Updated: Jun 8
"Will you teach me how to pose?" “I am so awkward in photos!” “What do I do with my hands?" It feels scary being in front of the camera doesn't it? We feel exposed, awkward, and vulnerable, however these feelings, uncomfortable as they may be, are crucial for seeing all parts of ourselves through a new lens. If I've captured your interest, keep reading to learn why You Already Know How to Pose for Photos, our best tips from The Goldenbrand Studio.
You may think having a set routine of poses to run and keep rerunning on the fly is what you need. While that may be true, I suspect that:
You already know how to pose — you just don't know how to do it for the camera.
You aren't completely comfortable with yourself...yet
1. You already know how to pose — you just don't know how to do it for the camera.
When I meet Virtual Photoshoot clients for strategy sessions we take our time chatting and getting comfortable with one another while we talk about goals for our shoot. Since we meet on Zoom, we are both on camera, but they are not on the spot to "be on" for photos. While listening, I am taking everything in. Every little gesture, eyebrow raise, and head tilt that is uniquely them is stored in my brain to reference during our shoot.
My goal is to get them feeling so comfortable they replicate those little gestures all on their own. Making every image uniquely their own without using a contrived posing routine. Not every photographer works in this way though which makes it trick for you if you are relying on them to bring out your best.
So, if you're not a fan of running through the same set of poses over and over again what are your options? How do you learn to unwind, relax, and move your body naturally even in front of the camera? Self portraits might be your answer.
2. You aren't completely comfortable with yourself.
I suspect you are you are saying no to more than photos in your life and business. I've been there myself, saying no to opportunities I really wanted to sink my teeth into, knowing I could have nailed it, if only I weren't so terrified of being seen. I share about it in more depth here.
While curating research for the Self Portrait Studio course, I spent ages sifting through posing tips, camera confidence videos, selfie tutorials... Not only was this an exercise in frustration — it was all shockingly superficial, surface-level jargon. Instead talking about the root of the disconnection, everything focused on your insecurity and how you can fix it, for the best photos. No one was talking about why we feel that way about our photo in the first place.
Why? The short answer is, it's so much easier to put the responsibility squarely on your shoulders. To sell you on a quick fix that plays on your insecurities and shames about your body, your beauty, your age. The real truth is that it's not personal. You are not wired to feel comfortable in photos because up until this point your brain has been trained not to see yourself the way the camera lens sees you. The way the rest of the world sees you. Let that sink in for a minute. We spend an entire module on this in the Self Portrait Studio and it is mind blowing.
In my opinion women just have not had the opportunity and space to settle into themselves in front of the camera, to feel safe and empowered. Unless you know your photographer well and you have spent time with them beforehand, a professional photoshoot can feel very transactional. Add in the pressure to perform and the expectation that once you are in front of the camera you will know what to do and is it any wonder you aren't enjoying yourself? Finally, let's not forget the time limit. You know you only have the photographer for a set period of time, so you feel a sense of expectation to execute and perform.
Unless it is your job to be in front of the camera, how often do you actually have the opportunity to feel truly comfortable in that position? Posing for professional photos is not something we are taught to do. Yet we expect to be able to do it well and when we don't we blame ourselves, our bodies, our deservingness...Or maybe you have been shamed, called vain or told who do you think you are posing for photos?
Inside the Self Portrait Studio Community we start with a simple shift. Back camera photos only. In ditching the selfie cam we decide to commit to seeing ourselves as we truly are — the way the rest of the world sees us.
Here's a taste of what you'll experience inside the Self Portrait Studio
After completing the photo challenges and course, you will have so much freedom in your visuals. You won’t be waiting on others to create. When it is just you, your camera & your tripod you can create beautiful images whenever you have a creative spark.
You'll have photos that honor who you truly are. It’s time to know and appreciate the beautifully imperfect and entirely magnetic person you are, on the outside
Think of this as healing therapy through photography. Photography is my medicine. It heals and transforms. It lifts the limitations we place on ourselves and that others place on us. I’ve personally experienced this healing both in front of the lens and behind it. It is my hope you will too.
Join me inside the self portrait studio June 1 to take responsibility of your own image in front of the camera. We will cover everything from setting up to the final edit of your images. In addition to accessing the soft pressure of course we will also have my weekly sessions with yours truly plus a bevy of amazing guest speakers, workshops and master classes. Click here to tour SPS.
Lisa Haukom founder of The Golden Brand Co