28 Days of Portrait Photography

Lesson 19 of 85

Day 10: Shooting Curves

 

28 Days of Portrait Photography

Lesson 19 of 85

Day 10: Shooting Curves

 

Lesson Info

Day 10: Shooting Curves

Of course, you know this one was coming. This is one of my all-time specialties. It's about curves, curves, curves. I'm gonna show you how to photograph a normal body as best as you can. Remember, it is just about making everyday woman look and feel incredible. And today, it's all about chin forward, shoulders back, working the hourglass, slimming the body line, pushing it back, using the weight forward. This is something I need you to master. This is definitely one of the hardest challenges, and yet it would be one of the most significant challenges that you'll have in your studio over the next couple of years. Our challenge today is making everybody look amazing. Well, that's our challenge for the month. But our challenge today is to shoot curves better. We need to shoot curves better. Now, whenever I see a camera pointing towards me, I'm always weight on my back foot, defining my waist, pushing my chin forward and down. It's always the first thing I do when I see a camera. If one ge...

ts me off guard, then obviously I don't always get it, but I'm always trying to put my weight on the back foot, shape my body and push my chin forward. And I've got this beautiful, curvy body here, and I'm gonna show you how to shoot her in the best possible way, because like all people, all people, they will buy beautiful photographs of themselves. Now, just recently a friend of mine was saying that she shoots family portraits and she said it's so funny, the mom will look at herself, and if mom looks good and everybody else in the family looks like crap, it doesn't matter, mom buys the photograph anyway. Yes! And I said, well, the cool thing about being a mom is you think your kids look good, even when they don't, so as long as you look hot, that's the most important part. Yeah. Okay, here's our rule. So, we're gonna pose straight to the camera and my live view, so that you can see that this angle... This is the mistake everybody makes for starters, is that they think that if everybody stands upright, they look really good for the camera and, of course, they don't, 'cause we all know that the camera is cruel, and it is definitely not this angle is gonna flatter our bodies at all. So what we have to do first is turn 45 degrees this way. As soon as we turn 45 degrees to the camera, we're not side-on. Okay, is is not a side-on position. It's 45 degrees, so we're opening the shoulder up and pushing it out and back. That's 45 degrees to the front of the camera. Then we give our hands a job to do, because when our hands are working, you can just put thumbs into your jean pocket, then, that does two things. It means relaxed hands, and it also means that we've got lots of good shape here in the elbows and we're bringing the arms away from the body straight away. Tamara's gone on her back foot already, so she's already pushed her hip away from the front. I'm gonna take a shot of that because you did that quite naturally. But let's have a look at the difference. So from here, now what I want you to do is push your weight to the front of your hip. That's it. And as soon as she does that, the front of the hip comes forward. Now, I always want her on the back, and then I want, that's it, even better. So as soon as she pushes out, it goes back even further. Now, second thing we do is I always hold the arm like this, and I pull down and forward. And now you can lean with the back of your arm, shoulder, on the wall, and straight away, her shoulders are now on a 45 degree angle, and I've got all of this perfect push-back here, I'm opening up through here, I've got a gorgeous line up her front arm. Her arm looks good, and once your arm looks good, everything looks amazing. So, from here, now I can start shaping her body. This is really cool too. I can drop her down even more, and her hip still pushes back through here. The more space I get through here, the more I show off her beautiful hip-waist-boob ratio. This is what we're trying to achieve. We're trying to achieve that gorgeous tilt where we have a line, breast, waist, hips. And that's the hourglass of a woman's body. So now, after I've got her into my little tilt, all I have to do is lift her up nice and tall through the neck and shoulders and bring your chin towards me and down. So, this way a little bit more. That's it, stay there. Now, have a look. I'm gonna retake the shot and see how far we've come in just this beautiful tilt. Now, all I have to do is give her a slight tilt back this way, and engage the chin falling down, and she looks really comfortable from the front. Now, I can shoot this here, I can shoot this here, and I can shoot this right up into here. And every single time, I'm getting gorgeous shots. So, just like that, one, two, three. It's about pushing the weight of the hips away from the body. Now you can turn your hips towards me a little wee bit more. That's a girl. It's really good. You've got this beautiful shape through the bottom of your chin, lifting up nice and tall, just tilting your chin forward, ever so slightly now, towards the camera and down. Now, from here, I can move her around, I can even do this. So, I call this tucking in the front arm. So if you just actually stay still and just roll towards me. That's it, stop. And all of a sudden, the front arm just absolutely goes straight into the wall line, and everybody wants to have nice arms. It's really important. Chin around to me now. All the way around to me, hon. Keep coming and I don't want you to squash your hair on the wall, but I'm gonna get you very close to it and I'm gonna just fluff up the hair. I love this top on you. And chin this way a little bit. You're eyes are going exactly that color. Ah, I love that. I'm gonna pull back here, and as you can see, I've got a gorgeous line, so just a nice, easy smile from this way. Now, have a look at the angle in which I'm photographing her. I'm gonna go to this camera here. I'm right on her eye line so, you know, everybody has this idea that we're photographing up here. This is so '90s. We don't do that anymore. We don't shoot from up here. Okay, it looks wrong and it's not, hey, I'm slimming somebody down, because all they do is look like they're looking up at you. And it's about tilting her body, and as you can see from this side angle, she looks uncomfortable from the side and she probably is a bit uncomfortable, but that doesn't matter as long as we get a gorgeous shot. Now, this is the same way I pose everybody to shape their body, regardless of their shape. All I'm trying to do is achieve the best possible line from the front of her body line. Now if you have a very lean body, you can't pull your hips away from the camera, because it makes the head look huge. Okay, it's really important and it's a really important change. Also, I'm shooting this on the 35. It has it slightly wide, so that focus on the face and the drop-away on the body works perfectly. The 50, I find, is a little flatter. The 35 is very subtle and it's a really easy way to slim people and it looks really, really good. So I start here with all of my basic rules. Look, here's another one. Stand up nice and tall. So that's when I recline. Straight chair. Okay, so from the front, this is what I do. Turn your body here. Now, I do this with everybody, okay? I call it the Barbie hands. Put your hands out like that, like they're on a tabletop. That's it. And a little wider, so there and there, both sides. Now, when I photograph somebody... Relax your hands down to the sides. I'm gonna take a photo first. Okay, as soon as I take a photo of somebody with their shoulders in this position, I know what I'm gonna do is make the arms look bigger and the body look bigger, because whenever our arms are beside us, we look bigger than we are. If we sit down and our arms are here, they're joined to us, so as soon as we take them away, it works. Check this out. Hands go out and flat, and both sides, and then we pull back with our elbows. So bend your elbows until they go behind the body on both sides. So we pull back through here, and what I do is I'm making her narrower all through her body. I'm pushing forward with that breast line 'cause it looks good. This tucks in beautifully here, and I'm not gonna shoot that. I'm gonna shoot this exactly here. Now, the one you've gotta watch not to do is the shoulders being pulled back too far. Come around to me a little bit more. That's beautiful. Now push your chin towards me, drop your shoulders down. Okay, now pull those elbows back. That's a girl. So, in exactly the same position, look at the difference between this shot and this shot. It's absolutely phenomenal. It's so much better for the shape of your body, and if you see that from the front, that cross angle there, when I take that crop, absolutely beautiful. This is where I shoot my cover girl. Now, you'll find I'll do this for all body types because I want to slim through that body line. Push your chin forward and down to me. There, that's it. Perfect, good girl, and just chin down a little touch more. Oh, I love this shot. Stay there. I'm just gonna buff up the hair and make this my cover girl face shot. Remember, I shoot everybody like this, this cover girl face shot. It's about having that beautiful face shot that everybody wants. Relax your mouth. Give me a little tiny, good girl. That's just perfect. Tiny little smile in the eyes. See where I am in relation to Tamara. I'm below her eyeline again. That effectively is shooting lower, and yet, she looks absolutely incredible. Her body line looks beautiful. Look at your eyes. (laughs) And I'm gonna show this, and show how beautiful and slimming this is. Just relax your mouth. That's a girl. And I love that. Good girl. And right through that shoulder line. Beautiful line, nice and pulled back. That's what we want. So, here's another one, another rule, but I'm going to swap over and maybe sit her down to show you this. So let me just stop and change this out. I think the most amazing thing about learning how to sculpt bodies to the camera is just watching how simply you can do it, just watching how simply you can change it, how simply you can change the body. So just look at this pose here. Stay looking at the front of that camera, and what I would like you to do here is to just bring your elbow there, and just turn it this way. Now, when the body is upright, obviously the bottom half is projecting forward to the camera, exactly the same as the face, and it does absolutely nothing for the shape of the body. I'll just take a shot and I'll show you what I love, too, about this is Tamara's actually got her left arm up on her knee, so it's becoming part of the outside of her body. All I have to do to change this pose is, first of all, is slide this arm against her thigh and all the way back. Straight away, I define her hourglass, and straight away I bring the shape of her body really nicely in, tapered towards the camera. Knees together. Didn't your mother teach you that? (laughing) And then, what I do is I get her to bring her knees away from the camera to me, so just your knees, set to go, move your feet as well. Yep, now keep moving your feet with me and then drop them down. Now, the further I bring her bottom half away from the camera, the longer and slimmer that she looks to the camera and the more that we can focus on that face. So bring your chin around that way, long and down. Now let me take another shot and we'll see how far I can push it. Something I do wanna do is make sure that this hand is creating a triangle in the front, that you can see some space through there, because the more triangles that we create, the more space and the more slimming. This is going around the hourglass, the chin is long and projected forward towards the camera, and now we're shaping, exactly like we were on the wall, a beautiful breast, waist, and hipline. So, from here, I'm shooting just on her eyeline, sitting up nice and tall for me, bringing your chin around this way. We'll go in, I can be right here. So, this isn't a short example, it's a posing example, so as you can see, I can see the wooden floor behind her, which is not something that I would do. But watch your body just come into play here, as you see that shape bounce right in. I can go just above the eyeline, too, and come down to here, and I can also sit right down here, and get her to push her chin forward and down toward, that's it, that's beautiful, down there, and get that long eyeline. What's really important is that I don't get this hand stiff in the front, that I get it down nice and low, that I see some space through here from the front, and that I can get her to work her shoulder and bring her chin around. So those three very basic 101 with curves, but what I really need to be able to teach to you today is to just take your time to sculpt their body. Take the time to see where she looks her best. I could push her bum even further away, so I want you to hold here on your elbow and push your bum back on the box, like that way, if we could go further. Further. The more reclined I get, the more shapely her body gets. Bring this to the edge, drop this down nice and low. Open your shoulder up to me a little bit more, bring that. That's it, bring your chin. And as long as you've got that beautiful shape through there, look what it's doing for her shoulderline. Her arm looks beautiful, her chin, shoulder, everything. Let me take a shot there. Okay, so just take the time to work through and have a look at what works and what doesn't. Now, remember, little bit of tiny smile in your mouth. Good girl, that's beautiful. Okay, turn this way, just a touch, and beautiful big smile. There you go. Big, big, big smile. Got it. I wanna real one, not a fake one. That's perfect. Now, watch it. Now, see what's happening here? I'm getting a dominant forearm, so I'm gonna let that one go down. If I'm this close, I'm gonna have to come inside that forearm line. Chin this way, and chin down now, and there it is there. So, really important that you do not let this whole shot get too crowded. Do not let this fall down. It's about stretching her whole body out. As you can see, from this angle here, again, she looks quite uncomfortable. It shows that she's projecting away from the camera with her lower half, so push the booty back. That's what you have to do. Don't let them get low in your neck. Make them lift up nice and tall through their posture. Remember, use your pinch, and forward and down, engages the eyes, the arms are always around the body. Keep on hands and make people look good, 'cause then they'll buy the photographs. Good, practice this, one, two, three, really, really important. Now I'm gonna take you through two of my other really, really great tips for shooting curves. So, here's a prime example of chin forward and down, how it works in the most incredible way. So, Andrea, I want you to lift up nice and tall through the top of your shoulders and push your chin forward and down. Okay, now, remember curvier the body is, the more it has to come forward and down. I'm gonna show you in the camera how this works, so that we can show you how to take the best possible photos of people without a double chin. Nobody will buy a portrait with a double chin. You won't buy a portrait with a double chin. I won't buy a portrait with a double chin. It is that simple and it is so easy to eliminate, so let's have a look at it, posed on the wall as well. So I'm just gonna get in front and take a photo first. And, Andrea, what I want you to do is just go back into your normal, relaxed knee position. That's it, stay there. Good girl, turn around to me just a little that way. Perfect. Now, I want you to bring your chin towards me. Oh, you need to slow down your blinks. Good girl. Okay, and that's a good tip, actually. That's how I get people to stop blinking. I tell them to slow down their blinks. As soon as I say slow down your blinks, they become aware of them and then they stop rapid blinking. Okay, so push your chin towards me and down. All right, now the best way to get this best shape through here, with your chin falling down, not just by pushing forward and down, is to create some space here between the chin and the breastline. The most amazing part is when you look in the camera at your chin falling down, your first one in a relaxed position, it looked like, in the camera, that Andrea has her chin up, but to me, it doesn't look like she does. So I want you to go 45 degrees to the camera, this way, no, this way. Good girl, stop. And now I want you to put your back foot out so that you can do a little tip forward. That's it. Now, as soon as you tip forward, you're gonna push your arm against that wall. That's it. And now you're gonna roll away from me with that shoulder. Stop. Not too far. Then, actually, I need to be doing this to the front of the camera. Okay, so stand up nice and tall. I'm getting all excited and posing you and I'm standing in front of you. Okay, let's step 45 degrees down on the wall, more, down, down, down. That's a girl. And then you turn this way from the camera, just a touch, so you're 45 degrees from the wall. You lift up nice and tall through your back and neck, so up through here. That's it. Now you push your chin forward and down. Now, the further it goes forward and down, the better it looks through the neckline, through the faceline. It just looks better. It's just such a simple motion to push back here. Push your chin forward and down. So let's look at it like this. As soon as I can see that, I can see that definition in her face. That's the beautiful definition that I want. Now, I want you to bring your chin around this way and I'm gonna photograph you here. Now, I'm just above Andrea's eyeline, so, just ever so slightly just above it, and what it's doing is it's pushing that chin forward and down. The more space I can create here, that's it, good girl, so I just pushed her shoulder down. And go back up in the front. I'll show that from the back. The more space I can create here by pushing that shoulder down, the longer I can make that space through there. And the longer I make that look, the longer she looks through her neck and shoulders. So now, let me take another one so that you can see just that subtle movement and how amazing that is to her body line. Let's have a look. Bring your chin around to me this way, and then forward and down. That's it. Feels weird, looks fantastic. I say that a lot. Okay, lifting up, nice and tall, Andrea, through the back of your shoulders, and chin down towards me. Beautiful, big eyes up to me, this way. That's a girl. Chin down, just a touch. And there it is, there. Let me just take one up here so I can show you, and there it is, there. Look at that shape through there. Wow. Isn't that beautiful? It's gorgeous. Yeah, and it's so neat because what you see is this arm just presses down. You get a really good breastline. Now, I actually photographed a couple of sisters, and this was a few years back. It taught me a really valuable lesson about shooting curves. One of them was, was during a time, probably in my late twenties, I put on a lot of weight and avoided the camera like the plague. And I photographed these two sisters, once, in Aukland, and they said to me afterwards, why did you only take photos of our head and shoulders? And I remembered thinking, A, I didn't know then how to take good photos of people's bodies, B, I also didn't have the digital component to help slim arms a little bit or do things like that, but, C, I realized the biggest problem was me, that I was judging somebody's body where I thought that they would look good and what I thought they'd like and didn't like about themselves. Never assume, with anybody, wherever they're at with their curves, wherever they're at in their life, never assume for one minute that they're not proud and happy with who they are and what they are just 'cause I wasn't. I wanna make everybody look beautiful. I don't care what they are, I don't care who they are, I don't care what their skin type is, if they've got scars or if they've got birthmarks, everybody wants to just look and feel fabulous for them. So work people, work with what they've got, work with how gorgeous they are, look at the hair, look at all of their things, that they wanna show you how gorgeous they are. Work with it, make them look incredible, so just work their bodies, work that chin, work that expression, and just really listen to what people want. This is one of the most important parts about being a portrait photographer. We're not trying to get everyone to mold into an ideal. We're just trying to make everyone look the best they can be. It's that simple. All right, I wanna show you another great trick from here. I love doing this, in fact, before I do that, I said that so I can do a couple of pull-back shots. So I want you to walk your feet away from you. Keep your arm on the wall. That's a girl. Keep your body turned away and back into me, sorry, back away from me. That's it. Let this hand go to there. I like that and I love this color on you. I want that nice and tall and I want your chin around and pushing out again. Remember, when we drop that we get that beautiful shape. I'm just gonna pull back, 'cause I didn't get this beautiful part of this top, which to me is the best part, is the gold. So I'm gonna come 45 degrees away from the wall. I'm gonna get you to push your chin forward and down, Andrea. That's a girl. Your are right there, right now. Okay, now lift up taller, and push your chin down. Okay, if you can see the difference between those last two shots, you can see that I did not get her on a really good angle. I was pushing down. You could see her face was pushing down, and I've got a blink. Okay, chin down a little tiny touch more, open those beautiful eyes up to me. Good girl. There you go. Chin down a little bit more. That's it. And I can go right down to the jeans line. Oh, look at that. Profile shot. I love it. Okay, stand there. Okay, turn your body towards the camera. Okay, always for boobs, remember, this is really, really important. Hold your elbows. Okay, boobs are squishy and they move really well, so sometimes when I photograph people and I think that they're boobs look really large, I get them to bring their armline in, and as soon as they do that, they instantly slim down through the arms and they cut down their boob line. It looks really amazing. So, from here, also, now what I want to do is I've gotta get her chin forward, so from here, I've gotta get you to go like this, but I don't want you to do it too much. It's just a slight tip forward, and that creates space through here, so pushing forward, long chin, that's it, chin down. There it is, right there. I'm gonna take a gorgeous shot here, and this is my cover girl shot, slightly on the 45. Turn this way. That's it, bring your chin towards me and down, Andrea. Push that chin forward now, down, down, down. Stop. Can you just take a step over this way? I've just got that line in the background. Okay, now push that chin forward to me, and down. That's it, stop. Okay, from here, long neck up and then, push chin forward more, and now down. Stop, there it is. Okay, chin down a little bit more. Just let a smile on your lips, open those beautiful eyes up to me. Good girl, love that big smile, girl. That's perfect. Okay, from here, let's do Barbie doll hands. Bring your hands down flat and your elbows go in and around your body, so you tuck them in and straight away, tuck that in back there, long neck, lifting up nice and tall, and pushing your chin forward and down. That's it, don't move. Chin down a bit more, down a bit more. There you go, good girl. Right there. Now, this is where, in the studio, I would definitely put a maybe a fan through her hair and I would put maybe some more color around here, 'cause I want to see this around the throat. I love this color on you, this one here. You could just wear that color all the time. And push the arms out again, hands out, Barbie doll. That's it. Perfect. And I can take two shots here. One is down the center line of her body, lifting your neck and shoulders up nice and tall and pushing your chin towards me. Good girl, and down. That's it, don't move, Andrea. Push down a little bit more. You can see I'm just above her eyeline. I'm here, pushing your chin forward and down a little wee bit more. Good girl. Sorry, my bad. And chin around this way. That's it, and I'm gonna go this way, so pin those elbows back to me. Long neck and shoulders up. Good girl, pushing your chin forward and down, down, down, there you go. Nice. Very gently, tilt towards me. Now, lift your chin up. As soon as she tilts towards me, notice the difference here. And then, there's a big difference in that tilt. So, to the front camera, have a look at this. Go back up to normal. You can see here she's in a normal position, and all she did was this, push forward and then lifted her chin up. See that space created there? It's absolutely perfect. So, go back up to normal. If I'm gonna be here, I'm gonna get this. I'm getting chin, I'm getting shoulders and arms. Sorry, blink. Now, just tip towards me, pin those elbows, push your chin towards me. Good girl. And then, I'm here. Push your chin down now. Forward and down, you've got it. Just like that. Wow, look at your eyes. Look at your eyes and look at your hair. (Andrea laughs approvingly) That's beautiful. That's great. Okay, just like that. Nice and easy. The tilt, it's about the tilt, okay? It's about bringing the tilt towards the camera and forward. It's about working and sculpting their body until it looks good. So I need you to work on two things with all curves. I need you to work on the ratio in which you are shooting. I want it around that eye level, and I need you to work on getting their ratio into your frame. Whether it's tipping away, tipping forward, or tipping back, this is what you need to work on today. Let's take some gorgeous shots of these two girls. From here, give me tabletop hands again, out there. Now stand up nice and tall, straight to the camera. Good girl, pushing your chin forward and down, and then tuck those elbows all the way back for me, but not the shoulders. That's really important. Now, pushing your chin towards me and down. So this is my kind of quintessential cover girl shot, as you well know. I'm shooting this straight into the backlight. I've got a reflector here, just bouncing behind me, just straight back to your face. Push your chin towards me even more, and down, forward, forward, good girl. That's perfect. I can see when that chin comes into play. It's really important that her hands are lowered and pushed back, too, and tuck the elbow right under there, and then back there. That's the one. Long chin, long chin, long chin. Down, down, down, that's it. Oh, I love that. Good girl. And I love that little smile. Let's have a look here. This minty green just looks so gorgeous in the backlight. I'm gonna go one this way too. Just push your chin towards me a touch more. That's it, perfect. Okay, from here, love that, love that. Horizontal, perfect. Now, what I wanna get you to do is I wanna get you to come to this wall, and no different than your first pose, I want you to drop down on the 45, so if you just go down, good girl, exactly right. Now I want your elbow down, and I want this space here, 'cause I can see light coming through there and it looks good. Push your arm against the wall. That arm goes around the body, and, Amy, I'll get you to come around to this side. You're gonna cross over that camera, but that's okay. I need the light. And just stay open and flat. Sean, can you see us okay? And now, I'm gonna be here. I'm gonna shoot straight back out to that white light. Bring your chin all the way around to me this way. Good girl. Wow, this is so cute. Okay, from here I'm gonna pull back and get the jeans. Tip your head towards me a little wee bit more, sorry. Tip your head that way, that's a girl. Stay there, stay there. Oh, I like that. Just keep that little smile. What I'm missing is your right hand sitting over your right hip, 'cause that defines your hourglass and the backside. Upper back. Good girl, and that's really important. Nice and tall, through your neck and shoulders, and just watch your hands in the front, splayed out, so just thumbs into your jeans. Good girl. Create some space between the wall and your waist, Tamara, so push away. That's good, perfect. Long chin towards me now, and this way. There it is, right there. Love that. I'm gonna come up and get one closer. Chin up to me now. Excellent. Love that. Okay, good girl. Like it, so easy. So easy, and so pretty, and then so simple, and that backlight is just absolutely gorgeous, just like that. So, have a look at this gorgeous dark that reflect this beautiful red dress. Exactly the same as you did the first time, I want you to go 45 degrees, turn away this way, from the camera, and I want your shoulder, arm, just to press against that wall, and lean. Take your weight on this foot on the outside. This hand goes up and back, all the way back. Good girl, that's perfect. And not too high, because we don't want the elbow to stick out. So, from here, let me have a look from the front. What I want you to do is turn your body towards me a little wee bit. Oh, that's perfect. I'm just gonna fix this naughty little hair. There, there you are. Okay, I really want you to lift up towards me, your neck and shoulders. Good girl. I want you to turn this hand flat to the camera. I'm gonna show that hand back there, and I just want you to bring your chin towards me and down. Now I'm gonna push you away from the camera a little wee bit, so come around, your whole body come around towards me. Good girl, and remember, the more space we put down here, the longer you get through here. So, nice and tall through your neck and shoulders, and push your chin down this way. There it is. So, from the front, I'm gonna take a gorgeous shot of you here, and I just want you to follow me around with your chin. That's perfect. Now your chin needs to come down to me, and then open those eyes up a little wee bit more. I'm just going to bunch a little curl here, right there, and I just want you to push your chin down here. Stop, don't move. Good girl, there it is. Wow. Stay there, and I'm gonna come back one more. Good girl. Chin down, just a touch, eyes open up to me. Good girl. So you can go, open the eyes up to me that bit, but I just need a little bit more smile on your lips. That's the one, perfect. Oh, this red is gorgeous! And in here, I'm gonna come in a little closer, and your chin this way. That's it. We're gonna be right there, perfect. Look at you in red, my dear. Isn't that fantastic? I love that. So let's do the one where you were at the front here, turn around and you're holding boobs, elbows. That's exactly right. And then, I want you to just kick forward, just ever so slightly. Just watch that your arms aren't projected too far forward, that they're tucked in, nice and low. Good girl, but hold your elbows, and then I just want you to kick out onto one hip. And then, that's it, so that you open that chin line up. All right, now, chin towards me and down. There it is, perfect. And chin down a little wee bit more now, just on those x's here, down, down, stop. Okay, I'm gonna have to have that with a beautiful smile. Chin down, chin down a bit more. That's the one. Beautiful, big smile, girl. Gotcha, good girl. Perfect. Now, what else I would do from here is I've got my side arm, I took a nice 3/4, I've got one laughing there, but with chin forward, I've got the arms wrapped around. Let's just do a cover girl, exactly what we did, so when you stand up tall and you put your hands flat, elbows come back, so pinning your shoulders, and then tip towards me. That's a girl, pushing your chin towards me and then down. Okay, chin this way, stop. I like that right there. Now, bring your chin down to me now. Good girl. There it is, chin down a bit more. Oh, I like that. What we need is a little bit more hair around here, 'cause I like big hair. That's a girl, chin down a little bit more. Ah, Andrea, this is gorgeous. (both laughing approvingly) All right, so just like that, one, two, three. Flow through your sequence, use your tilt, create space. Don't be afraid to push the shoulder down, to create the space, to constantly ask your clients to stand up tall, to push forward. It's about sculpting the body and it's about doing it confidently. It's about looking through the camera and then taking the time to readjust your position and their position so that it looks good. We don't just bang out 500 shots and hope that we get one. We try and sculpt them, move them, and make sure that they're lifting up tall, pushing their chin forward and down, constantly pushing weight onto the back foot, resetting that position. Your client is waiting for you to give them guidance, because they can't see through the camera, you can. So enjoy practicing those three moves. They're absolutely incredible, they work, as you saw coming straight off my camera. Easy, and I'll show you how to take them right through the editing. So, exactly the same as what we did first, I just want you to come up onto your right hip, so bring your feet this way. That's it, and then sort of come up, so you tip your bum up that way. Perfect. And all I'm gonna get you to do is put your elbow on the edge of that white couch, and then bring your arm forward. I think it's gonna be easier if I get you to bring your feet up onto the couch, or even sit on your right foot and bring your left foot over. See what feels comfortable to you. I'll move this away. So stand up and sit on your right foot. Now, as long as you sit far enough away from the edge there, that's it, and bring your knees around this way, perfect. Now your elbow just touches down. Remember, we've gotta create triangles from the front, so this top here allows for this, which is gorgeous, and I think it's beautiful. Just relax that hand down. Good girl. And this hand, of course, is going to get in the way if we don't push it back. I do like both knees together, so if I put this here and push this back, then you'll be able to bring this foot down onto that box, and I'll be able to bring your knees together. Okay, so that's exactly right. Now I want your chin to come all the way around to the front this way. So, here, I've got to recline, I've got Tamara's body pushing away. I've just gotta make sure I've got that soft hand here, and I'm gonna take a shot. Chin around this way. Follow me around, good girl. Now, to make this nice and beautiful line, and a beautiful, slimming line for her body, I'm just gonna open the hair up. I'm just gonna get you to bring your chin around to me here. I'm actually going to shoot down a little, so I'm only from above your eyeline just to show you the difference, and then what I'm gonna do is tuck her arm back towards her. This color on you is insane. Oh, and I love that little smile. Now, I feel like she is leading too much with this arm when I shoot up, so what I'm gonna do is I'm gonna get you to slide your elbow back, so it's sitting up under your boob there, and you have to come up nice and tall. Now if that's too hard to do, a simple way to create that would to bring your elbow to the edge. That's a girl. And I don't want to lose the space through here. Relax through there and, now, lift up tall through your neck and your shoulders, and bring your chin around. I felt like her elbow is projecting forward towards the shot, towards the front of the shot. So let me try that again. And now I'm gonna get lower. Now sit up higher, and your neck and shoulders, and bring your chin down further. Now that, to me, is incredible. I know I've nailed it. She looks great. So now what I want you to do is, I feel like you're pushing too far forward with your boobs, so just pull back through the center of your core, like back away from the camera. That's it. So it's almost like sinking down. You do that, and I'm going to take one more shot and have a look. And long chin up, neck and shoulders, chin down this way. Perfect, and there it is, right there. Chin around this way a little bit more, tiny little smile. Good girl. Lips together, that little, wee gorgeous smile. There it is. I can't believe, sorry. I've been a bit bad with my blinks this week. That's absolutely beautiful. Look at this color on you. I like it. So, we are trying to create length in the body. We're trying to extend the arms, we're trying to show off the hourglass. We can turn this away, so let's try just turning your body away a little bit more and seeing what we get. I wanna keep creating space here, but I need you to be tall. Sometimes soft couches are quite hard to pose on because you get really stuck down into them, and it's really hard to hold a really tall, long posture when you're sinking into the couch. So make sure you've got lots of stretch, lots of movement, nice and high through the neck and shoulders here, and remember that this couch then looks really amazing when you flip straight down and you shoot long style, lying down. So, let's do that. How 'bout you lie on your tummy, and I want your elbows in front of you there. Just such an easy transition into a nice shot. Elbows forward, that's it, flat down onto your tummy. Now I want you to scooch back. I don't mind if your feet go up over the back of the couch. I've just gotta make sure there's room for your arms. Your right arm goes forward, over that way, so over there. No, mirror me. This one goes forward over this way and your left one goes across. Good girl, stop. Lifting up nice and tall, bringing your chin all the way around to me this way. I'm gonna bring the top in on the shoulder, because I can, and it looks like such a beautiful color. And then, I'm going to to go long up through your neck, shoulders, and chin. Around this way a little bit more. So, easy transition, right there. All I have to do is push you high as I can, and then chin around to the front there. Perfect, don't move. Chin down, just a touch, and I can do an entire sequence right there. Now, this elbow goes out and your fingertips touch the back of your hair. Your chin comes around and down. That's it. And, oh, I love that. How gorgeous is that? Just like that. Now, from here, you'll see exactly the same transition is made. It's all about stretching and length. Go down into a comfortable neck position right now. Everybody looks good when they're lifted up, when they're tall, when their arms are extended out, when their neck's lifted up. It's all about posture, okay? Posture and space, taking what you don't want close to the camera away from you and working their body. I love sitting poses against the wall when you've got a little apple box there just to elevate your client, and I'll show you why. If you'd sit back with your back against the wall, now, so that I can take a shot of you, I know that if you're on the apple box, not the floor, you can open your bottom up. Your body up, not your bottom (laughing). So, if I'm sitting on the floor without an apple box, I know I can't recline, because everything I do is gonna make me shorter through the torso. So if I put them on an apple box, just like this, then what I'm doing is I can bring her around to the front. So I want you to scooch your bum, and I just want you to lift that cheek there, that's it, and then you can take out your shoulder right back to the wall, so turn your body towards me a little wee bit, and now lean back. If it's too far away, you can pull the box in. That's it, now lean back. Now, this hand instantly crosses over, but I want it here. Bring this foot around to me, Andrea, 'cause from the front, I want your knees to get in. Now, look at that camera that way. Okay, what I have to do is create the same recline down the wall that I get in a standing position. This is a whole different look. Let me come to the front and take a shot for you. What I'm gonna do is slide off. Before you do, I'm gonna be here, is you can see on this camera line, that I'm just above her eyeline, so if I take a shot here, now I'm gonna watch this as I slide her down into position. Now, that elbow slides back, okay? This opens up in the front, so you need to drop down. Good girl, a little bit more. And the more she drops down through there, the more length and opening up I can get through her chin and shoulder. Now to here, nice big hair, love that. And now, chin around to me this way. And now I can come down this angle, and I have a bit of recline, open recline, from here. So, I'm still above the eyeline. Now, long chin, pushing it towards me and down. That's it. I can tell it's not quite there yet. Seeing my angle, where I'm at, see how if you go back to the other shot, the first shot, where I've engaged her chin, I've pushed her down, I've opened her up. Now because she's on the apple box, I can move that down. I want your elbow to come away from your body, so push it against the wall now. Good girl. You can turn this hand around to me a little bit more. And what I want you to do is lift up through your neck and shoulders, drop down your shoulder even more, and then push your chin down. Now, I've come down to her eyeline now, turn this way, which everybody thinks is a big no-no for curves, but I don't agree. I think if I can get her to recline properly and push down, then I can work this pose better and open up the length of her body from down here, if I'm getting her to tip forward to me. Now sit upright. This is where everybody goes wrong. Everybody comes up to here, thinking that this is more slimming, and I don't think it is. Oh, I got a blink. I'll get one with that one. I don't think it is. I'm gonna compare both, although, what I do like about this, elbow back, is if I am this high, provided I can get her neck higher, and around and longer to me. So now, drop your shoulder down, then this is really good. Now, drop your shoulder lower, now push your chin towards me and down. Stop, there it is. I can see it as soon as she engages her chin down, and I still think we're looking up. It just doesn't work for me. I don't like this, so I'm back down here. Drop this hand, right down, elbow down, lift up tall. Create space for your neck and then push forward and down. There it is, just on the eyeline, right there. And then I can take whatever line through here and edit that I want to, so I want to show you how to do that. So, nice and simple, very beautiful. Love this color and I like the backlight too. If you can't stand and recline, simply sit and recline. Completely different look, just like that. I just absolutely love how much black is going in on this reflect and what she's wearing, because her skin is so milky white and her hair is just gonna throw this gorgeous color. So, from here, beautiful black dress, I'm gonna use this to cover girl from the front. So what I want you to do is put your hands onto your waist, inside the scarf, both sides, and you're gonna be squared to the camera. And I just love what this does, and it tapers the waist so beautifully. You can use a scarf around the arms, whatever. It actually looks incredible. Okay, I'm just gonna put that there. Now, the hands go in further and up higher. We define the waist where we want to define the waist. I call it faux-waist. You just create your own waistline. And I wanna crop this top of the head, just to the top of the hands, just like a real cover girl shot. So just bring your body square to me now, and one of the things that I want you to do is to push your chin towards the camera and down, really push it forward. That's it, 'cause that gives you a beautiful definition through your chin and neckline, in fact, a little wee bit more. Now, I'm gonna just show you a cool little trick. Chin forward and down, with a tiny little smile. Good girl. Now, I want you to take your hands to the outsides of your waist. That's it. And I'm gonna retake the shot. This is the weird thing. When you ask people to put their hands on their waist, they put their hand on their true waist, which is here, but I wanna create my own waistlines, so I'm gonna come in, so taper in and up. Now, interestingly, the eye follows this. If you kick back with your booty that way, now push your chin towards me strong, more, more. Now, have a look at this and certainly the eye picks this up as being her new waistline, which is absolutely incredible. I love that too. So, remember, we look where the hands are, so we wanna put her hands and shape her body, go to the outside of your waist again, if we put her hands out there, there's this distance here, and it makes your waist look wider than it is. I wanna define her waist. I wanna take it into here. I wanna show that off. It's an absolutely beautiful way to pose people. No slimming in Photoshop needed, because it's all in camera. Now, come in a little closer with your waist, so with your hands on your waist, come in closer. That's it. And just be very careful that you're not pinching fabric from the front. It's really important. Now, very gently, I want half a tilt towards me, chin long, long, long, long. So, pushing it like that. That's a girl. There it is, and every single time, whether I start here, okay, slightly asymmetrically, whether I do this beautiful face shot, and I'm gonna put lots of hair around here, 'cause you know I love that. Oh, this is gorgeous. Tend toward me, just a touch. Oh, wow! Okay, I'm gonna pull back to here and do my second frame, here for my third, pushing your chin forward, here, for my fourth. And, because I've got this beautiful definition, chin up to me now, really super model, pushing your chin forward. Good girl, love that! Those are my four shots, pulling back. Oh, look! (gasping) Yes. Okay, from here, I wanna do a really simple movement, just hands down to here, around, so just bring one across. That's exactly right. And I'm gonna get you to cross over and look over your shoulder at me, okay? And then your chin comes all the way forward and down to here. Okay, there. So, chin down now. All right, now I want you to go the other way and do it the other way. So just step back and just work that shoulder forward. That's it, okay. And then bring this elbow down, so elbow down in the front, shoulder forward. We're getting a nice line through there, tipping towards the camera, a slight tip that way, and I'm gonna shoot this this way, looking over the shoulder. Okay, now very gently, stay there. So when you do do this pose, which is one of my all-time favorites. Remember, with curves, this is going to have to be a tip with the whole body forward. Now, that opens her up through the neck and shoulders. I'm trying to create that space. Now bring your chin around to me, now, and down. It's not about tipping her forward to the camera, it's actually about tipping her forward this way, so that I can drop that down. Then I get this beautiful face and go, oh, my goodness, that's gorgeous. Now, very gently, turn away from me, Tamara. That way, no, with your shoulder, that way. Stop. Look back at me now, chin around. I'm gonna bring some of your gorgeous hair there. And then, chin down now. Straight down. Wow! Look at that! That is absolutely, you're gonna love this. Yay! Okay, chin around to me a little wee bit more. Okay, shoulder forward, leaning forward, shoulder forward, chin down. Chin down, and then give me a tilt this way. Wow! Good girl! Okay, chin towards me. Push it towards me, stretch out that chin. Okay, relax your mouth, push that chin towards me. Oh, yeah, yeah. Look at that. That is beautiful. It's about length. It's about creating. Now, a lot of people make the mistake of dropping this shoulder down here and getting that. Okay, I want the same, engaged, over-the-shoulder look, so I just tip you forward, and absolutely beautiful faux-waist, tipping forward, gorgeous shots. Let's have a look at them.

Class Description


Sue Bryce's 28 Days is the all-in-one portrait photography class that teaches you posing, shooting, marketing, selling, and everything else you need to know to run a successful contemporary portrait photography business. 

This series begins with two sessions of intense instruction on business, pricing, and overcoming your fears. Following the kickoff, Sue delivers short sessions exploring 28 different topics essential to any successful portrait photography studio. Sue covers flow posing, connecting with clients, posing and shooting groups, marketing to your key demographic, sales, and more.

In this comprehensive series you'll learn Sue's inspiring approach to styling, posing, marketing, selling and so much more!

Lessons

  1. Teaching 2 Photographers in 28 Days
  2. First 2 Years: The Truth
  3. Rate Your Business
  4. Year One in Business
  1. 28 Challenges
  2. Fear

    Don't let fear hold you back. Sue talks about devastation – real and imagined and how to pull yourself together and push past it.

  3. Price & Value
  4. Checklist, Challenges, and Next Steps
  1. Day 1: The Natural Light Studio
  1. Day 2: Mapping Your Set and Outfits
  1. Day 3: One Composition - Five Poses
  1. Day 4: Flow Posing
  1. Day 5: Posing Couples
  1. Day 6: Capturing Beautiful Connection & Expression
  1. Day 7: The Rules - Chin, Shoulders, Hands
  1. First Weekly Q&A Session
  2. Day 8: Rules - Hourglass, Body Language, Asymmetry, Connection
  1. Day 9: Styling & Wardrobe
  1. Day 10: Shooting Curves
  1. Day 11: Posing & Shooting - Groups of 2, 3, and 4
  1. Day 12: Posing & Shooting Families
  1. Day 13: Products & Price List
  1. Day 14: Marketing & Shooting the Before & After
  1. Day 15: Phone Coaching & Scripting
  1. Second Weekly Q&A Session
  2. Day 16: Posing Young Teens
  1. Day 17: Marketing & Shooting - Family First Demographic
  1. Day 18: The Corporate Headshot
  1. Day 19: Glamour Shoot on Location & Shooting with Flare
  2. Photoshop Video: Glamour Shoot on Location & Shooting with Flare
  1. Day 20: Photoshop - Warping & the Two Minute Rule
  1. Day 21: Posing Mothers & Daughters
  1. Third Weekly Q&A Session
  2. Day 22: Marketing & Shooting - 50 & Fabulous Demographic
  1. Day 23: Shooting into the Backlight
  2. Bonus: Shooting into the Backlight
  1. Day 24: Marketing & Shooting - Girl Power Demographic (18-30s)
  2. Photoshop Video: Girl Power Demographic (18-30s)
  1. Day 25: The Beauty Shot
  2. Bonus: Vintage Backdrop
  1. Day 26: Marketing & Shooting - Independent Women Demographic
  1. Day 27: Sales & Production
  1. Day 28: Posing Men
  1. Bonus: Pricing
  2. Introduction
  3. Photography, Style, Brand, and Price Part 1
  4. Photography, Style, Brand, and Price Part 2
  5. Marketing Part 1
  6. Marketing Part 2
  7. Money: What's Blocking You?
  8. Bonus: The Folio Shoot
  1. Photo Critiques Images 1 through 10
  2. Photo Critiques Images 11 through 27
  3. Photo Critiques Images 28 through 45
  4. Photo Critiques Images 47 through 67
  5. Photo Critiques Images 68 through 84
  6. Photo Critiques Images 85 through 105
  7. Photo Critiques Images 106 through 130
  8. Photo Critiques Images 131 through 141
  9. Photo Critiques Images 142 through 167
  10. Photo Critiques Images 168 through 197
  11. Photo Critiques Images 198 through 216
  1. Identify Your Challenges
  2. Identify Your Strengths
  3. Getting Started Q&A
  4. Rate Your Business
  5. Marketing Vs Pricing
  6. Facing Fear
  7. The 28 Day Study Group
  8. Selling Points
  9. Interview with Susan Stripling
  10. Emotional Honesty
  1. Sue's Evolution
  2. 28 Days Review
  3. Student Pitches
  4. 28 Days Testimonial: Mapuana Reed
  5. How to Pitch: Starting a Conversation
  6. Your Block: Seeing is What You're Being
  7. Your Block: Valuing and Receiving
  8. Building Confidence: Your Own Stories
  9. Building Confidence: Your Self Worth
  10. Pitching An Experience
  11. Pitching An Experience: Your Intentions
  12. Pitching An Experience: Social Media
  13. Final Thoughts

Reviews

Claude Bossel
 

Based in Switzerland, I am an advertising/commercial photographer since 20 years and I am still learning everyday. I have bought several courses on Creativelive, all are great and inspiring. This one is also fantastic, thanks to Sue and her incredible experience and wisdom, you will improve your personality, your attitude and skills that will bear many fruits in your business and personal life. I highly recommend anyone who loves photography or dream to become a full time pro to invest in courses like this one. Thank you Sue, thank you all from Creativelive.