A lot of people assume that models can easily pose and take photos of themselves when they’re building their portfolio or building their social media influence. However, that’s not always the case. Just because we’re models and we seem to be very close friends with the camera, there’s actually a big difference between photos that are professionally taken and when we’re making the use of our phone or a DSLR camera’s shutter remote.
Just to clear things up, when I say portfolio, it’s the one that you physically bring with you in castings plus your social media accounts that you use to maximize your online presence. While the latter isn’t too common when you’re a fresh face, it’s good to start building your audience as early as possible. Again, having a good online presence basically means that you’re going to be a great image and influencer for a brand– which is a plus factor.
Both modeling and photography are very popular nowadays. There are a huge number of people who consider themselves models and a great number of them also believe that they’re outstanding photographers. In a sea of people who are outstanding in this field, how do you stand out? The answer is the photo quality.
Photo quality is usually associated with a professional photographer. However, it can always be achieved with the right equipment and photo composition (and a little bit of creativity). When it’s for your Instagram and other social media accounts, you don’t always need a professional photographer. You’ll be surprised at how many influencers actually just maximize the use of tripods for their photoshoots! Although, you can always opt for the professional photographer option if you’re into that. But if you’re not, you can always take pictures by yourself. There are a lot of technological possibilities available and all you have to do is maximize it. It will contribute greatly to your career and it can even save you lots of money and time.
Okay, so maybe you have decided to be your own photographer. So, where do you begin? Get good pictures by being good at posing. Sounds easy, right? You’re a model, so you should know how to do basic poses that make you look good on camera. But the problem is, professional photographers know how to make you look good and can correct your posture and find your great angle on camera. But when you’re both the model and the photographer, that option is no longer available.
When you’re setting up your own studio at home, make sure that you have a mirror in front of you that’s big enough so you can see how you look on camera. The viewfinder of your camera can work wonders too, but if you’re looking for something that’s bigger, a mirror would do the trick.
Sometimes, studio lighting equipment can be very expensive. For striving models or new recruits, this is probably not on top of your priority list. According to professional photographers, natural lighting (i.e. the sun) is your best friend here. You can read more about it here: The Golden Hour & Photo Composition.
It’s good to use a simple, one-colored background that would be in contrast with the clothes that you’re wearing. Avoid backdrops that make you blend in the background or doesn’t make you pop out of the photo composition. You can actually DIY your backdrops. All you have to do is purchase textile fabrics, use curtain rods (or even jump ropes) to hang it on and you’re good to go. If you have a blank white wall in your home, you’ll be surprised at how much that plain white wall can do for you. Again, it is best that you don’t limit yourself to plain backgrounds since your portfolio needs to have variation, especially for your social media photos. If you want to save money, you can take the plain looking photos yourself and just leave the busy backgrounds to a professional photographer (or a very reliable friend!). It’s just good to have a paid and free option!
Things To Remember
First and foremost, read this article about 8 Things You Should Never Do When Making Your Portfolio. This is my advice to new models since those who have been in this field for quite a while probably knows this already.
- Smile your smile. It is natural and it can really reflect your personality. It should never be fake and you should never copy someone else’s smile.
- Elongate your neck. It can add a couple of inch to your height and won’t emphasize any double-chin. It can also help showcase your jawline and it shows confidence and poise.
- Keep your hands loose. Always make sure that your hands don’t look too awkward and they look nice and long in photos.
- Don’t press your limbs together. It will make you look smaller instead of long and slim.
- Do not wear clothes that hide your body or does not show your figure.
- Wear simple and light makeup that enhances your natural features.
- Be wary of casting shadows to certain body parts such as your face, unless you’re trying to achieve that look.
Although this option of DIY’ing your portfolio can save you a lot of your money and time, it doesn’t mean that it will always be the best option for everyone. You will still have to invest in a good camera that has a good resolution and can provide you with high-quality photos as much as possible. Not only that, but it also requires a lot of practice for you to be able to take your own photos without seeing the distinction between DIY and a professional photographer output. But if you think you have what it takes, then why not?
Tags: modeling advice, portfolio