We all want to capture that perfect shot, whether it’s an outfit, a popular tourist location or quirky cafés. It’s easy to get side-tracked especially when shooting photos in public. Insecurities rise whilst confidence lacks but ignore the stares, remarks and chatter. Don’t let anyone hinder your progress – their opinions and stares are irrelevant.
It’s natural to feel embarrassed or self-conscious posing in front of a camera. You may have concerns revolving around the public, your body and even your outfit choices. I use to have similar concerns at the beginning. After a while, I was in my element with only one worry, to capture every shot I envisioned. There was a shift in confidence and I began prioritising myself and genuinely enjoying each shoot. Changing on the street without worry (as each outfit was meticulously planned), attempting new poses and styling choices. I wanted to share my personal tips on how to feel confident when shooting photos in public.
Think about the purpose of the image you want to capture. An outfit solely for your Instagram, a mini photoshoot for an upcoming blog post or a beautiful memory. Keep the purpose in mind and jot down a few ideas. Potential locations, photographers, styling techniques and perhaps even a theme, if you’re taking an editorial approach.
Begin by taking baby steps. Ask a friend or family member to be your photographer. Helping build up your confidence in front of the camera. The best way is with someone you feel comfortable around and can perhaps even guide you. I often get my mother involved when my go-to photographers aren’t available. We may argue and banter, but we always get the shot. Either way, I know she has my best interest at heart regardless of my temperamental ways.
Next, decide on a location. Ideally, your back garden, outside your home or a local area as they’re less populated. Allowing you time to get comfortable shooting outside, with the general public. My first location was the road I lived on, a quiet space with no worries of people staring. In one instance, a neighbour complimented and even encouraged me as she walked past. That gave me a confidence boost, exactly what I needed. Yes girl, keep doing your thing!
Lights, Camera, Pose
Everyone has their own style. We all go through the phase of experimenting until we discover our signature pose, that go-to move. It can involve looking into the distance, playing with our hair or a paparazzi-inspired motion shot. I tend to balance my shots, varying between looking away with mystique and gazing straight into the lens. It’s about what feels natural to you. Social media can also help with potential poses. Use it for inspiration than imitation, as people will notice.
In my own experiences, I have regular dilemmas of what to do with my hands. Accessorising is the solution. Holding a handbag, umbrella, book, coffee cup – most items would work as a prop. Having pre-planned poses and prop ideas makes the process smoother and quicker. Just in case you have to move in a hurry. We all have that one go-to pose. Mine involves having one hand in my hair, dimple on full display and channelling emotion.
Niche It Out
After a few trial runs, you’ll build up your confidence and hone in on a signature pose. Next involves figuring out what type of content you want to produce consistently.
- Editorial glamour around London (Fashion)
- Dynamic motion shots (Lifestyle)
- Family orientated portraits (Parent)
- A whimsical world of pink (Disney)
Figure out what photography styles spark your interest. Gain inspiration from magazines, Pinterest and Instagram. You’re essentially a brand, what message would you want to communicate? The socialite wearing luxury brands, an artist in quirky locations, or a moody poet displaying raw emotion. There are many perspectives to take, but what path appeals to you – what’s your story?