If you tend to look different in every photo – sometimes great, sometimes totally awkward – and you want to know how to look good in photos, then this is for you.

SOME people have their go to pose. You’ve seen it – a toss of the head, a little dip, the coy up-look. SNAP! Picture perfect.

Wish this was you? Here are five tips from a professional photographer for nailing a classic photo, every time:

  1. “Good posture equals great portraits”

    To capture beautiful images, slouching is the worst look. It creates frump and no form. You want the classic ‘chest out, shoulders back’ posture like someone pulling a string from the back of your head – it’s the easiest way to make you aware of your posture and lengthen your body. We all want long bodies right?

  2. Smile or no smile? Teeth or no teeth?

    Should you smile in pictures? Does a smile really light up a face? Can a smile make you look younger? Absolutely, laugh lines are most becoming and they show the real you – they make the shot! But how about showing your teeth? Be honest with yourself and check out your toothy grin in the mirror VS your gentle smile. If in doubt, get a trustworthy friend to tell you the truth.

  3. Surroundings & Circumstance

    A photo might not always be just about you. Sometimes it’s about the setting, the background, the time of day, the event, the occasion. Be it a wedding or a funeral or for Instagram, create the mood you want reflected in the photo. Try to create a situation or a mood where a candid smile /laugh out loud/ thoughtful expression can show itself naturally. Try to avoid the standard stiff poses that are century and a half old. Keep it real & connected.

  4. Natural beauty

    Always consider little bit of lip colour and a light coat of make up for your perfect pic but keep it simple. Too much badly applied makeup just highlights that there are flaws, whether they are really there or not. I also recommend avoiding anything glossy or shiny.

  5. Strike a pose

    There’s definitely an element of ‘fake it ’til you make it’ in taking a good photo. If you’ve got low self-esteem, it really shows so keep telling yourself “I look great, I feel great”. It’s worth making a bit of an effort. Studies show that smiling a fake smile can readily turn into a real smile.

  6. Turtle & Squint

What about a go to face pose? Try this .. chin slightly forward & down, looking back at the camera with a smidge of a squint. Nailed it!

And there you have it – smile, pose a bit, have fun and stand up straight. What about how to look slimmer in photos? As in photos, as in life, practice makes perfect.

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