In portraits, you should try to hide blemishes and make the subject look his best. You can hide
birthmarks by turning the subject so the marked part of his face is away from the camera or so a shadow
falls across that part of his face.
Employing the following suggestions should enable you to pose the subject in a proper yet relaxed
a. Do not touch the subject, but tell him how to pose so that every part of his body is properly
positioned, even those parts that will not show up in the photograph. It is particularly important to relax
the part of the subject that is not in the portrait because any strain will show in the subject's face.
b. The subject should be erect but relaxed. That is, he should stand or sit straight and tall but
not stiffly. Positioning the subject's head and shoulders slightly high in the frame helps to convey a
sense of strength.
c. His feet should be slightly apart, and his trunk should be straight, not twisted.
d. The subject's hands should be relaxed and farther from the lights than his face. When the
hand is relaxed, the fingers curve slightly toward the palm. A clenched fist or a tight grip on an object is
a strain, and when the subject puts his hands in his pockets it pulls his shoulders out of position.
e. Less light should strike the subject's hands than his face. You can accomplish this by
feathering or turning the light so only the edges of the beam reach the hands and by using screens,
barndoors, or shields.
f. Your subject's shoulders should be level with the ground. They should be parallel with the
film for a fullface identification portrait and perpendicular to the film for a profile identification portrait.
For other portraits, the subject's shoulders should be at a 45-degree angle with the film.
Positioning the Subject's Head.
For an identification portrait the subject's head should be level. He should face straight ahead
in the same direction as his trunk. For a formal or informal portrait which calls for a head and
shoulders shot, the subject may tilt his head. Such a portrait should not be a fullface
view looking straight at the camera, but between a fullface and a profile which is at a