How To Get Over Being Awkward In Photos
Ninety percent of all my photography clients say the exact same thing right before their session starts. Any guesses?
It's always some sort of variation of this statement:
"I'm so awkward in photos...hopefully we can get a handful that I don't look terrible in"
Guess what? Unless you're a professional model (and who knows? maybe even then), pictures always ALWAYS feel awkward for at least part of your session.
It's because we are worrying so much about how we'll look in photos that we end up looking like a mix between constipated and really really hangry.
SO HOW TO FIX IT?
1. Choose an outfit that you feel REALLY good in. don't choose your photoshoot to be
the time that you step WAY out of your comfort box with. You should be choosing something that is indicative of who you are while also making you feel beautiful and comfortable. Clothing matters, people. It's amazing for your self esteem when you get in an outfit and feel really good in it. (**extra tip** video yourself in the outfit, move around, bend down, do all the things and see if you're still loving the outfit after that)
2. Practice facial expressions in the mirror or on your phone. Okay this one sounds like I'm asking you to channel your inner influencer or 15 year old getting ready to send the perfect snap chat to her secret boyfriend but stay with me here. Sometimes we feel like we're smiling, and then we see a picture of ourselves and think "ew why did I smile like I'm a total creeper asking kids if they want free candy while driving around in a windowless van?" Look in the mirror or in your phone and pay attention to which angles make you feel the best. Do you feel like you have a double chin when you laugh? Play around with what way you can turn to have that double chin less noticeable. Do you like your smile better with teeth or no teeth? Some people swear they honestly have a side of their face that's better than the other. I never see it but when my clients mention in...guess what I do? I pose them so that we get their "good side" because it's not about my opinion. It's about what makes YOU feel the prettiest and the most confident during your pictures.
3. Express your insecurities to your photographer before the shoot starts. Do you feel really self conscious in sitting pictures because you feel like those extra covid cupcakes are showing up in your tummy area? Tell your photographer. Are you self conscious about how tall you are compared to your significant other? Did you break out right before your session because preparing for pictures is SO stressful and now you have a giant pimple on your chin? TELL YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER. They can pose you in ways that complement the things you feel confident about and they can help you lessen the visibility of those things you feel self conscious about. Communication is key here guys.
4. Tell your photographer how you're feeling during your shoot. Okay this one is so important. I know a lot of you are peace keepers. The type that doesn't ask for a new plate of food when yours is overcooked because you don't want to rock the boat. But guess what? You are the client who paid for this shoot. So if you're feeling uncomfortable with a pose or you're just really not vibing with the photographer, express that as soon as it's happening during the shoot. If they pose you in a way that makes you feel awkward, tell them right then. I always preface with my clients to tell me no if they ever aren't digging a pose. And every time they tell me, I get SO happy. Yep. I'm a weirdo that LOVES when my client says "no thanks" to a pose or idea I have during a session. 1) because it means they feel comfortable enough to be honest with me and 2) I have no desire to waste time on a pose that you're going to hate anyway.
And if that was just WAY too much information to process, I made this little cheat sheet to help you remember the bullet points. Try it out and let me know how it goes in the comments below!