[By Jason Lee]

Looking good in photographs are not reserved for supermodels in fashion shoots. With the advent of facebook and a host of other popular social networking sites, you never know when you are tagged in a photo for the world to see. Many of us, being mere mortals rather than picture-perfect supermodels tend to freeze up, or go in for that fake, cheesy smile. But you’d be happy to know that you don’t need to be born photogenic in order to look nice in photos. Just follow these 10 simple tips to ensure that you’d always look good in front of the camera.

1.) Dress to impress

If you know that a photo opportunity will present itself at an event (which it always does), dress nicely. Avoid wearing stripey outfits, clashing colors or uncomfortable clothing and accessories. Keep it simple, neat and ironed. If you’re wearing something sheer, realize that it will become more transparent under certain lighting and camera flashes.

2.) Do a quick check

If there’s a mirror around or a reflection, take a quick glance at yourself. Check that your clothes aren’t crumpled, hair’s not messed up or something stuck between your teeth. If you can’t find a reflection or there’s no time, ask the photographer to do a quick check.

3.) Don’t hunch

Slouching not only makes you appear shorter in photos, but often brings about unsightly stomach rolls too. Straighten up and stand tall, as if you’re head’s being pulled by a vertical string.

4.) Relax the shoulders

When we’re nervous or stressed, our shoulders automatically tense up without us knowing. Take notice of them and subtly roll them back and push them down.

5.) Think happy thoughts

There’s nothing worse than a forced smile, so think back to a moment when you were truly happy. That vacation you went on? Maybe your favourite niece or your loved ones ? Or that person you have a crush on? Hopefully that happy thought will bring a more genuine smile to your face.

6.) Smile with your eyes

Model Tara Banks will always stress on the importance of smiling with your eyes. If your lips are smiling but your eyes are all tensed up, you’d end up with an awkward photo. Simply relax the eyes and eyebrows and don’t strain your eyes trying to look at the camera. If needed, close your eyes for a second before opening them to take the photo.

7.) Location, location, location

An interesting background can make a huge difference to the photo. Have a look at your surrounding and see if you spot anything intriguing. It can just be a textured wall or a colorful backdrop.

8.) Strike a pose

No need to come up with the extreme poses you might find in fashion magazines. Maybe just twisting your body slightly, or putting your hands in your pocket. Also, have some fun with your poses or maybe interact with a prop or another person.

9.) Use the light

Lighting can make or break the photo. When you’re in front of the camera, make sure that the lights will hit your face at a desirable angle. For example, Standing directly under harsh lighting can make shadows appear under your eyes, so you may need to lift and tilt your face.

10.) Practice makes perfect

Yes, practicing in front of the mirror will make you a pro when you need to look your best in front of the camera. When you’re alone, practice a few poses, try out a few different smiles and work out your better looking side.

 

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