Approachable Portraits | Style and Pose
The Importance Of Making Your Headshot Approachable – Business Portrait Photographer Leicester
Natural, Relaxed and Understated – Business Portrait Photographer Leicester.
I recently met with Peppy Ulyett for her business portrait photograph, a first time author wanting a portrait for the back cover of her first book. She contacted me as she didn’t want an air-brushed, un-real looking image but something natural and approachable. It got me thinking into what it is exactly that makes an image appealing and approachable. So many little elements combine from the photographers perspective that make the final image look ‘naturally captured’ but in fact takes experience to achieve.
This sounds easy to achieve in a photography if you tell some one to ‘relax and look natural’ it really is not going to have the desired effect. In reality not many people like having their photograph taken and being the centre of attention. Having someone point a camera at your face is often quite unnerving if you are not used to it, suddenly you feel awkward, your smile that normally comes so natural to you feels fake and strange, you don’t know how to hold yourself. In being told to do something with your body you suddenly become aware of it and strangely become uncomfortable and insecure about how you look.
It is very important for me to not to ‘tell’ someone to relax, just as with a child you don’t tell them to smile! You have to make them relax, you have to relax them. You have to talk and calm them, through communication you encourage confidence and as a result my subject begins to relax.
A Captured Moment
Clients arrive at a portrait session for a shoot, it is never going to be a ‘captured moment’ or a candid photograph. I would never be able to instruct my client to ‘act natural, this would guarantee the opposite! A captured moment is taken when the subject is completely unaware of my presence. These shots are instinctive and are quite often taken in a split second when my client has forgotten they are having their photograph taken, it is a tiny change in their facial expression, a relaxation of the mouth or brow and it really is a very very tiny change but if you can capture it then you have it.
Sit Straight, Sit up!
You are not going to achieve a relaxed and natural portrait by over posing someone. Everybody is different in how they hold themselves and how comfortable they feel. There are some very good go-to poses that will instantly relax my client, but not all work for everyone, these poses don’t require effort from my client or make them feel uncomfortable, a natural pose is achieved through the session and finding that perfect pose that sits most comfortably with that person because once they relax, my portrait will look relaxed.
A portrait is a very personal object, what makes you you? What I see in your portrait as a photographer my be very different to how you see yourself and how family and friends see you. Capturing an image that my clients are happy with requires photographing my client being themselves, expressing themselves and being comfortable in themselves. This doesn’t happen at the beginning of the shoot, it is usually at the end when they are the most at ease.
So I am not entirely sure which image will feature on the back of Peppy’s new book but she chose the two images featured above, I will wait and see!
If you are interested in my business portrait photography service in leicester, you can contact me for information HERE. I promise it won’t be as painful experience as you imagine it to be!