Shoot: Importance of Body Language


The Art of Body Language in Portraiture


Lesson Info

Shoot: Importance of Body Language

I'm gonna invite my first subject up. Come on up, Keith. Hey, good to see you. So, I'm gonna have you sit right here for me. Who's this you got with you? This is Pintler. Pintler, hi bud. Do you have a nickname for him? Pint. Pint? Well that's close to another kind of nickname that would be really fun. Yeah! So, tell me a little bit about yourself. Tell me you name, maybe... My name's Keith, and I'm on the U.S. Archery National team. Was wounded in Afghanistan in 2010. Since then, I've been medically retired from the Air Force and the Sheriff's department where I worked. Wow, so that explains your teammate here, I take it. Yes. Okay. This is my buddy. Right, so what are you doing now for a living? Sports, mainly you're just a pro athlete. Yup. That's pretty exciting. And, so the Olympics are coming up, but that's the winter Olympics, right? The winter Olympics are coming up. But you're on the para-Olympic team, is that correct? Yeah, the national team. O...

kay, so what, we have like two years before that happens. What's leading up to that? A lot of practice, and next year is the Pan Am games, and then after that is the selection year. OK. So there's five tournaments you have to go through. Then they take the top eight, and the top eight fight for the top three spots. Wow, so you've got a lot going on. I'm gonna have you rotate this way for me. Pint, can we rotate just a little bit, buddy? Good boy. Turn around, we don't need to see your butt. Come here, come on. That's what they say to me all the time. Yeah, I know, sit, there you go. Alright, I'm gonna have you hold your arms out for me. I'm gonna come in here and touch you. Nice, cool, and relax you hands down. Shake it off a little bit. Good, now I'm gonna rotate you back this way just a hair. Nice, good. And I'll have you come that way, perfect. Just look right at me, okay Keith? Good... alright. You moved? You moved. I moved? Alright, take a deep breath in. Relax it out. Good. Now we just got the hardest part out of the way. Good, okay. So tell me a little bit about what you're training is like. It consists of about 200 arrows a day. Whoa, what kind of time is that, time investment is that? Four or so hours. Four or so? Yeah, it depends on how fast I wanna shoot. Are you any good? I'm okay. What is excellent to you, like what's your bar? If you're a para-olympian, and you say you're kinda good. My bar? Well, it's indoor season so to shoot scores of 300. My bar is 300. So you're more like excellent, you're just being humble? No. (laughs) And does your little dog teammate here, Pint, go with you everywhere? Yes, he does. And he does this while I'm shooting. He takes naps. And what does that do for you, Keith? Keeps me calm, helps me keep centered. Okay. I have issues with large crowds. So being here is kind of a stretch for you. Yeah, but it's good. I try to do it to myself all the time. I do to, I do to. I'm not, yeah, I can relate, that's crazy. You have to push it, otherwise you'll be a hermit. Exactly, yup. Wonderful, so tell me, are you married? Yes. Okay, where's she at today? Home working, earning money. (laughs) So you have a Sugar Mama? Yep. That's a good thing to have. Yeah, I know. Alright. Well Keith, I really appreciate you taking time and making time for me. And I'm going to let you join the crowd again one more time so we can talk over how everything went.

Class Description

In order to succeed at being a portrait photographer, you must be able to look past the facade an individual presents upon first meeting, and observe their non-verbal language and cues to best interpret who they really are behind the artifice. This pretense isn’t intentional, it’s human nature. Rarely do people bare their soul to a stranger. Award Winning Photographer Stacy Pearsall discusses in this class how to gain your subject’s trust through genuine care, unselfish energy and intent observance. She'll discuss the art of communication, and the signals your subject is emitting, so you can best identify and capture your subjects genuine likeness. Visual perception is everything. Capture amazing and true portraits by learning to see the body language a person brings into your session and knowing how to gain their trust to show the vulnerability within.


a Creativelive Student

Thank you Stacy! I loved the class, it confirmed to me that I'm on the right direction, it's important to bond with your subject, and love what you do is essential to it, you can tell Stacy loves her job and she is passionate about it and a good teacher as well, it was very easy to follow her.


Stacy Pearsall is a communication genius! Her story is admirable, fascinating, and saturated with humanity. I was fortunate to be in the studio class for this course, and I was blown away by her charisma and powerful energy! She truly captures the importance of using unspoken communication strategies to draw out a subject and showcase what makes them special, AND to be mindful of the communication set-backs we can quickly create with our own body language as directors and photographers. This course is a must-have, not just as a portrait artist, but as a human being who communicates with others in general. Pearsall is AMAZING!!!!

Myra Hencher

I just happened across this class as a free video and love Stacy's charisma and knowledge. The communication information makes so much sense and can be used in all personal interactions. Thank you, Creative Live and Stacy!