The Art of Posing People Naturally

The Art of Posing People Naturally

Posing naturally, or getting others to pose naturally is not as easy as you might think. Almost every photographer and person who enjoys taking portrait photographs, but getting models to appear natural can be tricky. Portraits are a great way of showing emotions in people, but if they are at the wrong angle or they appear stiff, the photograph might be read the wrong way.

Although it is impossible to guarantee that every portrait photograph you take will come across as a natural photograph, there are a few tips and tricks we will share with you in this article. However, before you start taking snaps, it’s vital that you prepare properly first. Preparation is key to taking good photographs, especially if you are trying to take natural portrait pictures.

How Do You Prepare?

There are plenty of natural photographs that you might have seen in the past. If you have some photographs, don’t forget to bring them with you to the shoot, as they can help inspire you. If you don’t, consider doing some research online first. There are lots of fantastic photographers who have published a lot of their work on the web, and by saving these images to a folder on your phone, you easily be able to access them when you are taking shots. There is a wide range of apps readily available on online app stores that are designed to help photographers and models with posing positions.

Deciding on the right model for the job is not easy. By hiring a professional model with plenty of experience, they will know the correct posing positions as they will have done the same many times in the past, but they can cost a lot of money. If you ask a friend or family member to model, then consider showing them examples of poses from professional models first. Being a professional model is harder than it looks, which is why hiring them can burn a hole in your pocket. If you want to save money you can ask your local colleges or universities if there are any models starting their career wanting to work on the shoot for free or for a small fee. Those who hope to start out a career as a model need to build a portfolio to attract agents, so don’t be surprised if you find a top model that costs a fraction of the price of a seasoned professional.

You and the Model Must Work as a Team

It is no coincidence why some of the world’s best photographers and the best models work together on a regular basis. They understand and trust each other, which is what models and photographers need to work on to get the best possible shots. Being on the same wavelength as your model will help save time, money, and it will improve your chances of making great photographs.

Making sure your models are feeling relaxed is vital. If they are feeling stressed or tense, the chances are they won’t be able to pose properly. The last thing you want is a model looking stiff and sad. Before you start working, make small talk to help break the ice. Consider offering them something to drink and make them feel at home. This will help lift the pressure and help create a good working environment.

Try to remain positive around your models, even when things are not going to plan. Shouting orders at the model can make shooting natural portraits very difficult. Providing them with plenty of encouragement will make a big difference. By providing them with positive energy and directing them will make for a great partnership. Keep in mind that it will take time to get the perfect shots, so try and remain patient.

Helpful Tips

Here are a few tips on how you can make your images look more natural:

Explain in detail what you expect of your model: You don’t need to be pushy, but most models like it when their photographer tells them exactly what to do. Keep in mind that you are in charge of the operation. However, your model might have something he or she wants to bring to the shot. If they have some good ideas, there is no harm in giving it a try, but at the end of the day, it is your shot.

Props can make a big difference: Beautiful earrings or a nice flower can make or break your photograph. Bring plenty of props and find out what suits your model and the setting.

Encouragement throughout the shoot: When your model does something you want him or her to do during the shoot, don’t forget to give positive feedback.

Angles: The most important thing when trying to achieve a natural photograph is angels. Don’t forget to change your angels regularly.

Some photographers like to have their models staring straight into the lens of the camera. These images can help grab a person’s attention. However, few photographers manage to get a good photograph of their model by shooting from below. It is hard to bring out the model’s best features when taking a photograph from below their head. However, shooting from above works great sometimes.

How Can You Help the Model?

Although it is the model’s job, the photographer will have to know the ins and outs of how to pose people for pictures. At the end of the day, it is the photographer’s shoot, and they have to be in control of everything. By showing your models exactly how you want them to pose can help a lot.

The angle of the model’s nose is important. By making sure the model’s nose is a small bit off-center can make a big difference. Think about practicing different angles before you start the shoot. This is a great way of preparing your model, without having the added pressure of a camera present. During the actual shoot, show you model some of the images you have captured. This will allow you to explain to them what you want to be done differently.


With all the props, camera equipment, models, etc. the whole experience can be overwhelming for the photographer and the model, which can make taking natural portraits very difficult. Try avoiding overcomplicating things. If you give your model a long list of instructions, they will probably get confused, so keep it short and simple.

Plus, you should not overcomplicate the photograph either. By keeping the shoot simple, it makes your life a lot easier and it will allow the photograph to focus on what you want people to see. By using too many crops at one time, the image might appear too busy.

If you’re not a photographer with lots of experience, it will take you some time to master your trait. Expect to make mistakes, and remember to learn from them. Positivity rubs off on people around you, so make sure you are in good form when communicating with the models and anybody else working on the shoot. Give clear directions to the model, even if you are new to photography. If it is your first time shooting a professional shoot, consider asking an experienced photographer or model to help you with the job.


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