What Women Worry About Most When Being Photographed
Yes, men have their hangups too, but I know from long experience that it’s women who worry the most about how they look in front of the camera. Statistics from Dove Research state that “80% of women agree that every woman has something about her that is beautiful but do not see their own beauty.”
So after 17 years as a portrait photographer, here are some of the things that women have told me they hate about themselves (why are we so good at that I wonder?)
- Double chins – “don’t show my double chin” has to be the most repeated request I hear from clients.
- Upper arms – another area that we feel quite sensitive about baring for the camera.
- Stomach. As fashion designer, Roland Mouret, says “Women would like to have a concave tummy.” Enough said.
- Wrinkles and under-eye bags/shadows. Apparently, no one wants to look older than about 21 or as if they’ve only had 3 hours’ sleep – the latter I can understand, but not the former.
- Not having a natural smile. Many clients say to me that they hate their smile or that they don’t want to show their teeth in a photo. Sometimes it’s because they genuinely don’t like their teeth, but more often than not, it just seems to be some vague misgiving that they have about looking fake if they smile or having a cheesy grin.
There is no such thing as perfect, but there is such a thing as a good photo. A good photo enhances a person’s best features and hides those things that perhaps they’re not so keen on – and I’m not talking about using Photoshop. Photoshop has it’s place, but in my opinion it should never be used to airbrush a person to within an inch of their lives or alter or distort them so that they’re unrecognisable to their friends, family or pets.
How a Professional Photographer Can Help
As a photographer, these are the things that I do to help create the most flattering and beautiful portraits of my female clients. They are deceptively simple, but are what make the difference between a bad “snap” which just seems to accentuate everything we hate, and something created with purpose, skill and passion (because I absolutely love photographing women beautifully.)
Working with a professional hair and makeup artist. We all love an expert – someone who can stand back and see how to enhance our best features so that they really stand out.
Posing. For too long the word “posed” or “posing” has been seen (by both photographers and clients) as something negative and to be avoided; how many photographers are there who talk about photographing people in a “natural”, “relaxed”, “unposed” style? The truth is that to get a “natural” look I need to pose you: to achieve a flattering angle, I need to pose you: to get a “relaxed” smile, I need to pose you. It’s the way that I pose you that will make the difference.
Recognising and using great light. Light can be a photographer’s best friend or their worst enemy. I use natural daylight only for my portraits. It’s readily available and when used properly, very flattering. It fills in shadows, and helps create soft, luminous and natural skin tones.
Talking. No one wants a silent photographer who hides behind their camera. I give my clients lots of direction so that they never feel at a loss as to how they should be sitting, standing etc or whether they ought to be smiling; because if you’re not a model by profession, then how can you be expected to know these things?
Here are some images from a recent Couture Portrait shoot I did in Guildford. The beautiful dresses are the client’s own and hair and makeup is by Marijelle Moreno.
Are you someone who hates having their photo taken? Have you put off being photographed because you dread it?
If you would like to find out more about booking a Couture Portrait session, then drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org or give me a call for a no-obligation chat, on 01483 571119.