So, you’re wondering how to look good on camera. Sometimes it feels like the holy grail, doesn’t it? Some people seem to look great in photos no matter what. Unfortunately, you’re not one of them. In fact, you become an awkward mess the moment somebody foists a lens in your general direction. Ho hum. We can fix that, so don’t worry.
In the digital age it really is useful to have one or two photos of yourself that look great. And put it this way: you don’t want to look bad on camera, do you?
Here are twelve tips that will help you shine on camera.
How can I be photogenic?
“I’m just not photogenic.” It’s a familiar lament. And it’s time to pack it in. Because the fact is that you can be photogenic. If each camera click feels like a lottery that you are destined to lose, there are some simple steps you can follow to stack the odds in your favour.
- Don’t fear the photo. Sometimes the idea of having your photo taken is enough to stoke a full-blown panic attack. Relax. It’s just a photo. The moment you stop worrying so much about the outcome of a photo is the moment you start to look more natural. And when it comes to photography, natural is always good.
- Don’t force your expression. There’s no need to affect a mile-wide grin. Your eyes don’t need to look like they’re about to pop out of your skull. Relax.
- Elongate your neck and push your face forwards. Ditch the double chin and let your jawline sing by standing (or sitting tall), holding your head high and elongating your neck. To put it another way: stop slouching. Pushing your face slightly towards the camera tends to get results.
- Consider a prop. Some people just don’t know what to do with their body when the lens is pointing at them. Cue over-thinking it and curious poses galore. Holding a prop – even if it’s just your phone or a flower – can help you look more natural. Bonus points if it helps to reflect your personal brand. More on that shortly.
- Wear the right clothes. Solid colours trump fussy patterns. If in doubt, subtlety is the way forward.
- Go through your favourites. Don’t even think about telling us that you don’t have any photos of you that you like. Dig out your favourites, write down what you like about them and try to identify any patterns. When you know what looks good, you can replicate it.
- Avoid alcohol and hydrate. While the prospect of a photoshoot may drive you to reach for the vino, it’s best to avoid alcohol in the days leading up to your shoot. Alcohol is full of toxins that aren’t great for the skin. Plus, it can leave your skin looking dehydrated too. Yes, it’s boring advice, but it really is best to glug plenty of H2O before your shoot. You’ll be glad you did.
How can I look more confident?
As in life, looking good in photos has lots to do with confidence. Unfortunately, confidence can be frustratingly elusive once somebody gets a camera out. Here are some tips to prevent the evaporation of your vibe.
- Be yourself. You don’t need to reinvent yourself to look good. Confidence comes from knowing who you are and being proud of who you are. By all means wear an outfit that you love and apply a little extra make up. But going for a totally different look in pursuit of confidence may have the opposite effect. Authenticity always looks good on camera.
- Stay on brand. Are you getting a professional photo taken? Think about what message you want to convey. How best can you reflect your professional values or the industry that you represent? Personal branding can be a tricky nut to crack. The good news is we’ve got tips for you here.
- Think about what you think about. It’s true what they say. The mind is a powerful tool. If you think about being relaxed or professional or warm or natural or happy, your body will normally follow suit. Unfortunately, the opposite is true too. So, nix those negative thoughts.
- Get used to the lens. We fear what is unfamiliar to us. So, get used to being photographed. Take a few selfies. Experiment with different expressions. Explore different angles. It’s not narcissism. It’s practice. And you know what practice makes.
Where to look at the camera for photos?
That’s an easy one…
- Look straight down the lens. Want to know what creates an evocative image? Eye contact. It’s a sure-fire way to grab attention and capture the imagination. So relax and try to look at the lens with warmth and authenticity. Imagine it’s your partner or your favourite pet. Whatever you feel comfortable with.
Over to you…!
Photography doesn’t have to be frightening. You already look great. And with a little practice you will be looking better than ever before in those paps of yours. Go get ‘em.