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FAST CLASS: Posing 101

Lesson 4 of 29

Posing Parts: Shoulders, Chin, Eyes & Hands

Lindsay Adler

FAST CLASS: Posing 101

Lindsay Adler

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Lesson Info

4. Posing Parts: Shoulders, Chin, Eyes & Hands


  Class Trailer
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1 Introduction To Posing Duration:04:38
3 Posing Guidelines Duration:16:05
6 Posing For Body Types Duration:05:00
7 Posing & Shooting Flaws Duration:03:59
8 Male Posing Guides Duration:03:41
9 Couples Duration:05:10
12 Shoot: Mature Male Poses Duration:01:47
13 Shoot: Mature Female Poses Duration:02:02
14 Shoot: Boudoir Poses Duration:03:45
15 Shoot: Plus Size Poses Duration:01:57
17 Shoot: Mature Couple Poses Duration:02:17
19 Shoot: Bridal Couple Poses Duration:02:06
20 Shoot: Group Poses Duration:02:38
21 Shoot: Bridal Party Poses Duration:03:00
22 Shoot: Family Poses Duration:03:49
24 Shoot: Single Child Poses Duration:03:56
25 Shoot: Maternity Poses Duration:04:55
26 Shoot: Maternity Couple Poses Duration:02:15
27 Shoot: Same-Sex Couple Poses Duration:02:00
28 Shoot: Fashion Female Poses Duration:03:12
29 Shoot: Beauty Poses Duration:02:19

Lesson Info

Posing Parts: Shoulders, Chin, Eyes & Hands

So we're talking about shoulders and there's a few more important things to talk about with shoulders. So I was saying here whatever side is closest to the camera, remove the hair, elongates their neck. Also watch for body language. She's leaning back, so I can point to you all of the things. Why? So this is how I would like you, ideally, to train your eyes to kind of see these things. Okay, so in this photo, the problem we have, it's her arm is back here. So what it's doing is because her arm basically starts where the back of her body ends. Let's see. My arm is 2.5 inches wide. I added 2.5 inches on my waist onto my with. By doing that, I can actually see the back of her. So I'm making her look wider. The next thing for girls, you want to kind of see curve. I don't see any. There's no curve, really there at all. The other thing is, she's kind of standing flat footed and she's leaning back. So not only is her jaw pulled in, you can kind of see that on, but wrinkles there, But she also...

is apprehensive for the camera. So those are all things that if you just have some kind of ST up against the wall, you might have a problem with so an improvement, The things that I would then say I would say, Okay, I got to get that hand away. There's a couple ways you could handle it if you watch any of soup prices, classes. One of the things that she often does is she takes the hand this it would be this arm right here, and she puts it on the wall and takes the back of the hand. It kind of puts it against the bum and puts her elbow to the wall. So now you'd have the arm was a little bit. I would You'd have the arm out here to the wall, Okay? But maybe I wanted to do something with her hand here, so I had to cross it over just to make sure I could see this curve. But the next thing is, she's leaning away. So it's the body language isn't talking to me. So I had her put her weight on her back foot and lean towards me an arch her back a little bit. So that's what you had to do from here to here. And so what was the thing I said in my head? Okay, I want to see curve. I want to connect with her. Um, and I want my emphasis to be on her face. So that would be kind of the breakdown that I would have there. The most important thing to remember from men is that shoulders controlled broadness and basically, how big or how manly or how broad they look. So obviously straight on, they're going to look most broad to the side, completely to the side. They're going to look most minimized. It is going to depend on the guy you're photographing. What do you trying to achieve? So here's an example with a guy, and you actually got to see this perfectly. And I have the arrows. Okay, So what, you want to watch? He's a good looking guy. So he has a jawline, but you will see much more to find. All I had him do is he was kind of sitting back. I had him stick his job ready, see how it's much sharper. Like here. See this perv? It's a little bit of a curve when six his chin out. It is a sharp line like he has a sharp defined jaw. Now he already has a job. But if you have somebody that has a little bit of a double chin or not really defined jaw, it is significant. Chin neutral. Chin out, chin down. So you see significantly. That makes a really big difference. So it's a solution for loose skin, double chins. Okay, eyeballs. People forgets to pose eyeballs. They need to be posed. And what I mean by that is you definitely want to avoid seeing whites of the eyes. It's a really, really big one. So my my point is if the person is not looking at you, tell their eyes exactly where to look, always give them something to look at. OK, hands. This one is the one that everybody is like super stressed out about how to both hands. So we're gonna take a look at this is mostly going to be a lot of do's and dont's and then I'll just demo some with her and I can tell you one big thing that people mess up with hands is the posture thing because I put hands in the face and then all you see is arm and elbow. So leaning forward makes a huge difference, and it has nothing to do with hands. But it does, cause it's what's closest to the camera at that point. That's a big one that I see in portrait. So for women, you want soft and relaxed. For men, the most important thing for men is to keep their hands occupied. Um, okay, so at weddings, for example, for a second at weddings, I see this nonstop. Guys pose like that. They live. Yeah, you know, you got it. You have to The biggest thing for guys. You have to tell them what to do with their hands. Otherwise, it's uncomfortable, or they put them where they should be anyway. So women All right, let's take a look. Um, so one of the things I said was trying their hands caressed. So if you want the person's hand to be on, say their shoulder, I don't tell them to do this. I would say do this. I would have them actually dragged their hand across their chest to their shoulder, so these are obviously exaggerated examples. But the really important ones, the fingers shouldn't be straight because your fingers aren't straight when you're standing there, there of soft curve to them. Um, yeah, robot fingers. So what you want to do is I always have people just wiggle their fingers and say, Wiggle your fingers and placing back on your faith So someone's really stressed because some people do That will be stressed. I'll say, Okay, I want you Just wiggle your fingers in place some down real soft, Okay? Whether your fingers and trace them around your face real soft. That's kind of how I direct people to give me the hands that I want. Um, OK, another one. Watch out for hands actually covering the jawline, and I see this often in portrait of girls that are sitting and they cut the jawline. Now, at least if they have one side of the face visible, you can see the job. But let's say this is the side closest to the camp. There's no jawline visible, and we want to see jaw lines as photographers. It's flattering. So what you want to see basically, every time that you're photographing a hand, and I'm going to say that loosely. This is maybe, like nine out of 10 shots. Ideo. I'm looking to see this. I'm looking to see the pinky side of the hand. Not the Paul, not the back, not the thumb, because it is the most elegant and is the softest, and it is the smallest profile. So if you want hands to be in there but not dominant in the frame, that's what you're looking for. So those are the things that I'm trying to direct somebody to dio but related to hands. Another problem that I see is for shortening of hands, truly, for a good pose. Also I have of this I can see you can see truly for a good pose. You want to avoid the fingers, which is an appendage coming at the camera. So here it's a right angle because it's at the camera because it's wait on her hand and it's at the camera, so she looks like she is short. Fingers. Better is if she turns her hand to the side and instead of right angle, put it out just a little bit. So it's soft

Class Description


Try a Fast Class – now available to all Creator Pass subscribers! Fast Classes are shortened “highlight” versions of our most popular classes that let you consume 10+ hours in about 60 minutes. We’ve edited the most popular moments, actionable techniques, and profound insights into bite-sized chunks – so you can easily find and focus on what matters most to you. (And of course, you can always go back to the full class for a deep dive into your favorite parts.)

Full-length class:  Posing 101 with Lindsay Adler

Subscribe to CREATOR PASS and cue up this class and other FAST CLASS classes anytime.


  • Use camera angle, lens choice, and cropping to improve your poses
  • Hide unflattering problem areas
  • Address different body types through posing and wardrobe
  • Go for simple poses rather than extravagant ones
  • Pose couples, individuals, and groups to ensure everyone looks good
  • Understand the differences between posing women and men


Posing is one of the fundamentals of great photography. It’s also the thing that photographers have the least control over. We can choose our lenses, set up, lighting, and retouch with Adobe® Photoshop®. But when it comes to photography poses, we need to pay attention and work closely with our subjects to find the perfect pose and the best way to capture the most flattering image.

Fashion and portrait photographer Lindsay Adler will break down the fundamentals of perfect posing, giving you the basic rules you should follow to make your subjects and your photos look their best. Through live photo shoots and slides, Lindsay demonstrates the do’s and don’ts for every category of subject, including men, women, older people, couples, brides and grooms, groups, and more.

In this class, you’ll learn how to:

  • Connect with your subjects through sincere compliments, repeating their name and discovering their passions.
  • Avoid using negative terms that will make subjects feel ill at ease.
  • Master the rules of posing, then know when to break them.
  • Be confident when posing couples at a wedding whether it's a bride and groom, mature couple or same-sex couple.

This course is perfect for novice photographers just getting their feet wet in the world of portrait photography, but it also offers useful advice and techniques for even the most skilled professionals. By the end, you’ll be able to discover the beauty in every one of your subjects and bring it out for the world to see.


  • All levels of photographers who want to set themselves apart and up their posing game.
  • Professional photographers who want to learn new ways of posing women, men, children, couples, and groups so they can impress current clients and attract new ones.
  • Hobbyist photographers who want to learn to pose their family and friends.


Samantha Riegels

This is a great course for a quick reminder of things to keep in mind when headed out for a particular shoot. It's bullet points. General principals. If you are new to posing, you'll want a more in-depth course where she has live models and is positioning them rather than just talking about posing techniques. But for a Fast Class, I think this is perfect. Wonderful job, as always Lindsay!

a Creativelive Student

Fantastic quick but comprehensive summary of the key points for many different types of shoot. As always Lindsay Adlers delivers excellense. Brilliant