We all feel like idiots when we have to pose for a group photo.
So we asked model Zorana Mitic to show us how to turn our slouch to slay.
I was pretty surprised (and pretty pleased with myself) when Zorana said that my posing instinct was basically a good one. I think she even used the word "cute." That said, when I look at the side-by-side, the difference between her version of this pose and the way I was doing it originally is pretty substantial. She looks confident; I look like I want to cover myself up. I feel awkward posing for photos, and don't like how I look in most of them, so I think I often transmit that reluctance. Which obviously doesn't help me out. What I got from Zorana was sort of a "fake it til you make it" ethos. Next time I'm photographed I am going to think of how thoroughly comfortable she seemed to feel in front of the camera and try to adopt a little of that attitude for myself.
I'm TERRIBLE at posing, so Zorana was pretty much working off a mound of nervous play-doh with me. She told me to pose confidently, which has not been my forte in the past. But I think I'm getting the hang of it! Very very slowly! But I'm not quite there yet. Maybe later.
A quick glance through my tagged photos on Facebook, and you’ll see that my go-to pose is the hand-on-the-hip, thing. I could lie and say: “I don’t know why I do it!” But where is the journalistic integrity in that? I do it to accentuate my waist in an attempt to make myself look thinner. As far as my legs: I have no idea what I’m doing. I don’t know what to do with my legs in photos. Why is that one foot turned out? Am I getting ready to dance?
Zorana instructed me to lightly place my hand above my hip, instead of what I was doing before, which was aggressively clutching onto the flesh of my torso.
She also told me to cross my legs. In doing so, I'd give my body a more “hourglass-like” shape. She was right! And I think with a little more practice, I’ll be able to perfect the leg-cross without looking like I have to go to the bathroom.
I definitely feel awkward posing for photos. I'm so worried about what facial expression I'm supposed to make I don't even get around to making my body look relaxed and natural. Most photos of me end up looking like I was just caught trying to steal a cookie.
Zorana said she could tell I have a "cute personality" and that I should play it up while posing. It was good advice. I would like to look like someone with a personality. She told me I needed to relax my arm more when I thought it was already as relaxed as it could get. I think the concept of having fun with your pose as a way to become more relaxed is a good strategy. But this pose just kind of made me feel like I was trying to show off my armpit. Ultimately, my plan to quit my job and become a model is probably ill advised.
I also learned that you're not supposed to breathe when you pose, which was eye opening. Breathing is probably the thing I've been doing wrong my entire life.
I don't know how to take pictures. When I get in group photos, I gravitate toward goofy. Not just because that's my personality; it's also because I'd rather look purposefully dumb than try to look hot and fail.
I guess my butt is one of my least insecure insecurities, so I have a tendency to show it in photos. But as Zorana proved, there is a difference between showing it and showing it off. Her directions were simple: shoulders back and boobs out. Pop a hip and hold your waist. Then look at the camera like you want to murder it, but in a super sexy way.
Here are Zorana's overall tips to nail those hot poses:
1. People often just try to recreate poses, but you should work with the body you have. Show off your best assets.
2. If you breathe in just before a photo, you will look longer and stronger.
3. If you are uncomfortable about something, it's O.K. to block it! You could use a purse or scarf, or just change your pose entirely.
4. Always remember to pull your shoulders back and push your chest out.
5. If you want the strong model pout, slightly part your lips and stare at the camera with a fiery passion.
6. It's great to show your unique personality in photos (as long as that personality isn't awkward).
It must be noted that none of us will ever be as talented as Zorana when it comes to modeling.
During our photoshoot, she'd demonstrate poses flawlessly like she'd been doing them since the day she was born. (Can we also note that she is wearing heels in all of these photos?) At one point, we asked her to do a pose that involved kicking up her leg. She replied, "I don't think I've ever done that before, but I'll try." Then, she nailed the pose with the kind of ease that would make Tyra Banks weep. And while we didn't exactly nail our poses, we did walk away feeling a bit more sexy and confident thanks to Zorana.
In 2016, everyone carries around a camera in their pocket at all times.
Like it or not, that means photos can happen at any time. We hope that with these tips you'll be able to push aside the awkwardness of forcing a natural pose and let your own personality shine through.
Now go with your friends to a local carpet store, find the red, and WORK IT.