The Greatest Sitting Poses for the New Portrait Photographer

A lot of the ideas on-line must do with having a standing topic. However typically, that doesn’t mesh Slot with the vibe of the shoot. So what about sitting poses? And the way are they totally different for many who establish as males vs. girls? Effectively, they transcend that. There are additionally issues for physique varieties too. So that will help you out, we’re going to run via varied sitting poses. For reference, we’re going to quote varied articles we’ve written through the years and a few ideas from professionals.


The very first thing to learn about sitting poses is how issues work. The physique turns into naturally shorter and wider. Most photographers and topics let you know this isn’t what they wish to do. Because of this, you’ll often want an extended lens and extra working house. However there are additionally fashionable issues you are able to do like change the angle from eye degree to under the topic. In fact, it’s a must to mix this with the suitable lighting.

When you’re searching for standing poses, we’ve received numerous posing choices for each women and men. However for this tutorial, we’re specializing in sitting poses.

Important Suggestions for Sitting Poses

Let’s make this straightforward. Listed below are varied newbie ideas for portrait photographers seeking to work in a studio with topics doing sitting poses.

  • Communication is essential. Have a inventive imaginative and prescient at first. When you’ve received that, use visible cues and storyboards for example to the topic what you wish to do. Additionally, use verbal instructions and thoughts your manners.
  • When contemplating sitting poses, know that among the greatest elements listed here are the kind of seat you’re working with, the particular person’s construct, and the wardrobe.For instance, you sit utterly in another way on a dinner desk seat than you’ll on a bar stool. An workplace chair and a lounge bean bag name for utterly other ways to sit down. These have an effect on us in numerous methods.
  • Don’t ever have somebody sitting on a chair all the best way again of their seat. Have them sit on the primary quarter of it, nearer to the digicam. This places much less emphasis on the core, torso, and hip space. Subsequently, it received’t make them look as pronounced in that area. Finally, it’s an excellent beginning tip that results in flattering photographs. Right here’s a quote from a information we did on this beforehand.

If a topic sits all the best way again in a seat till the backs of their knees contact the sting, the entire weight is distributed on the rear and their thighs. What this finally ends up creating is outlines and arches that make your topic look wider than they really are. So to make them look extra flattering, ask your topic to convey themselves to the close to fringe of the seat.

Most items of clothes look higher once they’re a bit extra form-fitting. This tip covers the complete spectrum of genders and identities, however after all there are exceptions. When you’re photographing a topic sitting they usually’re carrying a button-down shirt, have them first get up. Then work with them to drag the bottom of the shirt in and tuck it into their pants. This will make the apparel look extra kind becoming.

If you must, use a hair tie or a security pin. Generally black gaffer tape also can work. Belief me, gaffer tape is a photographer’s finest buddy. When doing sitting poses, it may well work for place markers, flagging lights, adjusting clothes, and so forth.

Everybody has a better shoulder. This occurs naturally due to how we stock luggage round, how we sleep, and the way we adapt to our regular lives. Consider it or not, if you happen to checked out an individual’s skeleton, each side would look utterly totally different.

With all this in thoughts, ask your topic to first sit instantly in entrance of you. Observe their shoulders and notice which one is greater. Have them convey the upper shoulder again a bit in order that they appear even. Then they’ll look even on-camera.

Once you mix this with off-camera lighting, equivalent to from an umbrella, the physique will look extra even. Additional, mix this with the tip about clothes for sitting poses and you need to be simply positive.

When sitting, everybody usually wonders what to do with their palms. In some conditions, I’ll ask a topic a number of questions that get them actually enthusiastic about issues. Then their pure physique language will come via along with the poses. However the physique language of palms can actually come via in numerous methods. Right here’s a quote from a beforehand written information.

Discover the place they naturally place their arms. Do they lean towards the armrest on one aspect and place the opposite hand of their lap? Is one arm draped together with the backrest, or are each of their palms of their pockets? Listening to these particulars will usually reveal the start line of your first pose. It often requires minor softening of the palms within the lap or inserting them together with the again/armrests. If the palms aren’t cooperating, have them curl the fingers in and make a mild fist.

  • So what do you do concerning the face? Effectively, in relation to sitting poses, there’s simply as a lot versatility right here as there may be with standing poses. Beneath is an infographic we did that may assist.

Placing all this collectively will get difficult when it additionally involves lighting. So let’s preserve lighting easy. Our workers prefers to work with off-camera lighting like strobes in a giant umbrella. Place the middle of the sunshine modifier in order that it’s barely above the eye-level of the topic. Then have it face down in the direction of them.

This will get harder once you’re doing standing poses. However for sitting poses, you’ve received extra leeway.

5 of the Easiest and Greatest Sitting Poses for Flattering Photographs of individuals

Preserving in thoughts that not all poses are the identical, listed here are a number of tips about a few of our favourite poses and why they work properly throughout the board.


This pose takes the topic and places them barely off angle from the digicam. In fact, it begins with them sitting on a chair. When you’re instantly going through the topic, they’re positioning their coronary heart ahead at a 30 to 45 diploma angle away from you. The pose can simply create a relaxed neck and preserve the palms downward. The top has some play room and might face instantly towards you. Bear in mind to have them push their chin out a bit for additional emphasis!

One of these sitting pose is nice for basic portraits. It’s foolproof so long as they’re sitting on the sting of the seat and the posture is correct. On this case, I don’t prefer to say there may be good posture or unhealthy posture.

Discover how we’re not saying the particular person must be sitting straight. The rationale why is that sitting up straight isn’t all the time snug. Simply assume, we sit at computer systems lots, and so in relation to sitting poses, experiment with them leaning in and away from the digicam.

Do not forget that tip concerning the shoulders? Effectively, this works it doesn’t matter what aspect you’re on. Sometimes, I prefer to have my topic going through the principle mild throughout the body. Within the photograph above, the solar was setting within the west. So Micah’s heart-center was going through that course too. In the event that they determined to do legs crossed, it nonetheless would’ve labored simply positive.

One of many greatest benefits of a pose like that is that it offers the palms some factor to do; however that additionally is dependent upon what sort of seat the particular person is in. It doesn’t matter what although, the palms will usually be at relaxation. Nevertheless, ready like this, the palms may be doing practically something in addition to fiddling round within the pockets.

When you’re doing this pose with one particular person, then simply comply with the instructions above. However if you happen to’re capturing two folks, then attempt to place them in order that their faces are on the identical focusing airplane. In any other case, you’ll get some of us in focus and others not sharply in focus.

Stopping down the aperture will simply imply that you simply’re capturing at a slower shutter pace; and the very last thing you want is motion blur.

Ahead Angle, Leaned Again

This pose differs from the one above as a result of the topic’s heart-center is going through the digicam. They begin by sitting on a chair. And as an alternative, their decrease half is going through away from you. When speaking about sitting poses, this one would possibly truly be tremendous snug and even let somebody crack their again. And who doesn’t need that? For variation, you could possibly even have them go from one aspect to the opposite. Let the palms additionally relaxation or do no matter they need.

The top and face additionally ought to lean in the direction of one course or the opposite. I’m unsure that I’d need it to ever be straight up.

This pose is really finest for a lone particular person within the scene. So contemplate it for social media profile photographs, relationship photographs, trend, modeling, and basic portraits. If you need somebody to look glamorous, this is among the finest sitting poses you’ll be able to work with.

On this sitting pose, all of the variation comes from the face and shoulders actually. One knee is all the time going through a forty five diploma angle and the twists come from the hips and decrease again. It might work very properly with legs crossed too! You possibly can have your topic face away from or in the direction of the principle mild within the scene.

Really in my expertise, this pose doesn’t actually have any disadvantages. But it surely does take a little bit of core energy and elements of the physique might begin falling asleep after some time.

When you’re photographing a pair, have among the members stand behind and to the aspect of the particular person sitting.

Straight on and leaning ahead.

This pose works with somebody that’s barely thicker within the core part. Within the photograph above, I’m utilizing myself for example. Once I’m sitting straight up, it appears a bit extra awkward as a result of I’m not snug. But when I lean ahead extra, the sitting pose turns into way more snug. It additionally works properly for when individuals are sitting on the bottom. Don’t overlook to convey the pinnacle ahead a bit too to eradicate shadows from below the chin. Sometimes, legs open is how this can be and due to this fact it’s additionally a way more relaxed pose.

This can be a implausible sitting pose to do with of us casually. When you’re photographing a marriage or occasion, shortly have the themes do one thing like this if time permits.

On this pose, the forearms are on the knees. However the arms can do a wide range of various things. They can be utilized with one arm on the thigh and one other arm doing no matter else. For this, seek the advice of the part and information that we’ve given on posing the palms.

The perfect issues about this sitting pose is that it’s tremendous snug. The more serious issues? Effectively, not everybody appears nice in it and also you’ve received to regulate how far they sit ahead or again.

The Facet Sofa Sit

This pose really solely works if somebody is in a sofa due to the inherent design and the way a lot house there may be. Their arm is excessive part, one leg is up, they’re sitting again at an angle the place the higher a part of the torso is nearer to you. This makes this actually, actually easy. It can provide off a extra informal vibe very simply as a result of it’s such a relaxed sitting pose.

It’s arduous for folks to not look good on this pose with some minor changes once they sit sideways. On this pose, the legs are principally to the aspect although one knee is in entrance of the opposite whereas all the load is being distributed in on thigh and one of many glute cheeks.

This pose can work for just about something. However will solely work properly with a lone particular person. Why? Effectively, take into consideration how couches work.

Variations come from the way you place the palms. They’ll relaxation on the sofa and on their very own physique. The remaining comes from the facial features. That’s really it. In any other case, it’s a flawless pose that by no means appears to fail.

There are critically no disadvantages to a pose like this. Every little thing is superior about it.

The Chair Turned Round

Maybe one among my favourite sitting poses is having somebody take a eating chair, flip it round, and straddle it. This enables for a ton of consolation and lets them experiment with varied expressions with ease. Evidently, this can be a very relaxed sitting pose. It forces the legs open, which is a really relaxed gesture.

When taking photographs like this, I ask them a wide range of questions and allow them to naturally categorical themselves. My questions and engagement makes them overlook that the digicam isn’t there. Generally it’s a must to heat them up with not capturing at instances.

One of these sitting pose solely works for a single particular person. And customarily talking, it’s a much more informal vibe right here. I wouldn’t use this for a company headshot in any respect.

The variations fairly actually are available once you ask somebody a query that elicits a selected emotion. With Alberto above, I used to be asking him about one thing fairly existential that he wanted to consider.

The benefits are that you simply’re getting pure, candid moments. The drawback is that you simply simply must be adequate to foretell once they’ll occur.

Generally a strobe going off can take somebody out of the second. So can also a digicam shutter. So think about using a silent set off and an off-camera distant launch. Most fashionable cameras have Wifi and Bluetooth that may assist set off the shutter.

Additional Examples of Nice Sitting Poses And Suggestions

We’re going to go away you with a wide range of sitting poses for you to try. An important factor to learn about these poses is that they work not solely due to the strategies, but additionally due to the general scene. Completely different sitting poses work for various conditions. Whether or not a mannequin sits for you otherwise you’re photographing somebody getting good photographs completed, these can assist.

Among the poses are extra fashion-oriented whereas others are extra magnificence oriented. But others actually inform a narrative about somebody and what they do in these environmental portraits.

Make sure you keep in mind that not the whole lot is ready in stone, it’s a must to make your individual variations as wanted.

The Easy Off-Angle Pose

Sitting Cross Legged on the Floor

Sitting up Greater, Off-angle

Sitting Straight

Sitting Ahead, head Up, and Off-Angle

Have the Topic Additionally Face Away From You

Interact Their Thoughts if They’re Not a Skilled When Doing Sitting Portraits

The Fingers Imply Every little thing in a Sitting Portrait

Posture is Key; Not All Good Posture Works for Photographs

The LEgs Aside Can Actually Assist

Use Dinner Chairs With Backs

Don’t Have them Face You All of the Time

Use the Fingers as Cushions For the Face

Twisting the Physique Works

Capturing Sitting Poses From Above Completely Works

Change the Poses Up Lest They Get Uncomfortable

Transfer the Legs Round

If You’re Not Capturing From Above or Beneath, At all times be Eye Stage

Observe The place the Gentle is Coming From

Flat Lighting Can Assist Every little thing

Play with the Legs

Don’t Overlook In regards to the Chin

Simply As a result of They Sit Ahead Doesn’t Imply they Can’t Lean Again

Physique Language Generally Trumps All

Bear in mind The Shoulders

Modify the Lean

We Typically Have Topics Look In direction of the Gentle

No One Trick Works Each Time