5 Ways to Be a Better Model (Even For Your Selfies!)

Model: Alyssa

Model: Alyssa

I’m big on consulting with my clients before actually shooting with them. It’s important to know whom you are dealing with and allowing them to get to know whom they will be working with. I also make it a practice to converse with other photo professionals about their photo shoots and experiences with their subjects.  All too often I hear people talk about how they wish they could do a shoot over (both models and photographers) and a common complaint is that they don’t look flattering, or they don’t look like themselves, or that they just outright hate the picture! Now, sometimes (quite possibly most of the time) that may be the photographer’s fault. However, there is a way to get something GOOD even if you’re dealing with someone not so skilled at giving good direction (another common complaint), and that’s being a better model. Now I’m not saying you aren’t a good model, but what I am saying is if you run into a situation where someone isn’t able to guide you to a photo that you’ll both be happy with, there’s a couple of things that you can do to guarantee yourself at least something you can go home happy with:

1.  Communication – now this may seem OBVIOUS, however, most people assume that they’re dealing with a professional and in such, that person should know what they are doing, which is more than valid. The problem in that assumption is that your photographer may be amazing with a camera, but he/she still doesn’t know what you may or may not like and with that, they can’t know if the pictures they may like will be mutually pleasing to you. As I mentioned early, I consult with my clients/subjects. I ask about what it is they are looking for, if there’s anything they feel insecure about, how comfortable they are in front of the camera, what is it that they like about MY work, what they may or may not like about pictures they’ve taken before. This gives me a guideline and makes collaborating a dual effort thing. You go in with confidence knowing that your photographer is on the same page as you, and confidence shows in photos.

2.  Know Your Angle(s) – You own a cell phone, you have an Instagram, SnapChat, Facebook and every other life invading social media outlet, and more than likely you’ve taken thousands of selfies, so you’re probably a selfie professional by now. You’ve probably have noticed that you generally take photos in a particular way because it’s most flattering to your face. With that said, you have a pretty good idea which angle you prefer your face to be seen in. Well my friend, that there is your angle! Your photographer typically has an eye for catching an angle that he/she finds flattering, if you pay attention to where they are capturing you from, you can position yourself to make sure that they catch similar angles to what you enjoy seeing the most. Works for you and works for them.

3.  Learn a Little About Lighting – This may seem complicated, but it’s a little simpler than you think. Ask your photographer “which light is the key light?” (he/she will be thoroughly impressed you even know what that is) but most importantly, when they direct you to it, you generally want your face to be facing the key light (unless otherwise directed). The key light is the main light, it molds your face, it is typically the most flattering light on the set and if the goal is to get something you will like, well this will probably guarantee it. Don’t believe me? Look at this video and randomly pause it at any point in time: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6sgpeoWpO9w

4.  Get Out of Your Mind – I can’t tell you how often this little tidbit changes a photo from WTF to OMG <3  . Sometimes we worry so much about what we are doing, that we forget to actually just do it. If you find yourself focusing on trying to “look good”, stop, take a breath, shake it out and chat a bit. Talk to your photographer, ask him/her what direction it is that they’re going in, act it out a bit and then let it flow. That little bit of chat can go a long way in allowing yourself to just be.

5.  BE YOURSELF – I know you watched a marathon of Top Model and Tyra is amazing, that’s because Tyra is being Tyra. Your personality shows in your photos and when you aren’t being authentically you, well that shows as well. Don’t be afraid to be a little goofy, don’t think you need to act like something you’re not, the more fun you have on set the more fun the shoot will be. And as I said before, confidence shows, so you being YOU is as confident as it gets!

Your last tip (I know I said 5, SURPRISE!) is to Book a Session with me! I pride myself in my coaching. I love to direct from the beginning of my shoots up until we’re done. Having a seasoned professional guide you will take you to new heights with your modeling. And when’s a better time than NOW to elevate your