We’ve all seen them – glossy depictions of the perfect body in magazines, strutting down runways and plastered on billboards. It seems like models can do no wrong when it comes to having their picture taken. But, what we don’t see is what happens behind the scenes. We don’t get to see the hundreds of unflattering pictures that the model and photographer had to go through before they reached the perfect shot in your magazine. Hard to believe? Believe it. So how do models reach those perfect, flawless poses that we see? Here are some great modeling tips I have collected that can help give you a more flattering figure in photos.
Want to minimize your broad shoulders? Slouch. Yes, it goes against everything your mother ever told you before school picture-day, but slouching can be a beautiful thing if you do it right! If you have broad shoulders, place your hands on your hips and roll your shoulders forward and down in a gross exaggeration of a slouch. Then, straighten yourself little by little. You will notice that once the exaggeration is gone, rolling your shoulders forward will make them appear narrower.
Do you have wide hips? Put your hands on them. And don’t merely place your hands on your hips – press your hands against them just a little bit. Give it attitude! This action will actually open up your back and shoulder region, making it appear broader. What this will do, is work with the bent angles of your arms to balance out the ratio between your hips and your shoulders and make your body appear more symmetrical.
Are you short? You may have noticed that if you’re short, you tend to look even shorter in photos. Why does this happen? The photographer is taller than you. I have seen it happen many times that amateur photographers (or even just a friend who is snapping your picture) will stand at their full height or crouch only slightly, completely ignoring your height. Taking a photo from a higher angle will make the picture appear as is you are being looked down on – a recipe for making your stature even more noticeable. Try politely asking the photographer to get the camera closer to eye level with you – or better yet, below your eye level. That will make you look even taller!
Have an understanding of perspective. Remember way back in your high school art classes, you were taught about perspective in 2-dimensional media. In a nutshell, things closer to the viewer are to be drawn larger. Those further away are to be drawn smaller. Because a photograph is a 2-dimensional object, the same rules apply! The closer any part of your body is to the camera, the bigger it will look. Meaning, if you want your butt to appear smaller in a picture, sticking it out as a default to look “sexy” may not be the best idea. Instead, perhaps lean your torso forward and keep your backside tucked where it belongs – in the back of you.
We can’t all be models – but we are all human. Even those men and women in your magazines are people just like you with bodily imperfections and stacks of unflattering photos. But now, the next time you have your picture taken you can be prepared with some of the same tips and tricks that they use to give yourself a sleeker appearance!