Do you ever find yourself thinking that you are not photogenic, that you don't know how to pose or that you just hate pictures? You are not alone, most people feel this way about themselves! How do I know? I've photographed a number of women in the last 7 years, and those are the sentiments I've heard echoed over and over. Heck, I've even given a TedTalk about the issue!
But I know that at the heart of this the real question that most people, especially women, want answered is - will I look beautiful in these images?
And there's totally nothing wrong with wanting to look beautiful, especially in images.
I'm convinced that ANYONE can look stunning in photographs if the conditions are right.
And below I share with you 5 steps you should take to in order to get over the fear of being photographed.
1. Do your research
I don't know about you, but for me, knowledge gives me power, and I do all I can all the time to educate myself whenever possible. If I'm about to head into a new area I've never been, I do a bit of research. If I'm going to interview someone, I research about them. You get the picture. Research about photographers in your area, go on Pinterest and Instagram and see what other people have done for inspiration. Go on photographers' websites and social media and read what their philosophy around photography is. Anyone can deliver a photograph, find one that will deliver a photograph that will take your breath away.
2. Get to know the photographer that you love
I cannot stress this one enough. This will make or break your shoot, so don't compromise if you can help it. Once you've picked a photographer, get to know them. Meet them in person or have a conversation over the phone. I've had it happen on two occasions that I didn't talk to photographers, and both times the experience was not that great. So establish a connection if you can, BEFORE the shoot.
3. Plan an exciting wardrobe
I remember just 3 weeks ago as I was getting ready for these featured shoot thinking just how my wardrobe was all black. As much as I loved the all-black aesthetic, I knew that it would look a bit boring in pictures. So that's when I went looking for colorful pieces to add to the mix.
So, as much as you should be yourself, find clothing pieces that are inspiring. The advice I have give to my clients before is that the outfits should feel like they are 'too much'. Accessories, scarves etc :-) Boring clothes will kill a photo shoot before it even begins, and for they give the photographer little to work with.
If you'd like some more tips on picking photo shoot outfits, leave a comment below and I'll work on a post for you.
4. Get makeup done
I know some people cringe on this one, and that's okay. However, I've found that makeup is the bridge between women liking their pictures and being BLOWN away. Of course, it has to be done right, so have a look at makeup artists'portfolios and pick one closest to what you love. And your photographer can advise on whom to contact.
5. Communicate your insecurities
Okay, I don't mean that you start a self-depreciation party, but let your photographer know what you like and don't like. If you are self-conscious about your arms, let them know, there are certain outfits you can wear and poses you can do that disguise this well. If you are unsure about moving in front of the camera, let your photographer know, after all, most of us are not models! So be very clear and if you've picked the right photographer, they'll listen and help you come up with solutions.
Remember that photographs are all about memories, so getting the experience right is a vital piece of the process. No matter how perfect the pictures are, if you were not in the right headspace, or if you just felt stressed the whole time, all the images will do is to remind of this unpleasant time in your life.
These tips are by no means set in stone, nor is the list exhaustive, but I hope this helps. Let me know if something resonates in comments below.