A Guide to Getting Comfortable in Front of the Camera

One of the most common things I hear from people is that it’s hard for them to get comfortable in front of the camera and I totally agree, being in front of the camera is pretty nerve-racking. The good news is, it doesn’t have to be! I decided to put together a little “how-to” giving a couple of pointers to both photographers and subjects alike, that should make life just a wee-bit easier once you get in front that camera:

1. Familiarize Yourself with the Camera

Take photos OFTEN. We aren’t in the film age anymore (if you even know what film is…) so it’s not like you’ll have to pay for every photo you take.

Don’t shy away from photo opportunities. If you’re one of those people who cover their face every time someone pulls out their camera, stop it. Now. Embrace the opportunities so it’s less weird to see yourself in a photo.

2. The Mirror is Your Best Friend

I repeat, the mirror is your best friend! You already own one (I hope), practice posing in front of it. Familiarize yourself with how you look. Act out scenes, check your facial expressions, see what works and doesn’t work for you. When camera time comes, you’ll be prepared knowing you don’t look “weird” (don’t worry, you won’t ever look weird).

3. Be Wholly You

Model: Khali Carela • Agency:  STATE Management

Model: Khali Carela • Agency: STATE Management

Have fun when you’re having your photo taken. Personality shows and as long as you aren’t a complete and utter prude, that beautiful character of yours will reflect in pictures. Of course, your photographer shares the responsibility for making sure you feel comfortable enough to be yourself so if you feel a little self conscious, tell him/her. That little bit of communication can be the difference maker.

4. Communication is key!

I always say this but it’s important for me to get to know my subjects before taking their photograph. Any and every one who has had their photograph taken by me will tell you, I break the ice by allowing us to talk before I stick a camera in their face and then I talk even more while I take their photograph. It’s a practice in multitasking but there’s nothing more awkward than the silent, staring photographer who doesn’t get to know anything beyond your subject’s name. If you are this photographer, consider taking time to engage in casual conversations with people you’re unfamiliar with to shake off those nerves. It will take your portrait work to a whole new space.

These little tips can open a world of comfort and shake off those pesky nerves when shooting but if you need more help getting comfortable try booking a simple session with me to take your portraits from good to amazing.