When photographing people, you can have a great composition, perfect light, and the right camera settings, but if your subject doesn’t look right—if the pose is off—the shot will not be a keeper. Posing is truly a crucial skill that photographers need to have in order to create great photographs. If you’re looking to improve your ability to pose your subjects—whether they’re men, women, couples, or groups—best-selling author and photographer Lindsay Adler’s The Photographer’s Guide to Posing: Techniques to Flatter Everyone is the perfect resource for you.
In the first half of The Photographer’s Guide to Posing, Lindsay discusses how the camera sees, and thus how camera angle, lens choice, and perspective all affect the appearance of your subject. Lindsay then covers the five most important things that ruin a pose—such as placement of the hands, and your subject’s expression and posture. If you can look out for and avoid these five things, your skills (and your images) will quickly improve. Next, Lindsay dives into “posing essentials,” outlining her approach to start with a “base pose,” then build on that to create endless posing opportunities. She also discusses posing the face—with specific sections dedicated to the chin, jaw, eyes, and forehead—as well as posing hands.
In the second half of the book, Lindsay dedicates entire chapters to posing specific subject matter: women, men, couples, curvy women, families and small groups, and large groups. In each chapter, Lindsay addresses that subject matter’s specific challenges, provides five “go-to poses” you can always use, and covers how to train the eye to determine the best pose for your subject(s). In the final chapter of the book, Lindsay brings it all together as she teaches you how to analyze a pose so that you can create endless posing opportunities and continuously improve your work