35 Photography Tips For Red Carpet Worthy PicturesBy Larissa C
Let’s be honest: who doesn’t want to take amazing pictures to post on Instagram? There’s absolutely nothing wrong with wanting to upload nice photos and make your feed look like that of a professional model. And the best part is that it doesn’t take much to accomplish that. You don’t have to wear expensive outfits or try extravagant makeup tips to take the perfect photos. All you need is knowledge — the knowledge of how to capture yourself from the best angles and lighting. Doesn’t sound that difficult, does it? Well, that’s because it’s not hard to find tips online, and you should thank people like Instagrammer Bonnie Rodríguez Krzywicki for that. Bonnie is the proud author of Pose, Click, Share!, a book where she shares her secrets on how to look effortlessly amazing in front of the camera. In this article, we’ll share with you some of Bonnie’s best tips. Here are 35 photography tips that will make you look even better on your Instagram posts!
All images in this article are courtesy of Bonnie Rodríguez Krzywicki on Instagram
#1: Chin up!
Bonnie Rodríguez has over 800,000 followers on Instagram, and there’s one thing she noticed about how her followers take pictures. Instead of showing off their confidence, the ladies that follow Bonnie tend to give off a shy vibe, and she has a tip for that.
Instead of looking to the floor or lowering your eyes, one of the best ways to look confident in your Instagram posts is to lift your chin. It’s just one step, but it’s more than enough to make you pose like a confident and self-assured model.
#2: Adding angles to the picture.
Most people tend to pose for pictures in a very basic manner. Their arms are usually in the same position, and if you put these people in a box, they’d fit perfectly with the way they’re posing with a straight posture.
Bonnie says that one of the best things you can do to add more life to your pictures is to add angles to your pose. Change where your arms and legs are positioned; maybe turn a little bit to the side. That’s all it takes to make your pictures look better.
#3: A thumb on the belt loop never fails.
Do you tend to get shy in front of the camera? There’s no need to feel bad if that’s the case. Most people feel insecure when taking pictures, but you can easily change that with just one simple thing. Check out Bonnie’s side-by-side pictures:
Hooking your thumb on the belt loop of your pants is the perfect way to add more energy to your pictures. As you can see in the picture, Bonnie manages to radiate shy yet lively energy in the image on the right, and that’s exactly what you want to go for.
#4: Don’t slouch!
If you want to look confident in your photos, changing this simple thing about yourself will help a great deal. The easiest way to look like a confident woman is to maintain good posture. And yes, it really is that simple. Check out Bonnie’s example:
In the first picture, she is slouching, and that kind of posture doesn’t help the way she looks at all. As you can see, she simply changes her posture and the position of her hands, and Bonnie already looks like a different person in the second picture.
#5: Make the most of the lighting.
The way that you pose for pictures will certainly determine how good you look in those photos. However, the pose you make is not the only factor that will affect the final results of your homemade photoshoot. Lighting is also key.
The very first thing that Bonnie suggests is that you add angles to your pictures. Move your arms around and maybe take a short step. Then, just figure out what’s the best way to capture the room’s lighting. Perhaps ask someone to use their phone’s flashlight to help!
#6: Keep the outfit in mind.
In addition to the angle of your photo and the lighting, Bonnie has another tip to add more spiciness to your Instagram photos. Always dedicate some time to plan your outfit prior to taking the pictures. Check out these back-to-back photoshoots:
In the first picture, Bonnie is recreating a pose that is all too common. Now that you’re following these amazing tips, you need to be bold and try different poses, like in the second picture. And always remember to coordinate your outfit so it matches the theme of the photo!
#7: Crouching is always a yay!
Before you take your next picture, you have to decide the kind of energy you want to give off. Do you want people to see you as a cute woman, or do you want them to see you as someone fierce? There’s no right or wrong answer here — you can choose anything!
In this particular case, Bonnie is giving a posing tip for those who want to show off their fierce side. Crouching on the floor and setting the camera at a lower angle always does the trick when it comes to taking pictures that will make you look confident.
#8: Hands to the side.
For most of us, it is kind of hard to decide what to do with our hands when posing for pictures. If you’re anything like us, you usually go for that basic pose where you rest your hands against the front of your body and hold them together, like Bonnie is doing in the first picture:
When you pose like that, you basically hide your beautiful figure from the world, and none of your curves will be seen. Now, if you put your hands on your waist and flash the camera with a big smile, the difference is like night and day!
#9: Pose like an influencer.
If you want to give off confident energy, don’t hold back on your poses for pictures. Do you know those influencers that you follow on Instagram? They have no fear of embracing their fierce side for photos, and it’s not that hard to follow their lead.
Being bold in front of the camera may not come naturally to you, nor will it happen overnight. Bonnie’s tip is that you practice different poses and compare the pictures to see what you can do to improve the quality of your photos. Sometimes, the simplest things (like changing the angle of the camera) make the biggest difference.
#10: Shake off the fear and strike a pose.
When we go out in public, we want to take pictures in front of beautiful landscapes or other gorgeous places. However, if there are people around, we may feel shy and end up holding back on our poses so as to not “embarrass” ourselves.
For Bonnie, there is no such thing as being embarrassed about taking pictures in public. Don’t be scared to strike a pose and make different faces for your Instagram photos. Also, taking photos in cars is not a cliché anymore — even Kim Kardashian is doing it now!
#11: Put different tips into action.
There are many factors to consider when you’re posing for pictures. You don’t have to follow all of the tips simultaneously, but incorporating just a few of them at a time is enough to change the final results of your photos.
In this picture, Bonnie mixed a few of her tips to improve her image. For this photo, she made sure to find the best lighting and angle, as well as to pick an outfit that matches the weather and the season. Then, she made a simple pose, and voilà — she looks like a professional model here.
#12: Know how to add movement.
If there is one thing that makes people’s pictures look underwhelming, that thing has got to be the lack of movement. Instead of posing like a marble statue, you have to try and add movement to your next photos. Check it out:
A pro tip from Bonnie: record videos instead of taking pictures. When you record a video of yourself making a pose, you can screenshot the video and capture the best moments. For instance, try moving your bag or taking a step forward in the video. The final result will look as amazing as the picture on the right.
#13: Lower angles are the key to success.
Even if you’re not a professional photographer, you probably already know that angle is everything in photography. Moving the camera a little bit can change the way you look in photos, and this simple tip will help you look like a model.
Instead of looking up at the camera, you want to look down on it. Ask your photographer to crouch and capture you from a lower angle. Also, stretching your arms over your head will help elongate your figure and make you lose a couple of pounds for the pic.
#14: Dress up, even if you’re at home.
Even if you’re not traveling or participating in an event, you can still take pictures. In case you want to keep your Instagram feed updated, but you’re spending a lot of time at home, this tip is ideal for you.
Choose a location in your house that you think will make for a nice background. Then, choose an outfit that complements your body type. Keep in mind that it’s important to match the color of the outfit with the background. Once you do that, just set a camera timer on your phone!
#15: Keep your arms away from your mid-section.
As we said before, lots of people tend to subconsciously hide their figures when taking pictures. Perhaps it’s just being unsure where to place your hands and arms. In this case, Bonnie’s valuable tip is that you keep your arms away from your mid-section.
In the first picture, we can barely see Bonnie’s fabulous outfit or her beautiful body. That’s because she’s hiding everything behind her arms. The second she opens her arms and keeps them away from her mid-section, we can see everything — and the photo looks completely different.
#16: Posing with your SO doesn’t take a lot.
If you have a significant other, you probably want to post pictures with them. It’s not that you want to make people feel bad for being single; you just want to share your happiness, right? In case you don’t know how to pose for pictures with your man (or woman), here’s a tip:
There are many ways to pose with someone else, but the best pictures are arguably the ones that make both of you look powerful. Hold each other close and turn slightly away from the camera. Make a confident face — and don’t forget to show off that ring on your finger!
#17: Copying influencer’s poses.
If you love Instagram, you probably love following a bunch of celebrities and influencers. Seeing their photos makes us want to create photos that are just as nice, and the good news is that it’s not that hard to do that.
In this picture, Bonnie is recreating a pose that was made popular by Khloé Kardashian. All you have to do is sit on your bed, spread your legs and support your arm against your thigh, making a sort of triangle. Then, touch your face gently and stare straight into the camera.
#18: Hiding that double chin.
Bonnie usually posts tips to help chubby women show off their best outfits and poses in pictures. This next tip of hers is meant for women who want to take selfies but don’t quite know what to do about their double chin.
There are many ways to hide a double chin when taking a selfie. First, you can wrap a nice scarf around your neck. In addition to picking a neck accessory, you can also lift your chin slightly and push the camera further away from your face.
#19: Choosing the perfect winter outfit.
Winter is a challenge for most people, but it’s especially challenging for chubby women. We all know how some winter coats can fluff up our outline a bit. If you want to avoid that, Bonnie’s tip is that you choose the perfect outfits.
Some winter jackets are made specifically to help show off a woman’s curves, and those are the jackets you want to purchase. The blue jacket that Bonnie is wearing hides her curves, but the black one allows her to tighten it around her waist, thus defining her beautiful curves.
#20: Show people your side profile.
If you don’t want to settle for the classic “staring at the camera” pose, you’re going to like this next tip. When you stand with your body turned towards the camera, your photos may come out unflattering to your figure.
Now, if you turn to the side, you automatically make your figure look thinner, especially if you’re standing in front of a multi-colored wall like Bonnie is. Hold your breath for a few seconds, and maybe push back your butt just a little bit. These three simple steps will completely change the results of your photoshoot!
#21: Looking less cheesy in pictures.
Look, there is absolutely nothing wrong with being cheesy. And we really mean that. You can take pictures in any way you want, and if you want to make cheesy poses, that’s fine. But if you want to try something different, here’s a tip for you:
Summer is just around the corner, and you’re probably thinking of all the pictures you’re going to take in your bathing suit. If you want to look sexy, Bonnie has a tip for you. Turn slightly away from the camera, put your hand on your waist, and arch your back a little.
#22: Don’t be afraid to look at the camera.
For lots of women, taking pictures is a challenge. Some of us don’t feel comfortable in front of a camera, and we feel downright insecure. For Bonnie, the very first thing you have to do prior to taking pictures is to love yourself!
Be confident, and don’t be afraid to look at the camera. You can rock any look, even the schoolgirl look. Turn away from the camera, add movement to your legs, and stare right into the lens. You’ll see just how beautiful you are!
#23: Make the most of the background.
If you’re traveling anywhere, you know that you will visit beautiful places. And these places are ideal for taking the perfect pictures for your Instagram. If you come across some open scenery and you want to take pictures there, here’s a tip.
Show off the strong woman that you are by posing like a supermodel. Bonnie’s tip is to face away from the camera, bend your leg and maybe raise your dress slightly to show some skin. It’s so simple to make yourself look like a confident top model.
#24: Smiling is okay!
At this point, you’ve probably noticed how Bonnie is usually making serious faces when posing for pictures. That’s because her goal is to teach you how to show off your confident side. But don’t worry — there’s nothing wrong with smiling.
In fact, don’t be afraid to show off your pearly whites! While it’s really empowering to take sexy and confident photos, it’s also really nice to take goofy or cheesy photos. According to Bonnie, the photo on the right is ideal for a professional shot (for your website or resume, maybe).
#25: Share these tips with your friends!
All of Bonnie’s tips are helpful, and once you finish reading this article, you’re probably going to start taking the most incredible pictures ever. And do you know what’s better than learning how to pose for pictures? It’s sharing those tips with friends!
You can help your friends take amazing pictures, too. Invite them over for a photoshoot and share what you’ve learned. Instead of settling for the classic “side by side” pic with your bestie, add more life to the picture. Sit on the floor, smile for the camera, and take the best photos together!
#26: The sun is a great source of light, but not always.
We’re talking so much about lighting that you’re probably thinking of going out to the backyard just to take a few pictures in the sun. While natural lighting is a magical thing, the sun is not always your friend for photographs.
See how Bonnie is squinting her eyes in the first picture? While the lighting in that photo is something out of this world, squinting your eyes for pictures is not that helpful. Once Bonnie moved her chair to a shady area, she may have lost the perfect lighting, but the picture looks much better.
#27: A morning pic? No problem.
There is absolutely no shame in taking pictures at home. If you want to take pictures in your bedroom, go ahead. Just don’t forget to clean the mirror and organize the bedside table, okay? All jokes aside, Bonnie has the perfect tip for your next bedroom photo:
Celebrities are always posting pictures of themselves first thing in the morning, so why shouldn’t you? Sit on the edge of the bed, cross your legs, grab that mug of coffee, and throw your hair to the side. Those are four simple steps that will change your next pictures!
#28: Add different angles to your pictures.
While photographs are static, you can still add movement to them. Well, you can add the idea of movement, at least. If you want to make your pictures more dynamic, all it takes is a little bit of stretching, as you can see in the photo below:
In the first picture, we cannot see how beautiful Bonnie’s body is. Once she stretches her leg and opens her arms, her entire stance changes, and so does the result of her picture. She even added arrows to the image so you can see exactly what you have to do to copy this pose.
#29: It’s okay to edit your photos.
Nowadays, most people who have social media accounts live an awful dilemma. Should we try to look as natural as possible in our pictures or should we add a filter or two to the photos? The answer is simple: you can do whatever!
As long as you don’t look like a completely different person, what’s the harm in using a filter on your photos? In this example, there’s an unedited photo (on the left) and a photo in which she edited the brightness and contrast. She still looks like herself, and the end result is perfect.
#30: How to use the sunlight in your favor.
Three pictures ago, we told you that the sun won’t always help your pictures look better. However, you were probably left wondering how you could possibly use the sunlight in your favor. Don’t worry — we won’t leave you hanging!
Remember that we mentioned that squinting your eyes in pictures isn’t flattering? Well, moving out of the sun isn’t the only option. Just close your eyes and try to look as relaxed as possible. This way, you’ll look like you’re basking in the sunlight, not struggling against it!
#31: Looking pretty in the simplest ways.
Sometimes, when we see pictures of our favorite influencers, we probably can’t help but wish to copy their style. They always look amazing in photos, and it’s not wrong of us to want to look as pretty as they do.
The good news is that it doesn’t take a lot to copy an Instagram model’s posing style for pictures. There are simple poses that will make you look chic, as you can see in the picture above. Bonnie literally just sat on a chair — straighten your back, add movement to your feet, and make a confident face.
#32: A tip for the summer.
We’re just a couple of months away from summer, and you’re probably dreading the moment you’ll have to take pictures with family and friends during your vacation. If that’s the case, you don’t have to worry anymore — Bonnie has the perfect tip for you.
To look great in pictures, let your confident side come out! It may be challenging, but you’ll be happier with the results. Instead of hiding your body like Bonnie is doing in the first picture, turn away from the camera, keep your back straight, take a deep breath, and you’ll be looking like a bikini model!
#33: This is how you pose with your back to the camera.
Looking back at the camera is probably one of the biggest clichés ever. We bet that you know someone who’s always posting pics like this — or maybe you’re that person. Hey, there’s nothing wrong with doing the same thing as everyone else, but did you know you can improve that pose?
Instead of doing it like all the other girls, follow Bonnie’s helpful tips and take the best cliché photos you can. Rather than simply throwing a look at the camera over your shoulder, bend your leg a little and raise your shoulder slightly. It’s not hard to do that, and the results are amazing.
#34: Never face the camera like this.
At this point, you’ve seen so many photography tips that you’re almost an expert. Almost. There are still some things we want to show you, and some precious tips that you deserve to know. First, never face the camera like this:
Maybe the picture on the left would be ideal for a mugshot — but not for your Instagram feed. If you’re dressed up and you want to show off your cute outfit, strike a confident pose like Bonnie is doing in the second picture.
#35: Don’t hide behind your jacket.
If you have been looking for useful photography tips, then you must have come across a tip mentioning that you should avoid wearing jackets for your pictures. If you don’t know how to pose in a jacket, it is going to hide your curves.
You can still wear your favorite jacket for a picture, just make sure to keep it open so it won’t hide your outfit or your body. See how Bonnie’s curvy figure is on display even though she’s crouching and wearing that fabulous jacket? Just follow Bonnie and her tips for the perfect picture!