During my Senior picture shoots, I constantly get asked, “What should I do with my hands?”. This is a very understandable question since posing hands can make or break an image. If you think about them too much, they’ll tend to look stiff. Hands should appear graceful, soft and elegant so they’re not a distraction. Here are some tips for posing hands in your Senior pictures.
To make your hands look graceful, think of them as if they were the hands of a ballet dancer. They should be light, fingers should be fanned, and all tension should be removed. You can do some of this by showing me the side of your hand vs the back of it and opening up the fingers instead of in a clutched fist. This is certainly harder than it sounds so I’ve put a few tips together on what you can do with your hands in a photoshoot. Practice these tips in the mirror so you can see how they look.
1. Give your hands something to do.
If your hands are busy doing something, they’ll have a natural look. You can keep them busy by playing with your wardrobe: fiddle with your jewelry, tug on your top, twirl a shoe string. If you have a “fidget” with your hands, that can show your personality: picking at your nails, playing with your ear, twirling hair.
2. Hide your hands.
Put your hands in your pockets, under other body parts, or in your hair. Just keep in mind that we still want to see a part of your hand if it’s a finger, thumb or side of the hand. If we don’t see part of the hand, the image can look like you have no hands at all.
3. Use hands to shape or enhance your features.
Placing your hands in certain positions can add shape to your body. Putting your hands on your hips will create negative (which is good!) space around your waste making you appear slimmer. You can also emphasize your favorite different parts by placing your hands near them: love your cheek bones or lips, softly touch your face or lips; have great stems (legs), run your hands up and down them; proud of that rump, give a look over the shoulder with your hands on your upper thigh or in your back pocket. Just remember to lightly touch with your hands so they don’t put pressure and distort the face or body.
4. Say no to symmetry.
Have your right and left hand doing two separate things will create a dynamic look. Too much symmetry is boring. Change up the height, position, etc. between the two hands and you will find your image more intriguing.
I do a lot of work with my Seniors to help them throughout their session. Directing and making sure my clients are comfortable is a major part of why people come to me for their Senior pictures.
If you’re interested in having me shoot your senior pictures, contact me. We can set up a time to chat to make sure I’m the right Senior photographer for you.