Barnet Workshops » Sharing Experience, Information, Inspiration

Posing Tip: How to direct your subjects from a distance.

“The smaller your subjects are in the image, the larger wall art they’ll purchase…”
This happens to be true! If you want to sell wall art, like canvas wraps and large metal prints, you should strive to create scenic images, beautiful landscapes, dramatic architectural images, etc. that your subjects happen to be in. Our clients have told us that they would feel self conscious displaying large portraits where their faces are life size. Closeups are fine for a framed 5×7 or 8×10 desk print, but not for wall art…
In addition to posing and directing, when photographing a couple, we like to make them laugh, get them to relax and be themselves… This requires verbal communication. So… If you’re not shooting with a super wide angle, how do you work with your couple from 50 yards away or more? I use my cell phone.
In the image above, the couple’s cell phone was behind them, so they were able to hear every word I said.
I’m about 65 yards away with a 70-200 at 200mm. The image was cropped in a little.
I always make sure the shirts I wear when shooting have a pocket, I put my IPhone in it upside down on speaker mode, and I have the couple place their phone in speaker mode where they can hear me. This way, as I look through the camera, I’m speaking into the phone, and if they have their phone on them, on the ground, behind an object, etc. they can hear me perfectly… Even if it’s a walking shot, I can communicate with them…
Here, the couple’s phone was on top of the right from tire of the car. I was shooting from across a wide and very busy street in down town Los Angeles with a 70-200. I had to wait for a break in traffic and pedestrians at the same time.
We got lucky wit a little breeze at the right time.


Even with walking shots the phones work great! Many times when we do walking shots the couple looks towards the camera, especially if you’re talking to them (or yelling at them). I like to have them alternate from holding hands, to putting their arms around each other, maybe stop and kiss, etc. There’s no way you can get them to do this without being able to communicate.

So there you have it! Give it a try and see if this simple technique works for you! Let us know how you do…

  • March 26, 2015 - 5:17 pm

    Paul Rumohr - OK, that is a fantastic tip!!ReplyCancel

    • March 30, 2015 - 7:31 pm

      admin - My pleasure Paul! It works for me…ReplyCancel

  • March 26, 2015 - 7:01 pm

    Bill Keel - Thanks, good tipReplyCancel

    • March 30, 2015 - 7:30 pm

      admin - You’re welcome Bill! Good luck…ReplyCancel

  • March 26, 2015 - 7:16 pm

    Rick - Great tip, Joe.

    I remember a long shot that I had to get of the bride and groom. Our phones would have made a big difference in their pose had I just used them.

    Thanks for this tip using one of the tools I already have.


    • March 30, 2015 - 7:29 pm

      admin - Now you can try it next time Rick… Great to hear from you! Take care…ReplyCancel

  • March 27, 2015 - 1:42 am

    Karen - Ha! Great idea! Thanks 🙂ReplyCancel

    • March 30, 2015 - 7:28 pm

      admin - You’re welcome Karen! Keep in touch…ReplyCancel

  • March 27, 2015 - 11:10 am

    Kenny Goldberg - Fabulous tip! All these years of doing this and I still learn new things all the time!ReplyCancel

    • March 30, 2015 - 7:27 pm

      admin - We never stop learning Kenny! Take care…ReplyCancel

  • March 28, 2015 - 4:51 am

    Carmen - ahhhh yes! Never thought to use my phone!ReplyCancel

    • March 30, 2015 - 7:26 pm

      admin - Hi Carmen; I thought of it out of sheer necessity one day… I don’t know what made me think of it… I’m glad you like the idea… Let me know how it works out for you…ReplyCancel

  • March 30, 2015 - 11:27 am

    Bruce Hendricks - Great tip! No idea why I never thought of it before, but I’ll be using this now.ReplyCancel

    • March 30, 2015 - 7:18 pm

      admin - I’m glad you found this idea useful Bruce, it works very well for us! Take care…ReplyCancel

  • April 23, 2015 - 6:38 am

    Tee - I just love your work. One day I hope to be able to fly to one of your workshops.ReplyCancel

  • April 27, 2015 - 7:00 am

    Fundy Software, Inc. | Tip • Expert Posing - […] Read more on How to Direct Your Subjects from a Distance. […]ReplyCancel

Your email is never published or shared. Required fields are marked *