General Tips for Great Family or Individual Portraits

1. Slimming Stance

How you stand can instantly add or subtract 10+ pounds. If you stand with your hips shoulder width apart, your weight on your back foot, and your front leg slightly bent, you’ll create an instant slimming effect!

2. Don't Square Your Body

It makes sense. Standing straight into the camera can make you look frumpy. Standing at a 3/4 turn or even with your body to the side is much more flattering, especially if you’re with a group of people; it cuts your size in almost half.

3. Nose Forward Chin Down

If there is anything you can do to be more photogenic, do this!! Even if you don’t have a double chin to hide, it accentuates your jaw line. It is also suggested that you squint your eyes slightly.

4. Keep Arms Out

You’ve seen it on the Red Carpet a million times, and celebrities have a good reason for it. Keeping your arms away from your torso gives them more definition, making them appear smaller. It will also keep you from hiding the smallest part of your waist. One hand on the hip that is closest to the camera is popular, but if you’re not comfortable with that, just keep them from hugging your torso.

5. Relax

An unnatural smile is the easiest way to ruin a picture, making you look stiff and weird. If you have trouble with this, here’s a simple trick: Put your tongue behind your upper teeth and smile. Think happy thoughts and don’t forget to breathe!

6. Wear The Right Makeup

Because a camera is 2 dimensional, your makeup will look different on camera. Here is the essential list of makeup to wear for photos: Wear matte makeup; nothing that shines or shimmers. To lessen the shine even more, dab your t-zone with a tissue or facial blotting paper to eliminate shine, and dust a little powder on that nose! Even men on camera have makeup applied to help with reflection. Wear your makeup slightly darker than normal; especially around the eyes. A black liner and mascara helps make those eyes pop! Wear your lipstick a few shades darker than your skin. A little gloss is ok, too. Without any color, your lips tend to blend right into your face on camera. Fake lashes — They may not be something you would normally wear, but they can completely transform your eyes in photos. Don’t be afraid to apply your blush and bronzer a little heavier than normal. It will accentuate those cheek bones and give you a healthy glow. Concealer and foundation is also important for a flawless look. Apply it generously; it won’t show up on camera, but it will help even out your skin.

7. Add Extra Height & Body To Your Hair

Besides wearing a style that flatters your face, add a little bit of extra height to your crown, and volume to those locks. Hair tends to look duller and flatter in pictures, especially at the crown area. This will also help make your face appear more delicate.

8. Wear Camera Flattering Clothes

Although a lot of people like to hide under baggy clothes, they can actually make you look bigger, particularly in photos. Choose slim fitting clothes in dark shades. If you have an area that you don’t want to be showcased; ruffles, sheer layers, and draping work wonders in distracting the eye from those lumps and bumps.

9. Choose The Right Time Of Day

For outdoor photos, when the sun is overhead it tends to cast shadows in unflattering places; emphasizing lines on the face and bags under the eyes. The best time of day to be photographed is around dawn, when the sun is low in the sky. And, don’t forget to face towards the light!

10. Face The Mirror

When in doubt, practice! Stand in front of that mirror and smile, smile, smile. Angle your face in different positions to see what flatters you the most. It may sound strange, but it works! We all have a good angle, you just have to find yours and then work with it.

Clothing

Classics: Classic clothing, like khaki and denim, is timeless. What to Avoid: Avoid patterns (plaids, stripes, prints), white, red, and "trendy" styles that will make your portrait look dated in a few years. Tweed, camel hair, knits and even denim add interest without giving a "busy" or "cluttered" feeling. Coordinate: Coordinate a complete look, head to toe, with each member of the group. Coordinating solid color tops with jeans or khakis works well. The eye is drawn to bright areas in the photograph, so no one should wear white unless everyone is wearing white. Complement: Complement each other as much as possible, and keep things simple. No twins necessary, just looking great together with style and color. Dark shoes usually look better in a group than some in sneakers and some in hikers. But everyone in sneakers is terrific. Comfort: Comfortable, flattering clothes emphasize wonderful faces! And don't ignore feet - shoes show. Barefoot is always in style, especially for kids! Longer skirts & slacks are better than shorts and short skirts.

Color Choices

Here are some color schemes we have found that look great on any family: White or pastel colors are perfect for both light and dark backgrounds. Casual outfits in earth tones work best for outdoor photographs. Middle tones or deeper solid colors are ideal for formal portraits. Choose long sleeved shirts or sweaters rather than short sleeved. Grays accented with deep reds or burgundy. Very elegant. Mixed jewel tones--royal blue, emerald green, maroon, etc. Deep rich colors are gorgeous. Don't mix with light colors. Pastels--pink, peach, light blue, mint. Light and airy. Don't mix them with darker colors. Earth tones--brown tones accented with muted green or country blue also look great. All white--for a really modern and striking look. Everyone wears white from top to bottom. When photographed against a solid white background it brings all the attention to the faces.

Special Items of Interest

Bring Props: Bring something that will help reflect this special time in your life. Perhaps sports equipment, musical instruments, pets, cars, trucks, motorcycles, hobbies, etc. Please let us know before your appointment. No Cheese: People show expression through their EYES, the window to the soul. "Cheesing" for the camera wrinkles faces and forces eyes closed. Glasses: To properly light every member of the family, glare from eyeglasses is usually unavoidable. Those who wear glasses should either bring an old pair of frames with the glass removed or have their current lenses removed for the portrait. See if you can borrow a set of matching frames from your Optician for the portrait. They are often familiar with this request.

Choosing the Perfect Location

Back Roads: Drive the "back roads" to find an interesting place and ask the owner if you could be photographed there for your senior portraits. People are flattered that you’d like to use their yard! Look for Character: A deserted house, dilapidated front porch, untended yards with trees and un-mowed grass, fences, non-working farms with weathered barns and wood sheds, rusting junk cars and trucks, alleys, abandoned buildings, interesting architecture, areas with shade and shelter from the elements, locations that match your clothing.

Final Thoughts

Let your individual personalities shine through. Keep it fun! Remember, children quickly pick up on stress. While family portraits are very special, don't forget to take this opportunity to have a portrait taken of you and your spouse together. Have the photographer take individual poses of each child, as well as all siblings together. Have a special portrait taken with mom and the children for Dad's desk at work, and vice-versa. We always welcome your suggestions. If you have a special pose you want to try, we would be more than happy to have fun setting it up with you!
Pho ography Juhl

General Portrait Tips

Copyright 2005-2017, Stephanie Juhl  Juhl Photography  205 East Main Street  Watertown WI 53094  (920) 206-8668
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Pho ography Juhl
Copyright 2005-2017, Stephanie Juhl Juhl Photography  205 East Main Street Watertown WI 53094  (920) 206-8668
GENERAL PORTRAIT TIPS
General Tips for Great Family or Individual Portraits

1. Slimming Stance

How you stand can instantly add or subtract 10+ pounds. If you stand with your hips shoulder width apart, your weight on your back foot, and your front leg slightly bent, you’ll create an instant slimming effect!

2. Don't Square Your Body

It makes sense. Standing straight into the camera can make you look frumpy. Standing at a 3/4 turn or even with your body to the side is much more flattering, especially if you’re with a group of people; it cuts your size in almost half.

3. Nose Forward, Chin Down

If there is anything you can do to be more photogenic, do this!! Even if you don’t have a double chin to hide, it accentuates your jaw line. It is also suggested that you squint your eyes slightly.

4. Keep Arms Out

You’ve seen it on the Red Carpet a million times, and celebrities have a good reason for it. Keeping your arms away from your torso gives them more definition, making them appear smaller. It will also keep you from hiding the smallest part of your waist. One hand on the hip that is closest to the camera is popular, but if you’re not comfortable with that, just keep them from hugging your torso.

5. Relax

An unnatural smile is the easiest way to ruin a picture, making you look stiff and weird. If you have trouble with this, here’s a simple trick: Put your tongue behind your upper teeth and smile. Think happy thoughts and don’t forget to breathe!

6. Wear The Right Makeup

Because a camera is 2 dimensional, your makeup will look different on camera. Here is the essential list of makeup to wear for photos: Wear matte makeup; nothing that shines or shimmers. To lessen the shine even more, dab your t-zone with a tissue or facial blotting paper to eliminate shine, and dust a little powder on that nose! Even men on camera have makeup applied to help with reflection. Wear your makeup slightly darker than normal; especially around the eyes. A black liner and mascara helps make those eyes pop! Wear your lipstick a few shades darker than your skin. A little gloss is ok, too. Without any color, your lips tend to blend right into your face on camera. Fake lashes — They may not be something you would normally wear, but they can completely transform your eyes in photos. Don’t be afraid to apply your blush and bronzer a little heavier than normal. It will accentuate those cheek bones and give you a healthy glow. Concealer and foundation is also important for a flawless look. Apply it generously; it won’t show up on camera, but it will help even out your skin.

7. Add Extra Height & Body to Your Hair

Besides wearing a style that flatters your face, add a little bit of extra height to your crown, and volume to those locks. Hair tends to look duller and flatter in pictures, especially at the crown area. This will also help make your face appear more delicate.

8. Wear Camera Flattering Clothes

Although a lot of people like to hide under baggy clothes, they can actually make you look bigger, particularly in photos. Choose slim fitting clothes in dark shades. If you have an area that you don’t want to be showcased; ruffles, sheer layers, and draping work wonders in distracting the eye from those lumps and bumps.

9. Choose the Right Time of Day

For outdoor photos, when the sun is overhead it tends to cast shadows in unflattering places; emphasizing lines on the face and bags under the eyes. The best time of day to be photographed is around dawn, when the sun is low in the sky. And, don’t forget to face towards the light!

10. Face The Mirror

When in doubt, practice! Stand in front of that mirror and smile, smile, smile. Angle your face in different positions to see what flatters you the most. It may sound strange, but it works! We all have a good angle, you just have to find yours and then work with it.

Clothing

Classics: Classic clothing, like khaki and denim, is timeless. What to Avoid: Avoid patterns (plaids, stripes, prints), white, red, and "trendy" styles that will make your portrait look dated in a few years. Tweed, camel hair, knits and even denim add interest without giving a "busy" or "cluttered" feeling. Coordinate: Coordinate a complete look, head to toe, with each member of the group. Coordinating solid color tops with jeans or khakis works well. The eye is drawn to bright areas in the photograph, so no one should wear white unless everyone is wearing white. Complement: Complement each other as much as possible, and keep things simple. No twins necessary, just looking great together with style and color. Dark shoes usually look better in a group than some in sneakers and some in hikers. But everyone in sneakers is terrific. Comfort: Comfortable, flattering clothes emphasize wonderful faces! And don't ignore feet - shoes show. Barefoot is always in style, especially for kids! Longer skirts & slacks are better than shorts and short skirts.

Color Choices

Here are some color schemes we have found that look great on any family: White or pastel colors are perfect for both light and dark backgrounds. Casual outfits in earth tones work best for outdoor photographs. Middle tones or deeper solid colors are ideal for formal portraits. Choose long sleeved shirts or sweaters rather than short sleeved. Grays accented with deep reds or burgundy. Very elegant. Mixed jewel tones--royal blue, emerald green, maroon, etc. Deep rich colors are gorgeous. Don't mix with light colors. Pastels--pink, peach, light blue, mint. Light and airy. Don't mix them with darker colors. Earth tones--brown tones accented with muted green or country blue also look great. All white--for a really modern and striking look. Everyone wears white from top to bottom. When photographed against a solid white background it brings all the attention to the faces.

Special Items of Interest

Bring Props: Bring something that will help reflect this special time in your life. Perhaps sports equipment, musical instruments, pets, cars, trucks, motorcycles, hobbies, etc. Please let us know before your appointment. No Cheese: People show expression through their EYES, the window to the soul. "Cheesing" for the camera wrinkles faces and forces eyes closed. Glasses: To properly light every member of the family, glare from eyeglasses is usually unavoidable. Those who wear glasses should either bring an old pair of frames with the glass removed or have their current lenses removed for the portrait. See if you can borrow a set of matching frames from your Optician for the portrait. They are often familiar with this request.

Choosing the Perfect Location

Back Roads: Drive the "back roads" to find an interesting place and ask the owner if you could be photographed there for your senior portraits. People are flattered that you’d like to use their yard! Look for Character: A deserted house, dilapidated front porch, untended yards with trees and un-mowed grass, fences, non- working farms with weathered barns and wood sheds, rusting junk cars and trucks, alleys, abandoned buildings, interesting architecture, areas with shade and shelter from the elements, locations that match your clothing.

Final Thoughts

Let your individual personalities shine through. Keep it fun! Remember, children quickly pick up on stress. While family portraits are very special, don't forget to take this opportunity to have a portrait taken of you and your spouse together. Have the photographer take individual poses of each child, as well as all siblings together. Have a special portrait taken with mom and the children for Dad's desk at work, and vice-versa. We always welcome your suggestions. If you have a special pose you want to try, we would be more than happy to have fun setting it up with you!
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