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Tips & Tricks

Lighting and Posing Tips For Senior Photos | Matt Hernandez

By Hanssie on July 26th 2015

It’s hard to believe that summer is almost over and school is about to start back up again. This means school pictures are around the corner and those graduating this year are looking to invest in senior portraits. If you’re a senior portrait photographer or looking to become one, make sure you check our some of our articles on senior portraits here.

Senior portraits are much like regular portrait sessions when you consider lighting and posing. Posing for a female student would obviously be very different than posing a male student, so it is important that you are familiar and confident in your posing abilities.



In the two-part video series from Westcott, photographer Matt Hernandez takes us on an on-location senior portrait session. In the first video, he discusses achieving soft lighting while outdoors on a bright day. He uses a strobe and a large Rapid Box XXL with diffusion panels. He also gives tips on various posing techniques to keep in mind when photographing females. In the second video, Matt talks about using the strobe and Rapid box combination indoors, utilizing an ambient light induced lighting pattern inside a barn.

The videos are just little snippets, but full of some helpful tips that you can take with you if you’re just starting out for any type of portrait photography.

Lighting and Posing Techniques for On-Location Senior Portraits (Part 1)

Lighting and Posing Techniques for On-Location Senior Portraits (Part 2)

For more lighting tips, be sure to check out our Lighting 101 Workshop DVD to give you a foundation to master lighting. Lighting 201 will be released any day now, so be sure to join our Facebook Community Group to keep up-to-date on new releases.

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Hanssie is a Southern California-based writer and sometimes portrait and wedding photographer. In her free time, she homeschools, works out, rescues dogs and works in marketing for SLR Lounge. She also blogs about her adventures and about fitness when she’s not sick of writing so much. Check out her work and her blog at Follow her on Instagram

Q&A Discussions

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  1. oscar campos

    awesome tips!

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  2. Samuel Sandoval

    Awesome tips.

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  3. Trevor Dayley

    I wish in that first video they would have used the same pose and hair styling for the Ambient vs Rapid Box.

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  4. Trevor Dayley

    Looking forward to Lighting 201 when it launches!

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  5. Brandon Dewey

    good video!

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  6. Paul Empson

    Yep me too… though I know why they do: as referring to them as adult photo shoots… opens up a whole new can-o-worms ;-)

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  7. John Flora

    Great tips Matt!

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  8. Graham Curran

    I always get confused when Americans talk about “senior photos” – I always assume it’s the elderly (like me).

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