Angle Your Body
For full-body shots, don’t face the camera head-on. “It’s the least favorable stance, because you’ll see the widest parts of the body in the photo,” says portrait photographer Aaron Gil, the owner of FotoNuova, a photography studio in San Marino, California. Instead, assume the Oscars pose: Turn your body about 30 degrees to the right, then turn your head left in the direction of the camera, looking toward your left shoulder. (If your right side is better, reverse the direction.) To look your slimmest, put your weight on your back leg and turn your front foot toward the camera.
If you’re sitting, perch near the edge of the chair and sit up straight. Or, for a more casual pose, rest your elbows on your thighs and lean slightly forward. In a big group shot with people of different heights, avoid crouching, a position that flatters no one. If you can’t stand, try sitting on the floor with one knee up, crossing your legs yoga-style, or sweeping them to the side, like a mermaid’s tail.
Do something with your hands. If you’re standing, place the hand closest to the camera on your hip; this adds definition to your upper arm. If you’re sitting, clasp your hands in front of you (gently—no white knuckles) so your arms form a soft arc.
3, 2, 1, and… Right before the snap, “take a deep breath and release it,” says Gil. “This will bring a relaxed, ‘I’m loving this, really!’ look to your face.” Now go back to having fun.