If you were looking for something sexy, you came to the right place. Don’t worry, this article is totally SFW (safe for workplace), but I am not promising it won’t tease you.

Learning the subtle variations in hand gestures, looks, and body placement will diversify your portfolio and give you a better understanding of the nuances of posing. In general, one of the biggest mistakes photographers make is moving from scene to scene too quickly, without making adjustments to the posing of their subjects. The five different posing ideas presented here will help you pay attention to small details that make a huge difference.


Conceal, Don’t Feel

The most important thing we as photographers can take from Disney’s Frozen was the lesson, “Conceal, don’t feel.” After all, Elsa knows best.

Odds are, if a hand’s placement doesn’t look natural, it will draw attention to the fact that the subject is concealing something (refer to the image above). Place the subjects’ arms in a way to make it seem as though it wasn’t their intention to conceal. By doing so, you leave more to the viewer’s imagination and create thought-provoking imagery.


Watch How the Hands Are Placed

Since we are on the subject of hand placement, pay close attention to how your subject places their fingers on their body. You want to avoid stiff and tense “Barbie Hands”  and you can do this by requesting that your subject shake out the tension in their fingers and softly place their hands on their body.

It’s also good to note that bending at the wrist releases tension and eases the fingers to lay naturally. Once this has been addressed, place the hands where they would naturally be if the subject was to conceal their private parts and avoid mirroring arm placements at all costs.


Relax The Lips

Closing and pressing the lips together can have the effect of creating tension in the jaw line, and typically this isn’t what we’re going for. Instead, try having your subject open their lips, ever so subtly, to release tension and go for a softer look. Making this slight adjustment completely transforms the feel of a portrait, and the look of the subject.

[REWIND: Boudoir Photography Tip | Breaking the Ice]


Direct Where the Eyes Go

If your subject desires a sexy, confident overall feel to the images, direct them to have their chin up and eyes looking down at the camera. This showcases a more domineering and powerful gaze. If it’s an innocent and ‘longing’ look that’s sought, direct their chin down and have them look up towards the camera.


It’s good to note there that direct eye contact with the camera is the perfect posing idea for shots where you are peeking in on a scene (behind a door, through a curtain, etc), however for a voyeuristic image, have the subject look away from the camera.


Crop To Tell A Story

Be aware of what you choose to show and where you choose to crop.  Cropping tells a story of its own, so combining that with the power of posing leads to a world of difference in the overall quality of your shoot.

Choosing the right lens for the appropriate pose allows you to have a wide versatility of shots in just one scene. You can also use micro adjusting  of limbs, fingers, and head movements while using a tighter portrait lens and then doing the same with a wider lens, gives you the ability to capture more of the scene for more options.

Have more posing tips for boudoir portraits? Let us know in the comments below! Check out more from our Fine Art Boudoir Earthen Bathup Workshop and learn more on how to post-produce, pose, and light for boudoir photography. Gain access to this workshop and so much more by purchasing a Premium Subscription to SLR Lounge!

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