but its always nice to have an idea of what works ahead of time.
This goes for everyone. Ladies, spend some extra time getting your hair blown out or curled, get your makeup done and choose an outfit that makes you look and feel your best. As for the men, take a shower and schedule a haircut, but make sure you get it at least a week before your session to give your hair the time it needs to settle into itself after a crisp cut. I will send you a style guide to go into more detail, but just remember that when you look your best, you feel your best and when you feel your best, you are naturally more confident. Go that extra mile to walk into your senior session feeling confident, attractive, prepared, and inspired.
Got it? Try these 5 tips and you will come to your senior session ready to rock it!