If your family is like most, then it no doubt includes that one person that can’t stand having their photo taken under any circumstances. Maybe it’s the shy child that literally runs and hides when Dad breaks out the camera. Maybe it’s the reluctant aunt that always volunteers to take the pictures so that she doesn’t have to be in any of them herself.
Whichever member of your own family is the culprit, it can be like pulling teeth to get them to take their proper turn in front of the lens. However, it’s incredibly important that they do. One day, your family photos are going to be all that’s left to remember special occasions by, so naturally you want everyone that you love to be included. Here are some tips for helping the reluctant photo subject in your life feel more at ease when it’s picture time.
The last thing that is going to help a shy person feel more at ease in front of the camera is criticism or scolding. This will only serve to make them dread the experience even more. Avoid making fun of the person for being shy or acting exasperated. Instead, be encouraging. Pay them compliments and soothe insecurities. Stress how much you love them and want them to be included in the visual memories you’re making.
In many cases, it also helps to talk to the person and actually ask what they don’t like about having their picture taken. Really listen to what they list as their reasons and ask what you can do to make the experience easier on them. Sometimes camera shyness is about something simple that is easily rectified.
Make photo time fun.
Professional photographers are able to get such wonderful results with their subjects because they know how to make a photo shoot into a relaxing, fun experience for everyone involved. Instead of going for the same stiff, posed photos that no one really enjoys being a part of, try shooting some semi-candid shots instead.
Orchestrate situations that naturally bring out the best in everyone, including the reluctant subject in your life, and start clicking away. Get everyone laughing, interacting, and having fun as a group. Real smiles are always much better and more attractive than stiff, fake ones anyway.
Learn the ins and outs of taking flattering photos.
Many people that hate having their picture taken feel the way they do because so many photos are completely unflattering. When the camera comes out, they’re automatically worried about being immortalized at their worst. That said, it’s important to know how to shoot people in a way that highlights the best of how they look. For instance, always avoid photographing from low angles. This isn’t flattering for anyone, even those with perfect figures and flawless features. Make sure that lighting is adequate and flattering as well.
Getting the most out of shy or reluctant photo subjects often boils down to understanding, patience, and connection. A little really does go a long way here!
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