This week, I am helping multiple clients in selecting outfits for their senior photographs. Now, outfit selection for any photograph can be confusing. So, here are some tips to consider as you plan for senior photos, or any time you find yourself in front of a camera:
1) Color. When being photographed, it is important to wear the colors that look best on you and to coordinate your entire outfit based on these colors. It is also important to understand what colors look best in photographs. For example, just because you love how you look in yellow doesn’t mean that it is the best photography option! A good rule of thumb is to pair a vibrant color with a neutral color. The vibrant color will add interest to the photograph, while the neutral color will ground it. Just make sure that your vibrant photo isn’t too bright that it overpowers you and that your neutral color isn’t too dull that it washes you out or fades away next to the brighter color.
2) Shape. No one wants to feel like they look larger than life (literally!) in a picture. Clothing shape is an important aspect in overcoming this problem. When selecting your outfit for a photograph, ask yourself if any area of your ensemble feels uncomfortable when you have it on. Chances are, if your pants are a little tight in the thighs or your armholes are pinching you a bit, those areas will also look visually uncomfortable or too tight as well. On the other hand, if you clothes are too large, or hang off of your body, this will also give you a larger presence in the photograph. You also want to select clothing, both in photos and everyday life, that compliments your shape and outlines the positive areas of your figure, without highlighting your areas of concern.
3) Location & Feeling. It is important to consider the location and feeling of your photographs. For example, if your background is a field of flowers, you may not want to be pictured in a long or too formal of a dress because it could go against the overarching theme of your photos. However, if you are going for a highly dramatic photo with contrast, a formal dress might be the unexpected element your photograph requires. In addition, you must consider the coloring of your background and know how to pair your clothing colors with it accordingly. If you do not blend effortlessly with your background or contrast with it nicely, your photo will feel lacking.
4) Longevity. Identifying both the classic and trendy elements of any outfit you wear in a photograph is a key to creating a great picture. This will help you understand how long your photo will come across as relevant. For example, in one of my senior photos, I wore a red in a red polo (which was a great color choice for me) and lace up denim crop jeans that scream early 2000’s. If I had been more aware of what trends I was incorporating into my photograph and how those crop pants would be outdated within a matter of minutes, I might have selected a more basic style of pants that would still be relevant years after the photo was taken. Don’t select your outfit just because you like how it looks now, but think about how it will withstand the fashion test of time.
Please contact me if you would like additional tips on styling any of your upcoming photographs.