Skip to main content

photo & video

Fashion Photography Posing and Lighting

Lesson 1 of 21

Class Introduction

Sue Bryce, Felix Kunze

Fashion Photography Posing and Lighting

Sue Bryce, Felix Kunze

buy this class


Sale Ends Soon!

starting under


Unlock this classplus 2000+ more >

Lesson Info

1. Class Introduction

Lesson Info

Class Introduction

Today's class is just about hands on posing and shooting, so we're just going to get straight into it. I really feel like when it comes to posing way still not leaning enough, we're still not doing enough, we still not practicing enough and I'm going to try and break it down really is easily as I can, so I've drawn you opposing manual that is based on fashion style posing so basically straight out of magazines that's how I learned to pose but then the problem was I learned to pose by reading and watching and trying magazine poses, but most people don't have body like a model. So then I spent ten years trying to adapt all of those poses to more portraiture and also to all body types, and I've spent hours and hours and hours teaching all body types icon twenty eight days, right up to curves right up to, you know, corporate posing, etcetera. So today we just kind of focus back on just the first fashion signal because this is the root of all posing and I'll tell you why the human body look...

s very short and very square and very block on camera, you will know it, anybody under five fourteen. That looks very short and wide on the camera and can be unflattering very quickly. As photographers, you've all picked up your camera and gotten a model in front of you or a client in front of you taking a photo and gone. Now there is a reason models a tall and there's, a reason that they tall and lame, and that simple truth is you khun, tune them on any angle and photograph them. Now that glamour photography a particularly beauty photography, fashion style portraiture is doing sort of the biggest comeback around the world. I really want you to lock down these poses so that you can then develop them on tio everyday body, short of bodies, give your bodies. But for now we need to master this. And this came about because I was photographing an ex model who was in him, thirty's who's, not modeling anymore because she's too old to be a model. But what she's doing is she's doing adv it's so she asked me to re shoot a headshot. It was a bit more mature and less sort of. This is what I did when I was twenty three and I spread a graphing here a month ago, and she said to me afterwards, I have never, and twelve years of modeling had a photographer direct may the way you did she's like, what are they doing wrong? And I said, well, it's not what they're doing wrong is you're a professional model, so your job is to get up there and do that without being told your job is to be styled and to work your body, your expression, your nick, your face in your arms and the better the model, the higher the fashion model, the bills she can move. But what happens when you get a girl that looks like a model that doesn't know how to move like a model? What does the photographer do? They freeze, and they do nothing. All right, so, it's, one of the hardest things to do, and I'll tell you also, when you all know this, you've got your camera, your models ready, you're standing on sit and you take your first shot and you look at it and it's bad, and then you realize that this person cannot move, they look pretty, but they cannot move. What do you do next and that's where I think everybody goes really, really wrong. So I thought, how can I break it down? So simply that you're going to remember what this is? And so I drew you a manual, and the reason I drew it is I want you to be able to print this out and use it in the studio and the good thing about a drawn manual a good thing about a manual that is actually illustrated is your not using other people's photographs you're not using a fashion photographs that don't look like the girl that's being photographed you're just using an outline so I've drawn fifteen on the biggest I think you end up on set and you don't know where to start and it's this moment where you were and then you kind people done it and we have this face don't we were like it's all fine we'll find help and you're looking at the back of the camera and you're like no no no no no I, um having something and I used like references from magazines but it's kind of like a torn out page from you know, you show someone cardo living there like I don't look like that, but, you know, just look at the pose yeah, so this is really so I feel like this is where you're going to start with each of your poses. So what I've done is I've drawn fifteen based poses based on standing full body clearly poses full, you know, sort of killed up, sitting reclining poses that and more fashion oriented and then I've done all the beauty posters, which includes hands now there's no lying down there's no portrait poses no boudoir poses, no reclining on the war poses these are standard modeled style poses. Now then what we're going to do is with fifteen, each of the fifteen base poses as we pose here, felix is going to photograph is many sequences of shot around this pose, so we're going to show you all the tweaks movements. Nick, what goes wrong? What looks good, what doesn't look good? What you can change with angles what you can change with hands, chin extension leaning back using his shoulders using your hips, using your body touch an expression to change the image and as he shoots it, we're building you opposing manual so you will have this image on the left and on the right. You should have a contact sheet of a least nine incredible shots, so we should be able to get to one hundred really great fashion poses and two segments and then you can build a little fashion manual where you can start with I know the basic fifteen. So the basics when I come back it had been another step is we have a beauty pose, which is basically the cover of a magazine, okay, it's mid here line to have nipple line, passport shot propst, rightly asymmetrical after the side and we've got different compositions, and we're going to pull back a little bit more and do all the standing posters, which is pretty much top of the here to just above the knee, which is that three quarter shot, and if you are shooting actual fashion because most people are just doing fashion style images, okay, so when you have to me, glamour photography was when you took a beautiful girl and you made her look like a fashion model that was to me what I was always trying to create in my work, but the thing is, is you don't always get girls that look really fashion, but when you dodo and when you're practicing, the first thing you should do is practice on somebody taller and leaner than normal because you're going to nail the poses first, and then you can start using short of bodies to lengthen them. But it's really important that you get this locked down, so every time we get opposed within gonna move around this pose and see how many cool images we can get around, they were going to build you a bit of a book, and so that you've got that to work on its infinite, it is infinite that you could teach every single day? Yes, you can, however, if you were just talking about the infinity poses if you were just talking about teaching people to move, you're going to go into the studio mix with your model and you're going to stop and forget everything we just told you so this is the way that island maybe my brain has more of a rigid structure than most people maybe I need something toe wit from, but all I know is if I've got somewhere to go that's my go to I can make anything work from there, but it's the first like that moment when you're like, I am not getting this right right now, and I need to do something that you can work on this. There is nothing wrong with taking a manual or drawing your own where I would sit with a client and say, you know what we're going to do with cassidy today is I thought would shoot something really sort of fashion like this, and my clients have always looked at my illustrations and seen my vision and gotten really excited like I've never showed them other photographs since it I'm going to shoot you like this, mario testino shot well, if it's somebody iconic like mario thinks I would show them and amaria shot or I would refer tio like marios diana, shoot let's do the black polo neck and the white natural light with the white leather couch but that's reference, but for me coming from a commercial standpoint and you have commercial clients, you don't really want to show them other photographers work that's kind of selling someone else in the pitch. So illustration, you know, I do this really bad thing where I mirror the poses and I'm a guy and then there's all these behind the scenes pictures that are unpublished off me in very ladylike poses to show people I'm going to do it but illustrations so much better. Yeah, that's, less embarrassing. All right, danny out. Cassidy had like, a food jacket. Yeah, she might need that because it's really quite cool in here and there's a food jekyll and there that's going to keep it warm. And I'm actually going to do this with no shoes on cassidy, if that's okay, because I don't need to depose and transfer the lighting this well, sure, we're goingto so if you guys watch the lighting challenge, we're doing pretty much very, very similar thing. Andi, just transfer it really quickly, but just go to the lighting blowing kisses me on so that you could show come straight out with her in it. Yeah. Oh, look at you so cassidy post for us, remember, and they create the incredible wit, charm and cassidy is a beautiful, tall girl, and she is not a professional model, so your job is not to show us all how to move and she's not going to move today, we're going to show her how to move so far, a scarcity is concerned, she's just going to listen to our direction and then do as we ask, not about you pulling out her own poses, and we're going to make her look a fashion and this beautiful as we can, right? You have a seat there, cassidy on, by the way, I'm in really high. How tall are you? Five nine so I'm five too, so when I stand next quickly without my shoes on that, how tall I am and the difference is somebody's arm span is actually the height, and so when you looking at posing arms and legs, you know, she's got seven inches off links longer in her arms and legs than me, and, you know, it's, just the way we made, and the thing is, is I can do so many poses with a long body. Now, I would even take a long cuvee body over a short kitty buddy because when you're five foot two and you're curvy, like, it sucks for us because we're the ones that get the worst rep in camera. And, you know, the length of the body makes a huge difference to the amount of poses I can do because you're going to see how much space I can put around her arms and legs because of their length seven inches it's a lot. All right, right. So we're doing the same thing as the lighting challenge. I'm just gonna run through it really quickly. A couple of you guys from the audience were here for that, right? Yeah. Okay, so what we've done again and don't get too bogged down in this it's just this opening that's always created. There are much easier ways of doing this, but we've used the flats to just block off everything back there. It's just I'll show you actually perfect. So, john, I'm not destroying everything. Yes. Okay. Okay, we have I've got an ellen cornrow deluxe. Remember last time I just used an umbrella it's not really that important. What? You stick on here as long as you have some light that's bouncing around in this white area back here basically to white walls and the lights just bouncing. I've just kind of placed in there. Not really thought about what happens in the end, john let's, go back to here. We've got an opening like this, you can use the door you know, it's like what? I keep saying, if you have a corridor, put a light in the corridor, use the door, put a scream in front of it, you're gonna have that kind of opening and that's just to replicate the window. And again, I'm not using a soft books, but that creates that kind of harsh little center spot. I wanted to be really soft it's bouncing around back there. I just put the light in the indiscriminately. It doesn't matter where you put it that long, it's not pointing directly at the model. All right, I'll let you put that back up. Thanks. Um good and oh, the other thing I'm tethering into capture one and I'm shooting tethered a lot now because I think the images that come off the back of the camera look really bad. You can kind of do those, you know those presets but I want to, like, really have a lot of control if you have clients on set and you see the screen also for if you think you know if you if you feel like the shoot's going well in the person's posing one there's a good picture, you show them on the back of the camera, right? So you can show them and even better version if you're tethered I don't use light room because I've worked with all the top photographers in the world they use capture one it's just pro level on it just brought up version eight so that's really I do not like that I knew you I do not want my clients to see the tibia the finished product of my image is in finish up I do not want my girls to be focused on what's coming off the back of their camera they will leave that you know a model will stand there and work, but a client will walk to the to the computer off sit and go and look at it every single time and also what they're seeing is a very high resolution very sharp image oven unretouched shot maybe I could have been so otherwise I well, the thing is is if my clients all look like cassidy, I wouldn't think twice about it, but when you get a real body in there and when you get somebody who is like older when you get somebody who's kirby when you get there don't want to see they don't want to see it they want to see the finished product you know I sit on my very first creative life when you order a bacon burger, you don't want to see them kill the pig, so there fact, I kind of think to myself at the end of the day my finished product is about what I've created in camera what I've been creating a shot even a two minute it it is kind I don't want somebody to see a double chin or you know, a little arm and then go I look horrible I look that if that comes into your head your confidence will just get sucked away and I want to empower them so I want to look on the back of the camera choose one image that's fairly close up with aaron a beautiful post with your body looks splendid, their faces and good like sometimes they even pump up my exposure by a couple of stops on the back of the camera re take a really good shot show her the back of the camera and I watched them go and that is based on it being a little bit lighter and a little bit more blown out they don't get that they don't see the light on deck they just see I look good this is working, I've got confirmation I look heart sick and I put it together at the end they walking up all the time and going like this walking up all the time only takes one bad photograph to ruin their confidence whereas a model they don't care, I see models walk up to a tea then no, I just feel like they just look, you know, I mean, it doesn't it's different.

Class Description

Bring more flair to all of your photographs with fashion-inspired posing and lighting ideas from Sue Bryce and Felix Kunze.

In Fashion Photography Posing and Lighting, Sue and Felix will show you how to direct and light a model to create a fashion-style shoot. This class brings together a master of posing and a master of studio lighting to show you how to create gorgeously lit and posed photographs in your own studio. Sue and Felix will demonstrate how to create three versatile lighting looks and a whole range of poses that bring the subject to life. You’ll learn how to work with a model who can’t move and how to capture the energy of one who can.

Create and capture the beauty of a fashion-inspired shoot – join Sue and Felix for your guide to shooting professional fashion looks and photography poses. 

Class Materials

bonus material with purchase

Master Posing Guide

Ratings and Reviews

Student Work

Related Classes



Spectacular class.!!! This is what it is like on a professional set. Time is money and the director gets the shot, Taking direction is the key attribute for the talent and crew.. That means tempers are high, there is humor and passion while cajoling the set to work together. The energy was amazing on this set. I loved their working relationship. Sue and Felix both have their vison for getting the shot. And they got it. I highly recommend this class.


Sue Bryce has what my Thai friends would call a teacher's heart. It is hard to translate but basically means caring, deeply knowledgable, dedicated to constant improvement and possessing the ability to present to students in an easily understandable and accessible manner. "Near enough" is never "good enough'. In a word she is a professional. This course is highly recommended for developing a framework for photographers to work from. Sue Bryce also has many additional pieces of inspirational advice along the way in terms of styling and costume. A talented teacher who presents practical steps that can easily be adopted by others. Impressive!