Directing a model can be hard. You got into photography because you like taking photos, not necessarily because you’re good at directing people on what to do! It’s one of the parts of Photography I believe is often overlooked and can be on of the hardest to manage. Keep reading and I’ll talk you through some of my favourite pointers to help with a super smooth shoot and making sure you get the very best out of your subject.

  1. If you’re relaxed, they will be relaxed.

Sounds simple in theory when you read it, but often a-lot harder to execute. I ALWAYS keep coming back to this when I’m on a job. If I’m displaying a happy, relaxed nature throughout the shoot, the model will feel much more comfortable and will relax even more. Remember, they might be nervous too, so it’s time to put those big girl pants on and take control!

2. Encourage Movement.

Encouraging movement is an amazing way to start a shoot. If I’m shooting fashion, I’ll just say ‘Take a walk along the beach and pretend I’m not here,’ then follow them, ask them to walk back and that’ll start you off with a super relaxed and natural series. Then I’ll usually encourage them to move their hair or spin, this will generally end in them laughing and then away you go, you’ve cracked the ice and idea’s will start to flow. Chuck that drive mode on high and start snapping away!

3. Awkward is good

Since the beginning, I’ve always thought that ‘awkward is good,’ when it comes to posing. It’s a direction not everyone agreed with, but it’s helped me channel a unique style and framework into capturing my subjects. Encourage their uniqueness in a way that allows them to feel good about themselves, whether that’s being awkward or not. Traditional ‘posing’ is now outdated and cheesy, so it’s all about pushing the boundaries and discovering how you can make this shoot stand out from the rest.

If you’d like more on posing and directing on shoots, inside my Fearless Photographer Online Course, we have a whole module dedicated to Workflow and the actual shoot. This means I literally go through step by step everything from preparation before my shoots, what I do DURING the shoots (including my complete posing and directing guide) and how we wrap up and deliver content.

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