A Model’s Skills

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What are modelling skills?

So what are these modelling skills? First of all there’s the range of poses you can do. You have to learn poses so that whenever you need another pose, there’s one in your head ready to get into. A lot of photographers will ask you to give them a different pose for each click of the camera. Sometimes they’ll guide you into a pose they want, generally by demonstrating it, so it still helps if you are aware of your physicality (how your body moves).

A good range of facial expressions linked to emotion keywords is also useful – for example despairing, sad, happy, elated, joyful, excited, coy or seductive. Posing for photos is a lot like stage acting – you often have to over-emphasise in order to convey all the expression of feeling or emotion you need for the shot, which lasts less than 1/100th of a second. As a rule of thumb, if it hurts or makes you feel like an idiot, it’s probably going to look great on camera.

Lastly you may be asked for moving poses, so that a sense of movement can be recorded in the image. One of these is walking; not the walking you do down the high street, but the sort of walk you’d do in a catwalk show. These moving poses are the most difficult to learn, but are a lot easier if you’ve had some dance training or do sports. Of which more later…

There’s all a point to this, and that is to create an image. What the image is trying to show depends upon the genre of the modelling job. In catwalk modelling, you’re showing the clothes, and it’s the clothes that are important, not the model. Photographically you’re either trying to show off clothes, or a catalogue product, or your hair, or facial beauty makeup, or an emotion or concept.