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Top 8 Tips for Beginner Models

As an experienced model and now talent manager for ModelAgency, I have spent the last couple of years finding out a few things that I wish I’d known from the start. Please don’t think I’m patronising as I mean this only in goodwill, as there is absolutely no gain for me by sharing these cheats. Not all of my points will be valid for you as posing varies in each genre. Just take what you can and ignore the rest. If only one suggestion helps your future career then my time has been well spent…

Rule 1: Mirror is your best friend

Stand in front of your mirror, perfect your poses and learn how your body shapes. The mirror is a perfect tool to show you what the camera can see – try to imagine it behind your photographers head when shooting and always consider what can be seen from that angle. For example, if your foot is closest to the lens, it is worth remembering that your foot is going to the largest thing in the picture….and nobody wants to be remembered as Bigfoot…

Rule 2: Hold your arms away from your body when shooting

It is important to create separation between your limbs from your body. Not only does it prevent the arm/leg from being squashed against you spreading out any fat, it is also an optical illusion for a slimmer appearance in terms of overall width. A basic cheat that makes a massive difference.

Rule 3: Have a basic understanding of light

For example, if you raise an arm to the light, it could be a whole F-stop brighter in camera than your face (being the object closest to the source of light according to the inverse square law). It will also cast a shadow across you. You can counteract this by using your other arm (!)…or, move your arm a fraction backwards, away from the direct beam of light. Learning how lighting falls is invaluable. Ask which is your key light and then work towards it.

Rule 4: Don’t rotate your head too much.

You should know how far you can turn your head before your nose ‘breaks your cheek’. Go back to the mirror to see what angle becomes too far. This is perhaps a dying rule, but one that many competition judges still take into account so worth being aware of. When it comes to your eye position (which is also an important rule), it is always advisable to follow the line of your nose to keep your sight central. This stops you from looking bog eyed from too much white of the eye showing.

Rule 5: Learn how to control your neck.

This rule implies elongating your neck to simulate height and poise. Possibly one of the hardest things to remember because it genuinely feels unnatural. Stand in front of the mirror and look at yourself…stand normally, then roll your shoulders back allowing your face to come forward…notice the difference in the width of your neck? An instant slimming trick.

You can also go one step further by popping your jaw towards camera if you want a strong line created by the shadow. If the photographer is at a 12 o’clock angle, then standing angled at 1:30 rather than 3 o’clock will lose inches to your overall width. When you do, make sure it is shadow you are turning into and not the light. Always one rule: hide what you don’t want seen in shadow. Forget Weight Watchers, it’s all about tactical posing!

Rule 6: Learn how to control your neck and appear to look slim.

This rule implies elongating your neck to simulate height and poise. Possibly one of the hardest things to remember because it genuinely feels unnatural. Stand in front of the mirror and look at yourself…stand normally, then roll your shoulders back allowing your face to come forward…notice the difference in the width of your neck? An instant slimming trick.

If you want to appear slimmer you can create a ‘false waist’. You can do this by positioning yourself to camera, then creating the waist you want seen with the positioning of your hands on your ‘hips’.

If you’re like me and you don’t have natural curves, then fake them! And I don’t mean plastic surgery. As shown above, learning how to pop your hip is not something everyone can do but can be a big advantage if you can for great shape. Allowing your knees to cross slightly will emphasise that ‘S’ figure with it.

Rule 7: Keep your hands loose and fluid.

Remember not to clump your fingers together and avoid showing the back of your hand. Why? Because backs of hands are big and ugly…sides of hands are small and dainty. This was drilled into me from the start of my career by friend and photographer Harry Hill.

Rule 8: Use what you have

If you are wearing a flowing dress, play with it by tossing it into the air or working the movement in the bottom. Remember if you are wearing trousers then your legs don’t need to be so clamped together. You should have knowledge of what you are wearing and why. If you have been hired to sell a specific product, make sure you are pulling poses that are commercially complimentary and not hiding the product.

Most of all be fun, easy going and willing to go that extra mile! If you are genuinely a delight to be around, you are 100% more likely to be rebooked. You are part of a team so pull your weight, diva’s are so 2010. I hope this letter has been of some use to you and that you can take something from it. As I said, not all of this will work for you, it’s just tricks I wish I’d known when I began modelling. But then again look at Kate Moss, she breaks all of the ‘rules’…and still looks amazing – that’s fashion.

Will Blade

I am a professional blogger interested in everything taking place in cyberspace. I am running this website and try my best to make it a better place to visit. I post only the articles that are related to the topic.

Comments

Theresa Lane

2 days ago

Thank you for your article, I think it can be very useful to newcomers of modeling industry.

Ronald Austin

2 days ago

Thank you!

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will Blade

Photographer