If you’ve recently looked at a photo of yourself and didn’t like it, I am speaking directly to you. I know exactly how to make you look great in your pictures! More importantly, I know exactly why, you’ll look better—but that’s part of my secret sauce. However, if you know that you’re going to have a lens pointed in your direction in the near future, here are six simple ways to get better results:

  1. Get to Know Your Face. This applies to professional photoshoots as well as every day photos. Take time getting to know your face, how to smile naturally and which side or angle of your face you like better. [Me: I analyze face shapes and proportions and apply my knowledge to light and pose you, based on the theme and purpose of the shot.]
  2. Easy on the makeup. While an evening out is a different story when it comes to makeup, if you’re having headshots, family or maternity photos taken, go easy on the makeup. You want some basic coverage but don’t overdo it. My photographic and interpretive (retouching) style focuses on the eyes and lips. I have tricks up my sleeve to make sure the attention is focused there, so you won’t have to apply too much makeup in those places.
  3. Facing the camera. Unless you’re taking a passport photo, when it comes to posing for photos but in general you shouldn’t be facing the camera head on. Positioning your body at an angle always makes for better photos. I don’t always follow my own advice though… this is just for you, and just a suggestion for more exciting looks.
  4. Controlling your chin. Photos where your neck is elongated and your chin is pushed slightly forward will lift your face and give it a more angular look. You might want to practice this beforehand in order to get used to it. During the session, I’ll show you the magic of this technique. All of my clients come away with great pictures and they start getting much better results in their selfies.
  5. Pick your outfit carefully. Put some thought into what you’ll wear to your shoot. Pair bold designs and patterns with solid colors to avoid too much distraction. You should also pay attention to the fit and shape of your outfit. Make sure it compliments you and that you feel comfortable. I mention this in the Communicating with Your Clothes post.
  6. Use lighting to your advantage. Any professional photographer should be an adept at lighting because it can be the difference between that wow factor and utter disappointment. Unless the mood calls for it, avoid standing directly under a light as this will create weird shadows on your face (under your eyes). When shooting outdoors, the best light will be 15-20 minues before & after sunset.

As much as the above tips will help you during your professional photoshoot, always remember to have fun and relax as this will do wonders for your photos.

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