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Pinup Facial Expressions by Vivian Vega ~ Houston President

Photo Shoot tipsVivian VegaComment

Today lets discuss pinup facial expressions. I am of course not the all time expert on pin up faces or anything but I have learned a few things and have seen a few things. It's really important to know your own face. For that I seriously suggest sitting in front of a mirror and trying different expressions. It will feel pretty silly but this is very important for you to see. I also recommend that for poses too! Let's say you want to try to pull off some Marilyn Monroe type expressions but after playing around in front of the mirror you find out it's not really working too well...Don't worry! Every face is different and you just need to find your individual strengths and your preferences. I also suggest before a shoot that you look for posing and facial expression inspiration. You really want to be able to get to your shoot and do your best. When I first started getting a good smile in my photo was so difficult and awkward for me but I eventually realized the more I felt awkward about smiling the better it actually looked. I think that was because I wasn't in a genuine setting where I would really smile like when having a conversation with someone. It was hard to make a genuine smile happen when I was just facing a camera. The A, E, I, O, U rule is also a big help too so keep that in mind while practicing and shooting.

When I say it's important to know your own face and your own preferences I say that because I have learned quite a few things about my own face for example....
- Since my eyes are pretty small in order for my eyes to be more visible in a photo I actually look at the top of the camera or at the top of the photographers head instead of directly at the lens
- My left side of my face is way more structured and photogenic than my right side. I don't like very many photos that come from the ride side of my face but every once in a while I shoot a little from that side anyways just in case but I don't focus on that side
- It's more flattering for my face if I slightly tilt my head back instead of forward

Eventually you will get to a point to where when you do an expression you know how it feels and you know you're doing it the way you want.

Vivian Vega

Posing tips by Vivian Vega ~ Houston President

Photo Shoot tipsKristin FreveleComment

Alright lets talk about posing your hands for a shoot...

If you have a hard time posing your hands, don't worry! It's legit one of the hardest things for most people to think about and control during a shoot. When posing try to keep them what I consider "light" you don't want to apply too much grip to something (like when holding a prop if your holding it too tightly your hands will show the stress). You also don't want to apply too much pressure. Keep this in mind, when you can, as some poses may require holding yourself up (or something) and then it cant really be avoided. I recommend keeping your hands as relaxed as you can with light control over them. For pinup you want your hands to be naturally flowing and delicate. I remember when Nita and I went to a workshop earlier this year. At the end I was waiting around and a model asked me to help her pose. She was attempting a pose in where she was sitting and trying to hold her dress slightly above her knees. She was holding the dress in the correct area but appeared to have a death grip on her dress. Please try to AVOID the death grip! I have also noticed that sometimes people will stick their pinky finger way out. That may feel proper but in the photos it's not flattering to your hand to have one finger extremely separated from the rest of your fingers. It can become an unintentional focal point. Another thing to avoid is when you are placing a hand on your face, arm, body, or leg...again, remember to not apply too much pressure as that will create a dent in your skin. Keep your hands light and softly flowing in and out of poses. And that is the advice I have for today. I will add more if I think of anything else and I hope this helps!

Vivian Vega