A trick for getting a smile...

Discussion in 'People' started by Uncle Frank, Sep 12, 2005.

  1. Sometimes I get so wrapped up in the technical aspects of portraiture that I neglect the the most important part of the process... coaxing a flattering expression from the subjects. Capturing a natural smile can be quite a challenge, particularly when you're pointing a bazooka size lens at your model from 6 feet away. Having them say "cheese" just doesn't do it for me. And with two subjects, your odds of getting a keeper go down by a factor of 4.

    My neighbors, Harry and Monica, were all dolled up for a dinner date, and I volunteered to take their portrait. My first four attempts ended up like this... awkward expressions of ill ease and forced smiles.


    Then I remembered a tip from an old portrait specialist (Jarrell?). I told them to forget about the picture and look directly into each other's eyes, and not to turn back to the camera until I gave them a signal. I let them gaze at each other for 10 seconds, until they almost giggled, and then yelled now!

    View attachment 15358

    Note: If you do this more than once in a session, you'll lose the advantage of surprise, so take a few test shots first, and dial in your settings.
  2. MontyDog


    Jan 30, 2005
    #1064 - You have an error in your SQL syntax;
  3. Terri French

    Terri French

    May 5, 2005
    great tip

    Thanks so much for the great tip and example. I'll have to give it a try
  4. You're most welcome, Terri. It's just a little trick for awkward moments during formal shots, but hopefully it will come in handy.
  5. strobel


    Apr 30, 2005
    Algonquin, IL
    As I am sitting here thinking about that, I must say that is a great idea. I will have to try that.

  6. I like this tip Frank and will put it in my bag of tricks for future reference.
  7. papa85

    papa85 Guest

    I like it. Think it will work .
  8. Hi Frank! Having them say "pizza" almost always works for me.

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