I have shot so much this past year and I am very excited to book up my 2020. But I know I personally used to wonder how the heck photographers come up with all of these ideas every. single. time. And what I mean is this isn’t the only session they have and the ideas are flowing, they have 5 engagement sessions this week and every single session is so amazing.
Now that I have done it, I get it. And it’s really not that difficult. And the big secret is really no secret at all…
For starters, you need to get whoever you are shooter to be comfortable. Crack a couple bad jokes, tell some stories, just let them relax and get used to it. Most people aren’t big fans of getting there photos taken. Any photo you take and they feel so uncomfortable and awkward, it shows.
When it comes to different pose ideas, for me, I like to see how they normally move. When they sit, do they naturally lean a certain way or if they happen to move their hair, I constantly am having them repeat it. “Can you do that again, how you just moved your hair? Wait look back like you just did but move your arm a little this way.” I try and mimic natural movements and comfortable positions they have done at some point.
For more posed shots, I use to spend a lot of time looking at other photographers work, Pinterest and just trying things. And after trial and error you find out what you like, create your own style, and get the hang of what about each pose works. When I’m feeling a block now going into a shoot, I have a back log of shots and poses I know are simple to get, and look great every single time. I am not encouraging stealing ideas, but get inspired and make it your own.
Taking into consideration who you are shooting will help decide what poses will be best. I wouldn’t
ask a guy coming for a senior session to pop a leg arms in the air necessarily. I would most likely keep posing simple, easy, quick and more ‘macho’ because they probably were dragged there by there mom and don’t want to do this. So keeping everything fast and easy with poses like hands in pockets, crossed, leaning against a wall, ext. Asking him to jump with a cap and gown - probably a reach.
Another example of this, is if I have an engagement session. They are all dolled up, look amazing, got her makeup professionally done and is shooting on the beach and seems to be very cautious of getting dirty or messing anything up… my first pose idea won’t be jumping in the ocean and getting soaked. Trust me, with some of my couples I still will try at the end, but you don’t want their first thought to be ‘my photographers a nut why do they want me to jump in the ocean’.
Lastly, you may see the shot your going for, they may not. So going back to having them jump in the water, they may not see the photo in your head. They are having a harder time imagining what your going for, even if you know exactly what it is. So communication is really important. Try your best to explain what it is they need to do and how incredible this shot will be. Make them excited with every pose and make it excited to do the next shot. So even if they have a hard time getting why you want them to do something, they are also excited and more willing to try it.
Hopefully this helps guide you to pose your next session with just some tips on how to approach your client! Trust me, it gets easier coming up with your own ideas and having your own surplus of poses that are amazing overtime! Just takes practice and time!