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Group Photo Posing Tips
Create a Triangle
- Posing a small group in a triangle or pyramid shape creates a dynamic photo that naturally leads the eye from person to person. Start with one person in the center; arrange the other members of the group around her to form a triangle shape. If the photo if a closeup of a smaller group, start with one person in the center; pose the next person so that his eyes are in line with the first person's nose. Add the rest of the group from the center out, aligning eyes with noses.
- When you're posing a large group in rows, stagger the rows. Start with one row of players; pose the second row with each person placed between the two people in front of him. Line up subsequent rows in the same manner, so that no one is standing directly behind anyone else. Posing your subjects this way helps everyone's face appear in the photo. It also allows the eye to look up and down when viewing the picture, making it more interesting. Make sure that the people in each row are at least a full head taller than those in front of them; use risers or stools if necessary. Keep the distance between rows as small as possible.
- While a perfect group photo with all the subjects looking at the camera and smiling is ideal, it can be difficult to achieve, especially if some of the subjects are children. Instead of forcing your subjects into an unnatural pose, work with the energy of the group. For example, during an outdoor shot, focus in on the children playing in the grass or sand, while mom and dad kiss in the background. Shoot a family from behind, holding hands with the kids. Capturing the natural, un-posed expressions and movements of a group can lead to more interesting and meaningful photographs. No matter how you pose the group, make sure there is adequate lighting and that all of the subjects are lit evenly.
- If your photo subjects are willing, try out some fun poses. Build a human pyramid, for example, or have the groomsmen hold the bride aloft for a fun wedding shot. Have the subjects form letters to spell out a word with their bodies; you might have to shoot from above to get the full effect. Another option is to set up a group shot of the subjects in action, such as at a table set for tea or an exaggerated representation of everyday life. Incorporate whimsical touches into the setting of the photo to bring out the group's personality.