Many photographers are intrigued at the prospect of creating glamour photographs but may feel that not having the “proper” equipment makes this goal unattainable. Nothing is farther from the truth. My approach to glamour photography doesn’t require a studio and, as Wilford Brimley might have said, “You don’t even need any fancy studio lighting equipment.”
All that’s really necessary to produce professional quality glamour images is a camera that accepts interchangeable lenses, a few simple photographic accessories, such as reflector and speedlight, and models willing to pose for you. Here’s a few tips that will help make your first glamour photography session go a little bit better. For the before and after examples shown here, the model, lighting, camera, lens and background are exactly the same.
1. Avoid flashy jewelry. Make your model’s face, especially her eyes, the focus of the photograph.
2. Ask your subject to wear solid colors. Nothing detracts more than clothes covered with busy patterns and prints. See last Friday’s post for more details.
3. Make sure the clothing fits. If a model’s clothes don’t fit, use clips or the old stand-by spring-loaded clothespins (out of camera range) to snug them up. This happens more often than you might think.
4. Change Hairstyles. Ask the model to style their hair differently for each change of clothing to add variety to the session and the photos that she can have in her portfolio. One of my favorite techniques is to have the model wet her hair, as shown in the “after” example.
5. Expression. Some models look great with a smile, others look better without one. Shoot a few test shots each way and make a determination what looks best for her. It will be obvious, right there on your camera’s LCD screen.
6. Make-up. When changing hairstyles or outfits, ask the model to changes her make up style and color too. It doesn’t have to be drastic, maybe a different lipstick color or darker eye shadow. I happen to think that red lipstick rocks. Ask her to try it.
7. The Right Footwear. For a more a statuesque posture, ask the model to wear her highest heels. No high heels? Ask her to stand on her toes for a few shots.
8. Relax. A glamour shoot is a team effort. Model and photographer must work together to achieve the best possible images.
Joe is the author of “Joe Farace’s Glamour Photography” thats available on Amazon and your favorite book or camera store.