How to Cultivate Natural Photos

If you want to get the biggest bang for your buck, listen up!  As easy-breezy natural photos seems, it can be the most challenging thing to accomplish as a photographer. The best and baddest photographers show us how much beauty is found when someone can relax. My common reality was standing in front of people  (who I do not know) with a camera saying, “Maybe try this…” 

This is the pain I felt of being AWKWARD.  Once I understood the power I have as a photographer to create natural looks and smiles, I stopped feeling awkward behind the camera. When I began to create space for people to feel comfortable, my photos became more care free. Remember it is a SKILL that you learn and I am still learning, too. Natural posing is more about direction. This takes practice to get comfortable in front of strangers so they can become comfortable in front of you.

Here are 3 helpful tips to provide natural photos.


Give them space to be themselves.


I believe the best thing you can do is BE YOURSELF. I am no extrovert. Remember the old video going around facebook of a photographer running, jumping, and flipping to make the couple laugh. Well, I would never do something like that. I am an introvert and proud if it. I tell my best lame jokes and I show my nerdy side. Once I tried to save a bee after a photo shoot and I took one couple to my favorite fast food restaurant in town. Simple things show who I am give people space to be who they are too. If you are working with a couple, do not go for the close up photos immediately. First stay back and get your wide shots before you move in for imidate shots.


Play Music


This task is simple yet profound. Pictures with no music is like a movie with no sound. BOO! I ask what music they enjoy and turn on a playlist. This has transformed my photoshoot time because they can relax when the environment is more playful. I`ll get more out of photos with music than without music. If the person or couple is willing I always ask them to dance. Surely someone will end up laughing and I walk away with great photos.


I am someone who L-O-V-E-S a plan. Preparation comes completely natural for me. The best way for me to take amazing photos is to be inspired. This can be as simple as looks to Pinterest or playing my favorite playlist. I believe its important to encourage myself as an artist as well. I get to create as Charis, not as anyone else. The best work I have produced as been from my freedom to be myself. Art is not a competition. Art is a journey of discovering who you are. The best way you can prepare sometimes is by encouraging yourself that you are creative and innovative. 


Over all, I need to come to a photoshoot FULL of creativity and ideas for direction. 

Direction can be as simple as

- trace each other’s faces with your finger tips

- play with their hair

- push/pull on each other

- kiss up and down the side of her face

- interlock fingers and sway toward and away from each other


Prepare your camera for photos by clearing the memory data or reformatting your memory cards. Prepare your mind to give direction and to stay engaged. Prepare your heart to open up to new creative ideas and be willing to try new ideas. Remember, you are someone`s dream photographer so OWN IT!