Working with Full Figure Models


posted on 8th of september, 2008

Have you ever tried to make an effective, great, full-body shot for a plus size model? A-ha... not such an easy task! Logic of working with full body shots of plus size models is quite different, and challenging. While head shots and half-body shots are essentially the same (save for little things, like asking to raise her chin higher for a longer neck), full-body shots require a different approach.

Posing is easy for a slim model as no matter what pose she is "showing off", it is quite easy to achieve interesting angles. Even a normal stance with a slightly raised hip and a hand on the waist with an elbow angled out (standard fashion pose 101) gives a photographer a good shot as there are clear angles and interesting lines.

The same pose would not work for a full size model as curves of the body will hide much of the pose. Just standing there, or going for "moderate" poses isn't quite effective for a full size model. Instead, if you are full size, you really have to emphasize any pose: all angles and poses have to be maximized, enhanced. For the same pose to work for a full size model, she would have to curve her waist more, angle out her elbow a lot more and have a wider posture to show off her legs distinctly.

Apparently, there are very very few images of plus size models on DT - which means it is definitely a niche and a market to fill! There is only a handful of studio images and almost no images at all of plus size models in candid, real-life settings. Weight issues are a hot topic in today's culture, yet, all we see are slim, size 0 models. What we need is more plus sizes, illustrating challenges of working out and losing weight, feeling comfortable in their skin, being happy and being beautiful!

I just worked with a beautiful full-figure model, and I can't wait to show off all the fun, amazing images we did! This is my second plus-size experience, definitely very interesting, great, and rewarding. And I am very grateful to the amazing plus-size models who love the skin they are in!

PS: as there are not too many images here on DT to illustrate the Do's and Don'ts of poses for plus size, I might just have to do more research and write a lengthier tutorial on plus-size posing 101. I am still learning of course, so it'd be helpful to me as well :)

Happy shooting !

Comments (7)

Posted by Fleyeing on January 29, 2010
I just stumbled upon this old blog post now. Very informational! I guess the reason that there are not many full body shots around is that you need a moderate deep studio and long backdrops to do it. For overwhites, you need to have more equally lit background lighting. Bobby Deal emphasized this in one of his blogs.

If you would have an update on this post, I would gladly read it.
Posted by Mariv on July 07, 2009
very interesting article. more things to try. ty!
Posted by Gaja on July 06, 2009
Thank you for a very interesting article, I'll try to get my model to do as you says, but she is not always so co-operative. That's how it is when you want to do self portraits. ;)
Posted by Amyemilia on June 11, 2009
Being plus-sized myself, I really appreciate your work. Love that "no makeup" shot!
Posted by Ellenboughn on September 09, 2008
Excellent post! Plus models are in demand not only for full body shots but in lifestyle shoots as well mixed in with a group as long as the model looks proud and confident and NOT like an outsider because of her big is beautiful look. Thanks!
Posted by Ellenboughn on September 09, 2008
Excellent post! Plus models are in demand not only for full body shots but in lifestyle shoots as well mixed in with a group as long as the model looks proud and confident and NOT like an outsider because of her big is beautiful look. Thanks!
Posted by Rebeccaosborn on September 09, 2008
yes, would love a tutorial on how models should pose when taking their photograph! thanks for these tips above!! nice shots too!



Comments (7)

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Photo credits: Nikolay Mamluke, Olga Bogatyrenko.

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