Working With a Model: Posing Styles

Image for post
Image for post
Example of dynamic posing

Happy 4th of July guys!

Today we will walk through older tutorial which you can binge-read here and it’s about working with a model. Too often on my masterclasses I see how photographer just waits for model to “do her thing” without giving her any directions about poses or mood. Meanwhile, model doesn’t know what composition you have in mind or what emotion you are trying to capture. Being left in the dark he or she starts to do a set of catalog-like poses to make clothes look good. Your job as a photographer is to co-create with model, give her/him your perspective as well as understand her/his own style.

So here goes a short description of posing styles I saw in my practice. We have 3 axis: Static vs. Dynamic, Posing vs. Acting and Diva vs. Artist — every axis of course is a spectrum, you will have well defined ends and everything in between too.

Image for post
Image for post
Example of static posing

Some models look best when they are walking/jumping/swirling or dancing, others can take one pose and give you small changes with every frame until you know you got a perfect shot.

  • Models with the static style do great with strong directed light and beauty editorials, you can give him/her very precise direction (chin up a bit, open you lips 1–2mm) as you approach the perfect combination of the angle, light and expression.
  • Model with dynamic style feels too micromanaged when you give her small directions — tell her what to do, but not how to do it (walk along this line, turn in the middle, let’s do this again). Their strongest suit is street fashion and everything that requires spontaneity. When working with them it’s better to give the right emotion and let body language follow.

NextUp: Question To Franziska About Her Biggest Project And Her Favorite One

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store