Forums > Photography Talk > Portrait photographers: do you physically pose

Photographer

Trisha Bowyer

Posts: 1311

Martinsburg, West Virginia, US

RKD Photographic wrote:
People never do as they're told, so I use one of these: invaluable studio accessory IMO...

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/5/5b/Photographer-studio-1893.jpg/800px-Photographer-studio-1893.jpg

Nice. I'll bring that up to management.

Apr 24 13 06:52 am Link

Photographer

RKD Photographic

Posts: 3265

Iserlohn, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany

Trisha Bowyer wrote:

Nice. I'll bring that up to management.

Fat-boy moustaches are mandatory too...even for girls...

Apr 24 13 08:25 am Link

Photographer

Trisha Bowyer

Posts: 1311

Martinsburg, West Virginia, US

RKD Photographic wrote:

Fat-boy moustaches are mandatory too...even for girls...

well, duh...of course they are. smile

Apr 24 13 08:28 am Link

Photographer

Farenell Photography

Posts: 18133

Albany, New York, US

Physically posing them can be a benefit if one has a shit ton to shoot & not a lot of time to do it in, like if you were doing school portraits or shooting individuals for a fraternity/sorority.

Apr 24 13 08:30 am Link

Photographer

Mike Collins

Posts: 1925

Orlando, Florida, US

I've shot literally thousands of portraits and pose people, by actually touching them, all the time.  I have brushed away hair on both sexes, young and old.  All I ever heard was "Thank you".  I straighten out men's jackets on my corporate portraits.  I move jewelry on woman all the time.  I fix collars on both sexes.  I move whatever I think makes the pose look better.  To this day, not one person has ever objected or got upset.  All I hear is "Wow, you really pay attention to detail!" 

You'll be there all day trying to tell someone where to put this or that.  Get in there, handle them, in a professional way.  People know the difference between creepy touching and turning a shoulder or head.

Apr 24 13 11:37 am Link

Photographer

Trisha Bowyer

Posts: 1311

Martinsburg, West Virginia, US

Mike Collins wrote:
I've shot literally thousands of portraits and pose people, by actually touching them, all the time.  I have brushed away hair on both sexes, young and old.  All I ever heard was "Thank you".  I straighten out men's jackets on my corporate portraits.  I move jewelry on woman all the time.  I fix collars on both sexes.  I move whatever I think makes the pose look better.  To this day, not one person has ever objected or got upset.  All I hear is "Wow, you really pay attention to detail!" 

You'll be there all day trying to tell someone where to put this or that.  Get in there, handle them, in a professional way.  People know the difference between creepy touching and turning a shoulder or head.

Thanks for your response Mike. I've shot thousands of portraits as well in a similar manner as you describe (fixing hair, adjusting ties and lapels and what not) but have only had to physically place them in a pose in very rare occasions. I would just get them camera ready then behind the camera I would verbally tweak the pose while doing exactly what I was describing. Probably made me look animatronic. Lol.  Which is why I thought I might ask here to see if that was as weird as I thought it was. Apparently...it's not. That makes me feel better about it.

Apr 24 13 12:14 pm Link

Photographer

Phantasmal Images

Posts: 616

Boston, Massachusetts, US

Preime Photography wrote:
There is nothing wrong with physically correcting a pose if it is done appropriately and always, always preceded with the question "may I touch you to adjust your pose". Verbal direction will only ever get you so far and whilst mimicking the required action helps a lot sometimes you have to fine-tune turn their head or shoulder position.

I agree with this. If simple directions do not suffice to direct a model into the pose, then I see nothing wrong with more physical direction. They can't see how they look, so sometimes it's needed. But I also work in EMS and I'm accustomed to touching people, and even frequently cutting their clothes off. So I don't have the common phobia regarding personal space which seems to be so prevalent in modern society. If I can palpate the ribs of a 16 year old female who was just in an MVA, then adjusting her head and shoulders for a pose is nothing in comparison. You shouldn't be afraid or nervous about touching people when it's appropriate to the situation. If you appear nervous or hesitant, then they begin to wonder about the appropriateness of your contact. That I think has more potential to lead to problems.

Or maybe my life experiences on the job have lead me to be completely out of touch with modern society, it's entirely possible I suppose... But I have never had any issues with a model being offended or questioning me about physically directing them into a pose when needed.

Apr 24 13 05:20 pm Link