Tips for seated family poses and group posing

Family photos look a whole lot better when people feel comfortable and relaxed and when you avoid cheesy family poses and gimmicks, this film shows you several specific family poses and small group poses that you can use to improve your group photos.

Part 2 of group posing deals with seated family poses, these are quick fire posing tips that you can go out and practise yourself, they can make a real difference to family and group photos and give them a far more professional look.

Also, there are definite ways of flattering people so they look their best, and this film provides some ideas.

Family poses can be difficult to remember, you can download a PDF file 'crib' sheet here to remind you of some of the group poses:-

Seated group poses crib sheet

Here's a few more useful posing tips for groups:-

Avoid Straight Lines
The key to a nice group photo is to make it look interesting. One of the best ways to do this is to avoid straight lines and to position your subjects' heads to create triangles and diagonal lines. Triangles especially are easy with groups of three but can be used with practically any number of people.

Add depth
Adding a foreground, especially when it's out of focus, can make the image look more three-dimensional. You use creative and selective focusing on a single-person portrait, so why not on a group? Just bear in mind the correct aperture to keep everyone sharp, you don't have to go to f16, I use f5.6 (crop sensor camera) for many of my group portraits.

Body Image Concerns
Some people are conscious of their body image, and want to look thinner or even larger. The easiest way to do this is to use things that block part of the person. You can use rocks, trees and other objects but I find the easiest and most natural looking way is to use the bodies of other group members. Bearing in mind that the people closest to the camera appear larger, I usually put the children in front and they can be used to hide other people's body parts if necessary. Everybody wants to look great in their photos!

Make it Natural
Some shots where the families are not looking at the camera can work great, they might be looking at each other, or just playing around. Avoid anything too stiff, static or formal.

Bend Things
Try to avoid straight arms and legs for a more graceful and relaxed look. You don't want people to look like they're standing at attention. generally speaking when people are standing, have them turn in a little and keep their weight on one leg or the either, not both.