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Shoot: Transitional Posing


Portrait Photography Fundamentals


Lesson Info

Shoot: Transitional Posing

How would you like to practice it right now, and go through it, and just show you what the workflow is, and then we can do it. Alright, so let's bring our beautiful couple up again. And let us go through that. So first of all ... Oh, can we get the light, if possible? We're gonna get them holding hands there. So you can hold hands. Okay, now you're gonna be kind of at an angle. So I don't want you facing me. Just a little bit of an angle, and then I want you to separate, and I want to keep that. So I like a little separation there. If you are doing an epic shot, where they're real small, you can't have them pressed together. You have to give them space and separate them, or else you're not gonna see them in the shot. So, the farther away you are, the farther away you have to separate them to give them some weight, or else you're gonna not see them. Okay, so perfect. So shift all your weight to the back leg, okay? And just stand relaxed. And if I can have that light a little bit more in...

front, that'd be perfect. And just a little bit higher. And so now they're looking at me, which is great. And then smile. Let me just pop my, good. Now just look at each other. Okay, good. And then just laugh hysterically. (laughs) You guys are just so silent. Okay, now let's just have one person look at the light. Okay so, yeah that's perfect. So, look over there, and let's move the light a little bit over to that ... I'm just showing you all the variations of that. Okay, so look up towards that light and smile. Good, yeah perfect. Love that right there. Okay, and so you can go through that whole routine, just with the holding hands. And now let's do it where you're kind of bringing her hand up like you're almost gonna kiss it. Like this way. And you're kind of, you're looking down at her hand, and you're looking at him. Okay, perfect. Right there. Right, and so we got that shot too. Okay, good. So that's holding hands of different variety. Literally, you could just stop there. Okay, I got my shots. But no, we have more for you. Okay, so the hip to hip. So now, stay in that position Ryan, there, okay. And then you're gonna kind of put your hip right here. Good, right. And then so you're gonna come out, and I'm just gonna have your hand right here, and then you're gonna kind of ... I need to see some space here. So yeah, you're gonna lean back like that. That looks beautiful right there. And then just move that right there like that, that's perfect. Alright, great. And so yeah, you can look at her, right there. And then I don't actually like the subjects looking at me. So if you can just look off to the side, that looks great, right there. And then smile. That's great right there. And then if you could just separate, arch your back a little bit more. Right there. And then look off this way. And just turn the light that way. Can you just come over on this side, so I can get some shadow there? Sorry. Making him work hard. Good. Yeah, right there. That's beautiful. Right, and maybe if you could just take your arm, where can you put your arm a little bit higher? Yeah, I like that. That looks beautiful. We're on a roll now. Now both look at the light. Okay, good, there, and then smile. Good. And then hysterically laugh. (laughter) Okay, hip to hip. Now what we're gonna do is, we're gonna exaggerate this hip to hip, okay? And we're gonna have you arch a little bit further, but I need to get you squared up like this, where you have a wide stance. And you're gonna kind of come in front a little bit, and so now you're gonna support her back here, and she's gonna feel like she can lean back, okay? So you lean back, and if you're gonna, you're gonna just lean a little bit forward, but keep your back straight like that. Beautiful. Okay, now you're gonna put your hand on top of his. What you can do to, yeah, because there's a lot of arms right here going on, so a lot of times you just put the hand on top of the other arm. And especially if he's wearing black, then it eliminates that, okay? And so, look at each other. Oh my gosh. Okay, so let's move the light right in the middle more. Good, look at each other. Beautiful. And then smile. Good. Alright, and then I love this shot, where, can you get your nose right to her temple, right there? And then look out straight this way, and let's get that light right into her eyes. Yeah, move over there, that side. Right, yeah, I like you looking up like that. Oh, that, that is the killer. And then actually, if you can get your ... Yeah, I just need to see your profile a little bit more, and just touch slightly right there. That's great. Good. Then both close your eyes. And then, can you pull back just a little bit Elena, right, just so I can see his profile. That's it, perfect, close your eyes right there. I love that right there. Okay, pull back just a little bit more. Yeah. Okay, good. So, that is the hip to hip. And now let's do the James Bond, where you're facing me, straight like this. Wide stance, strong. And so then you're kind of nestled into him a bit. Yeah, like that, right there. And you can put your hand in your pocket, right there. I love that right there. Okay, and bring the light in front a little bit more, and then you can both ... Actually, I love it when Ryan's looking at me, and then yeah, I like that right there. That's good. Actually that arm is just a little bit in my frame. That light, so yeah, perfect, thank you. Look at this. Bam. You could do this full length too, but I just don't have the room. But look at how strong that looks. Come on now. You're gonna get hired if you shoot shots like that. You just gotta bring them with you. Boom, alright. (laughter) That's a Hollywood couple right there. Alright, so we did that. Now we're gonna have the bride's back to the camera. Good. And then you're gonna do side light. And so you're gonna be close this way. Good. And you're gonna look off to here. And you're gonna look at her. Okay, you're gonna move over to this side, so you don't block his face. So you can physically move. Yeah, right there. Okay, now, what I love doing, is I love getting this side light so I can see some shadow on her cheek. So if you could just turn this way, that's great. Okay, and then if you can just step a little bit more, there, so I can see his face. That's perfect. Okay, look at this. So you can do this with a window, or you could do this with anything, like a doorway where the light is coming in, where you get that feeling. And so let's get that light a little bit higher, and a little, okay good, do that same pose again. You guys are looking great. Good. Alright. And then Elena, you can look just right up into this light, over here. Turn your heads this way. Let's do that shot again. A little bit more, your nose towards me. Okay, and get the light right where her nose is. Right there, good. And so I can get that catch light in her eyes. I'm gonna change the position here, to do that so you can kind of get the idea. Good, and then put your chin down a little bit, and close your eyes. Yeah, beautiful, right there. Okay, great. Now, you're gonna switch, where Ryan, you're gonna face this way. Yeah, I wanna see your back. Right, good. Perfect, okay. And so your back, you're protecting her, okay? And she's coming around, looking this way here. Great. And so you can look just straight this way. But, can you put your chin right there? Okay, perfect. So let's get the light over here. So, assistant, wherever her nose is, that's where you go. How's that? Perfect, okay. And so she's looking there, relaxed. And, I'm gonna position myself here so I could kind of see his profile too. And then good. And then look into the light. Beautiful. And sometimes you have to take a higher angle like this, so you can get that catch light in there. Looks totally beautiful. Okay, so that's the protector. You can go through all the whole entire routine again, with smiling, laughing, whatever, okay? And then now you can end with the hands holding, but you're facing this way and you're walking away. Okay, so you both face this way. And then, let's see. Yeah, and then you can ... Actually, why don't you look at her, and then Elena, you look back this way, over here. Perfect, yeah, right, got it. And then I want you guys, hold on a second. And why don't you guys smile, how's that? That's it right there. Love it. Okay, and so then how about you look at each other now? Perfect. Got it. And then, so you got that shot too. Okay, so, thank you. You got that whole entire routine, with the flowing of the protector, of everything, and the micro adjustments, and it's very easy to do. And now you have something. Thank you very much. Alright Scott, we have a lot of people, as always when we have models that we are using, to show us these different poses, and so we have people asking about, what if we have real world people? People who are not actually models, and know how to pose. Are you using these same concepts with them? Yes. I just did this posing technique with a wedding that I did, and they both were a little bit more heavier set, and which pose that really looked great on them, was the bride's back to the camera shot. I shot that with the side lighting, which was really great. And so if you do this posing, it allows you to do a lot of lighting that is not ... You know what makes people look flattering when they're a little bit heavier set, is shadow. And so, if you're not posing, when you're not getting any sha- where it allows for now shadowing, the posing is not gonna look great on them. Because if you just blast a normal couple, and you just have no shadowing. You just do on-camera flash, it's gonna look absolutely terrible. So, this posing allows you to pose in a way where you can use side lighting, and they will look gorgeous. No matter who you use with it. So I use this technique no matter who I'm using. I am just maximizing somebody's beauty, and it all works. And so if you're a little bit larger, you're gonna want shadow for sure, especially maybe in the arms. You have to have it, because it'll maximize a person's beauty. You might, the only option is, is that you can't get very aggressive with it. It's just more in a subtle way to do it. Because, when you have big people, and you're having them do this, and whatever, well I guess some people look great with it too, but usually just tone it down. You do the exact same things, and it looks great. Just tone it down a bit. Good? Yes, thank you. I wanted to make sure people understood this class is not just for models. (laughter) No. This is for anybody. For sure. Okay, one more quickly, because several people were asking, including Brian. You're shooting these at 1.8, and they're wondering how you're getting both people in focus. Very good question. The reason is distance, okay? Like I said before, download that DOF calculator on your smartphone, and you can put, dial in 1.8, and then put 20 feet away, and it'll probably give you about this much focus area depth. So the farther away you are, the more depth you will have, even if you're shooting at 1.8, okay? So, that's what you have to understand is, if you're far away, if you're 15, 20 feet back, maybe you're just used to shooting at a shallow depth of field when you're right here, when you only got that much depth of field, but as you move back here, you're gonna have that much. And you should be fine. But that's a great question. Do you have a go-to for when your man, the husband is a little bit smaller, and the wife is a little bit bigger? Yeah, what I usually try to do, is put them at different levels, like sitting. So, I could either have her sitting and him standing, okay, and I'll do that, or I could separate them by distance. So maybe I could have either way. I could have her in front, and him nearer the back, or whatever. And I'll do that. Or on the ground, okay, is a great pose. And, can I just demonstrate ... How much time do we have? Go ahead. Okay, real quick, is the couple here still, no? No, I thought you meant with ... Oh alright. So, I talked about this in other classes. This is another great pose, is you have the guy like this. Should I turn it this way? (laughs) Okay, so if you had the guy like this. The camera's this way, and you have the gal just sitting this way, crossing her legs, leaning into him. And then shoot waist-up. Easy peasy shot. So, the key is, if they're different height, don't make them stand. Or, have one sitting and one standing. And then you can do that. But, my other philosophy is this: they know they're different heights. (laughter) They're getting married, they know it, so what's the big deal? Is it a rule that the guy has always gotta be taller than the gal? Is it? No. It's just we think it is, but they obviously don't care. (laughter) So why are we making a big deal about it, when obviously they don't care, right? And I just go with it. If that's what they are, that's what they are. Having a fun session. I try to minimize it, but I have them standing and look at each other. One's taller than the other, fine. It's fine. We have a hang-up over it. It's our issue. It's not their issue. They love it, that's why they're getting married together. They don't care, right? And so, I think that's what we have to remember. We may think of an issue, but it's really not. But those are some ways to do it.

Class Description

Want to be able to go into any situation with your camera and have the confidence to know you’ll get the shot? Award-Winning photographer Scott Robert Lim goes in-depth on the four foundational elements you must conquer if you want to develop your creativity and style.

Scott will give you the guidelines you need to master:

  • Lighting
  • Posing
  • Composition
  • Post-Processing

Once you master these fundamentals of portraits, you free up your mind to get creative and ultimately get the shot.


1Class Introduction
25 Shots That WOW
3Four Fundamentals of Photography
4Create a Visual Impact with Composition
5Importance of Foreground and Background
6Create Depth in Landscape Images
7Photos Don't Always Follow the Rules
8Composition Practice Exercise
9Composition Critique of Student Images
10Keys to Posing
11Shoot: Classic Elegance Female Pose
12Shoot: Modern Female Pose
13Shoot: Rollover Female Pose
14Female Hands & Arms Poses Overview
15Shoot: Hands and Arms Poses for Female
16Seven Posing Guidelines
17Headshots Poses with Male Model
18Shoot: Headshot for Male Model
19Shoot: Sitting Poses for Male Model
20Shoot: Leaning Poses for Male Model
21Shoot: Standing Poses for Male Model
22Keys to Couples Posing
23Shoot: Couples Posing
24Couples Transitional Posing Overview
25Shoot: Transitional Posing
26Keys to Group Posing
27Accordion Technique with Groups
28Shoot: Accordion Technique
29Shoot: Best Buds Pose
30Shoot: Talk with Your Hands Pose
31Shoot: Lock Arms and Hold Hands Pose
32Run at the Camera and Dance in Your Seat Poses
33Shoot: Pod Method Pose
34Posing Critique of Student Images
35Introduction to Lighting
36Soft vs Hard Light
37Difficult Lighting Situations
38Bright Light Techniques
39Overcast Light Techniques
40Low Light Techniques
41Lighting Techniques Q&A
42Drama Queen Lighting
43Laundry Basket Lighting
44Make it Rain Lighting
45Smart Phone Painting with Light
46Mini LED Bokeh Lighting
47Choose the Right Lighting System
48Hybrid Flash System
49Innovative Accessories
50Gear Overview
51Theatrical Post-Processing
52Ten Keys to Post-Processing
53Essential Skills to Post-Processing
54Headshot Post-Processing
55Bright Light Post-Processing
56Flat Light Post-Processing
57Low Light Post-Processing
58Introduction to Fine Art Post-Processing
59Light & Airy Fine Art Post-Processing
60Dark & Moody Fine Art Post-Processing
61Post-Processing Critique of Student Images