Strike a Pose - Posing Guide

anonymouscubananonymouscuban Inner Tube PilotPosts: 4,709Super Moderators moderator
edited November 14, 2016 in People
I think it's safe for me to say that one of the most difficult skills with portraiture is posing. It is key to creating spectacular portraits. I often save images of poses I like so I can use them as a reference so I thought, why not create a stickied thread where we can share some of our own favorite poses?

So... please add your photo(s) of some poses you've shot that you love. Add a description of the pose if you'd like. Remember, only your own photos though. Have to follow the rules. :deal

I'll start the thread off with a triptych of a series seated poses:

DSC2907-Edit-Edit-XL.jpg
"I'm not yelling. I'm Cuban. That's how we talk."

Moderator of the People and Go Figure forums

My Smug Site

Comments

  • anonymouscubananonymouscuban Inner Tube Pilot Posts: 4,709Super Moderators moderator
    edited September 25, 2012
    Another set:

    DSC2936-Edit-Edit-XL.jpg
    "I'm not yelling. I'm Cuban. That's how we talk."

    Moderator of the People and Go Figure forums

    My Smug Site
  • anonymouscubananonymouscuban Inner Tube Pilot Posts: 4,709Super Moderators moderator
    edited September 26, 2012
    DSC2921-Edit-Edit-XL.jpg
    "I'm not yelling. I'm Cuban. That's how we talk."

    Moderator of the People and Go Figure forums

    My Smug Site
  • anonymouscubananonymouscuban Inner Tube Pilot Posts: 4,709Super Moderators moderator
    edited September 26, 2012
    DSC2915-Edit-Edit-XL.jpg
    "I'm not yelling. I'm Cuban. That's how we talk."

    Moderator of the People and Go Figure forums

    My Smug Site
  • VayCayMomVayCayMom making real life prettier Posts: 1,869Registered Users Major grins
    edited December 25, 2012
    DSC2915-Edit-Edit-XL.jpg

    thank you so much for this , I really can use this !
    Trudy
    www.CottageInk.smugmug.com

    NIKON D700
  • WillCADWillCAD Grinning Buffoon Posts: 722Registered Users Major grins
    edited December 25, 2012
    And I'll just bet that all of the time Alex spends photographing that beautiful lady of his, he calls it "work", and writes it all off of his taxes...

    Thanks for the thread, Alex. Posing actually is something I've always had a lot of trouble with. I'll be looking at this thread for advice and tips, not just with beautiful ladies (I spend depressingly little time in such company), but for other common posing situations like couples and kids.
    What I said when I saw the Grand Canyon for the first time: "The wide ain't wide enough and the zoom don't zoom enough!"
  • anonymouscubananonymouscuban Inner Tube Pilot Posts: 4,709Super Moderators moderator
    edited December 25, 2012
    Glad its helpful. Hopefully others will add some photos and posing tips.
    "I'm not yelling. I'm Cuban. That's how we talk."

    Moderator of the People and Go Figure forums

    My Smug Site
  • novicesnappernovicesnapper Major grins Posts: 445Registered Users Major grins
    edited January 7, 2013
    These aren't images per sae, but numerous links to websites with posing guides, from babies to couples to families to boudoir. Just click the links under the sections, to go to their site.
    http://pinterest.com/barbbolin/photography-poses/ Joining PinInterest isn't a requirement, just a jump off point.
  • Linnea LenkusLinnea Lenkus professional photographer Posts: 3Registered Users Beginner grinner
    edited April 9, 2013
    Posing Guides - not for me
    I think that posing guides are crutches. You know why? Because it should come from a place of authenticity or creativity. If you don't use your mind while posing and try to connect with your subject and ask yourself what needs to be done for something to look natural then you will not develop that part of your brain. Too many photographers are checking out everyone else's websites "for ideas" instead of developing their own style of creativity.

    When I got too busy to check out any other photographer's sites my creativity soared.

    Just my 2 cents.
  • rexbobcatrexbobcat In the Middle Posts: 49Registered Users Big grins
    edited April 9, 2013
    I think that posing guides are crutches. You know why? Because it should come from a place of authenticity or creativity. If you don't use your mind while posing and try to connect with your subject and ask yourself what needs to be done for something to look natural then you will not develop that part of your brain. Too many photographers are checking out everyone else's websites "for ideas" instead of developing their own style of creativity.

    When I got too busy to check out any other photographer's sites my creativity soared.

    Just my 2 cents.

    That's like telling someone who's never used off-camera lighting before that they just need to ask themselves what needs to be done and try and be creative with it.

    It doesn't work like that. It's much more useful to learn the rules first and then break them instead of practicing willful ignorance.

    Posing guides are less applicable to people with experience with posing learned elsewhere, but honestly uniting is new and everything ha been done before. I can guarantee that you didn't just spontaneously come up with those creative concepts you speak of. You most likely subconsciously combined or rehashed concepts that have already been expressed somewhere else.

    It's the nature of art. Creativity extends only as far a your experiences. It cannot exist in a vacuum.
  • BountyphotographerBountyphotographer Shoot first and ask later Posts: 392Registered Users Major grins
    edited April 13, 2013
    I think that posing guides are crutches. You know why? Because it should come from a place of authenticity or creativity. If you don't use your mind while posing and try to connect with your subject and ask yourself what needs to be done for something to look natural then you will not develop that part of your brain. Too many photographers are checking out everyone else's websites "for ideas" instead of developing their own style of creativity.

    When I got too busy to check out any other photographer's sites my creativity soared.

    Just my 2 cents.



    I really like what you said . The only thing is to find that fine line where one actually start soaring his/hers creativity by stopping to check other's people site.
    Really though indeed but at the end you are absolutely right and I love your picturesbowdown.gifbowbowdown.gif
    :photo
  • WillCADWillCAD Grinning Buffoon Posts: 722Registered Users Major grins
    edited April 16, 2013
    I think that posing guides are crutches. You know why? Because it should come from a place of authenticity or creativity. If you don't use your mind while posing and try to connect with your subject and ask yourself what needs to be done for something to look natural then you will not develop that part of your brain. Too many photographers are checking out everyone else's websites "for ideas" instead of developing their own style of creativity.

    When I got too busy to check out any other photographer's sites my creativity soared.

    Just my 2 cents.

    After my knee surgery, the doctor gave me these metal things to put under my arms and keep my weight off my knee till it healed. People kept telling me that I should stop using them - they're just crutches. But I found that I couldn't stop, at least not right away, because the knee wasn't strong enough to bear my weight. As my knee gradually healed, I used the crutches less and less, then I started using a cane, and eventually I limped along on my own. Now, over a year later, I don't even limp any more. And I no longer need the crutches.

    People don't just automatically divine how to do anything. You have to have some training or instruction to do anything, and a posing guide is a type of instruction manual for beginners. Once they learn the basics, they can abandon the guide and start learning how to do it on their own, but when they're newbies, some assistance is vital to developing whatever innate talent they may have into a marketable skill.
    What I said when I saw the Grand Canyon for the first time: "The wide ain't wide enough and the zoom don't zoom enough!"
  • brad21brad21 Big grins Posts: 10Registered Users Big grins
    edited April 17, 2013
    This 10 year old taught me some things! (not that I knew anything to begin with...:D)

    IMG_6060-L.jpg

    IMG_0140-2-L.jpg

    IMG_6100-L.jpg
  • daniel212daniel212 Big grins Posts: 29Registered Users Big grins
    edited June 14, 2013
    Pose from the Ground Up
    A good portrait pose, be it a head shot, partial or full-body, starts with the feet. If your subject’s feet and legs are not set in the right manner, then the rest of the structure goes out-of-whack.
    A good rule-of-thumb is to have your subject place their weight on the rear leg and turn 3/4 from the camera’s position. Also, have your subject flare their elbows away from the body a little to thin-out their silhouette.

    thank you for Sharing the posing Guide
  • lightcatcher2014lightcatcher2014 Big grins Posts: 23Registered Users Big grins
    edited March 15, 2014
    Some of the poses are interesting and useful. Some have way too many appendages (arms, hands, knees, legs) that the viewer is distracted by them and attention is diverted from the face which is the most important feature of a portrait. it would be good to have more focus on the face and expression, but it is personal choice of course.

    Also any appendage close to the lens is distorted and it looks larger than the face, so this is useful to keep in mind. Larger features in the image attract more attention and again distract the viewer.

    Otherwise, light and image quality are good. These are well post-processed portraits in studio.


    Cheers,
    --
    Trifon Anguelov
    Portrait and Wedding Photographer, Mountain View, CA

    http://www.weddingphotographyblogger.com
  • Ray DauphinaisRay Dauphinais Innocent Bystander Posts: 92Registered Users Big grins
    edited February 26, 2015
    Forget about the dishes in your sink at home!
    I use several different images but have had a variation of this sign up in my studio for years.

    16472358329_6744fc4300_c.jpg
    All my images are made with 100% recycled electrons.

    Follow me on Twitter and Like me on Facebook
  • chaddchadd Big grins Posts: 80Registered Users Big grins
    edited May 5, 2015
    I use several different images but have had a variation of this sign up in my studio for years.

    16472358329_6744fc4300_c.jpg

    Yeah, it is totally true.
    Have been working with tens of professional models and only a few could pose naturally.
  • The LeaderThe Leader Big grins Posts: 82Registered Users Big grins
    edited November 14, 2016
    I find some of the best shots are done as people relax after the initial shot is taken especially with a nervous subject.
  • SighSigh Big grins Posts: 11Registered Users Big grins

    Some of the people who pose for me are damn easy. And others will stand and smile. I have to ask them to do this, that and the other just to get something that looks natural. For some, the very thought of a camera facing them brings out the very worst in their entire look. So I'm afraid I'm all for this "crutch". I'll shoot crutchless with my more experienced model/friends. But for those who want these images and haven't the experience, then yes, little visual keys are essential.

  • crushercrusher flower mound texasPosts: 2Registered Users Beginner grinner
    Posing people is definitely an endless struggle, in the context of what I liked 5 years ago doesn't seem to satisfy my now. I want to evolve my people photography and the posing that comes with people photography. I find myself leaning toward smaller body tweaks with individuals to play with subtle movements to gently move with what people naturally start with--maybe a zen-like approach, not sure, but I'm still evolving, and this makes me happy.
Sign In or Register to comment.