As a professional photographer for over 12 years, many of my clients are in the 50+ age range that all have one thing in common: they all worry about wrinkles showing up on photos.
I run a series of workshops, and when I ask attendees to find a great spot for a photo shoot, they immediately gravitate towards a clean backdrop. This is actually an error that’s common for most people. The main objective of having a great photo taken is purely through sourcing the best natural light around.
How Light Changes Photos:
Natural light can shave up to 10 years off a face and the more even the light; it will remove blemishes, wrinkles and dark spots. The magic of light is incredible when the final photo results are shown to clients. More youthful, a mini-face lift and a stronger glow.
Without natural light, a bad photo can result in a slippery ego slope, which will make you feel less confident. Ultimately, you’ll start to miss out on capturing exciting life moments on camera, for fear that you don’t like how you look in the final photo.
Fluorescent strips, on the other hand will bring out every flaw, wrinkle, blemish and shadow to the highest level so always avoid artificial lighting.
The Do’s and Dont’s of Retouching:
Alongside using natural light to bring out your best features, I always advise clients to use the minimal of retouching. The more you retouch, the more distorted the final image so this is a good rule of thumb to remember: No one notices you when you look 10 percent better but when you retouch excessively, everyone will see this clearly.
If you’re taking photos with a smartphone, then make the most of the filters available but avoid overload. For example on iPhone, you can combine a subtle vintage filter and increase brightness by 10 percent, which will naturally show smoother skin and bring out your eye color. These filters don’t distort the image unlike PhotoShop and only takes seconds to apply. Try it!
How To Pose:
Here are a few final tips to ensure your profile or full body photo shows you in the best dazzling, natural light:
- Never face the camera square-on as your shoulders will appear bulky and wide.
- Use your nose as a magnet towards the lens. It’ll show confidence and symmetry.
- Use your limbs as a prop. For example: Rest your hand at the side of your neck as this will draw attention to your gorgeous face.
Enjoy having photos taken of you and make the most of the natural light as it’ll shave years off and boost your morale. Also remember that in 10 years, you’ll envy how you look today!
I’d like more specific tips. I need to have head-shot photo taken for my workplace. It doesn’t have to be professional. Any tips for selfies?
By the way, the choice of photo on this page is poor one, unless it’s an absolutely fantastic photo of a 50-something who looks 30, or … it really IS a 30-year-old!
POSTED OCTOBER 23, 2014
Grey hair can look amazing in photos. When capturing your portrait wear an assesory that brings out the colour of your eyes. A scarf or necklace would look amazing. Glad you like the tips and enjoy having your photo taken.
by KATE BRANCH
POSTED OCTOBER 23, 2014
Great question. When you face straight on to a light source, light will then illuminate the skin and blast wrinkles and blemishes from view. So keep the light flattering. However, in regards to light, nine times out of ten you will get a reflection if you wear glasses. Especially if you are facing a natural light source like a window. Your eyes get lost behind the glare. So find a well lit room and make sure the window glare is not showing up on your glasses.
POSTED OCTOBER 18, 2014
Any tips for those of us who wear glasses when having a photo taken?
by SUZANNE FLUHR
POSTED OCTOBER 17, 2014
Thank you for the great tips! My brother is a photographer and I learned a long time ago never to stand straight toward the camera but I didn’t know about placing the hand around the face, kind of like framing it. I love that tip. I would also love tips on gray hair photos. There is the temptation to go black and white with such a photo but a pop of color would totally be the bomb. Thanks again!
by S0NFLOWR, TX
Very interesting article! keep em’ coming.