Top Tips for a Sensational Senior Photo Session

May 16, 2022  •  Leave a Comment

Top Tips for a Sensational Senior Photo Session

As a portrait photographer here in Fayetteville, I get asked all the time about how to take a great Senior Photo.  It’s completely normal to feel a little awkward when taking senior portraits. Many seniors tend to feel self-conscious about their appearance because they feel uncomfortable taking photos on their own.  Despite living in a selfie world, being in front of a professionals camera and posing for someone else seems a bit intimidating.  I have tips for when I am taking someones portrait or headshot...

Below are our top five tips for taking on your senior portrait with grace and confidence and leaving with photos that you will love for years to come.

1. Use your eyes.  

Use your eyes to express emotion. When you smile naturally your whole face lights up and your eyes look bright and awake. Before the photo session practice smiling in the mirror and use different expressions to see what looks best.  Your eyes are what draws people in focus on the eyes and the rest will follow.

2. Relax.                                                                                                                                                         

Great photos happen when the subject is relaxed and confident. Let the excitement of you photo session show through the lens as you take a moment and breathe, relax and just have fun. You may feel silly during this process but we will do everything we can to help you feel more comfortable.  Photos will show our feeling anxiety or nervousness.  In the words of the late great Jack Palance "confidence is very sexy", relaxed show confidence, confident will be relaxed.

3. Breathe.

This may sound obvious, but breathing is key to capturing a natural look. Take time to practice taking a deep breath while smiling in front of the mirror.  Slowly release the air while holding the smile and notice how your face and eyes settle into a natural and relaxed expression. Allow your eyes to “smile” by focusing on the apples of your cheeks pressing upwards. When in doubt, just breathe.

4. Move.

Staying stationary can sometimes produce a very staged and cheesy look. Just because you are sitting or standing still doesn’t mean you can’t change the angle of your body to create a look that is fresh and inspired. Try leaning into the camera slightly to appear more engaged, shift your weight from left to right, or simply move your chin slightly up and down for different shots as this gives us a variety of facial expressions to work with.  This kinda goes with #2, relaxed isn't stationary and stationary doesn't come out well.  Through movement some great shots get developed - and as a side note, you'll probably get more photos as we get into finding more poses that flow into one another.

5. Beautify.

This goes for everyone. Ladies, spend some extra time getting your hair blown out, get your makeup done and choose an outfit that makes you look and feel your best. As for the men, take a shower and shave. When you look your best, you feel your best and when you feel your best, you are naturally more confident. Go the extra mile to walk into your senior session feeling confident, attractive, prepared, and inspired.  Kinda sums up all the above points.  If you don't have a great makeup or hair skill, ask your photographer.  As a portrait photographer we have people we know we can call to ensure you look your best.  It may cost a bit more, but enjoy the experience and get pampered for the day.  


There you go there are my top 5 tips for a great senior session - or any session really.  Whether its portraits, headshots or senior photos keep these 5 tips in mind and your session will go great.  Lastly, if in doubt ask your photographer.  



- Darin / / /

Professional photographers in the Fayetteville, NC area specializing in Headshots, Portraits, Real Estate, Art, Black and White, Social Media and photo editing.

Serving the following areas in North Carolina: Fayetteville, Fort Bragg, Spring Lake, Sanford, Hope Mills, Raeford, Lillington, Lumberton, Dunn, Southern Pines, Sanford, Pinehurst, Southern Pines, Raleigh, Fuquay-Varina, Laurinburg, Eastover, Vander, Anderson Creek, Wilmington, NC - and all points in between.



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