Notes – Lighting and Posing with Bambi Cantrell – Day 1/Session 2 (CreativeLive)

This section is Bambi (and a couple of the students) posing and shooting a model in a black bustier plus stockings with a garter and lace skirt:

  • The first thing I do when I walk into any room is see where is my chosen location for photography. Where is the location where is going to give me the biggest bang for my buck with out a lot of work. I find two or three locations with interest and not a lot of fluff.
  • Like to avoid using flash if possible. Allows people to forget about the camera if you use window light.
  • My goal is to capture beautiful pictures but also interesting ones. The client should look at it and say “oh, that’s kinda quirky”.
  • I don’t mind if they hate a picture. I just want to make sure they have an opinion. If your pictures are boring, it is over. Better to have someone hate your picture then to find it boring.
  • Photograph on shadow side
  • I find doorways interesting. Frames subject. Easy to remove doorknob in photoshop.
  • Don’t say “spread your legs, say separate you feet”
  • If I can’t get light into the eyes for a nice catchlight, have them look down or look away. That way you don’t expect to have the light in the eyes.
  • have subject sit on edge of the seat. Makes them sit up a little straighter and arch their back.
  • Break it up with poses even if it doesn’t work. Let the subject have fun. If they are not having fun they are going to hate your pictures.
  • Getting up high eliminates under the chin (good for mature women) and makes eye look larger when you tilt the face down.
  • Instructions Bambi gave to model when standing flat footed: Separate your feet about a shoulders length. Good job. And your hip on this side (held left hand up), push it towards my hand. Lovely.
  • Second pose: turned her body 135 deg away from the light, hand on window side on hip, turned face back towards the light, lean shoulders towards the camera.Placed majority of body in shadow (important for bigger woman), gave shape to breasts, light now fell on contour of body and arm making everything look slimmer.
  • Leaning towards camera causing waist line to be pulled back creating strong diagonal line which makes anyone look slender.
  • Get your subject to sit on their thigh rather than their backside. Have them roll their hips towards the thigh you want them on.
  • When you have your subject posed, squint at him/her to see what looks brightest. If it’s not what you want, fix it.

My Notes postings are intended as a supplement to the workshop. If you are at all interested in this subject I highly recommend you purchase the full 3 day course from There is no substitute to watching Bambi in action and at $149, it’s a great deal. The amount of information she provides is incredible.

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