Notes – Lighting and Posing with Bambi Cantrell – Day 1/Session 3 (CreativeLive)

Notes from the workshop: Lighting and Posing with Bambi Cantrell – Day 1/Session 3 – Main focus : Bride/Groom Couple Shoot

  • Look for neutral environment.
  • Use dof to make background go away.
  • Have groom lean towards bride with shoulder.
  • Have groom loosen tie to relax.
  • Have bride lean hip away from camera.
  • Men do not tilt head into down shoulder.
  • If person has a bent nose, photograph into the bend of the nose to avoid making it look larger.
  • Move around subject to find the best angle.
  • Sample banter : “what ever u do, do not smile”.
  • Sample posing: Set feet, push hip away from camera, rotate front foot a little forward, bend knee closest to camera, lean shoulder nearest camera towards camera.
  • Be body part specific when giving posing direction: “Hug him with your with your cheek.”
  • Lots of good quick couple posing in this segment
  • Connect couples through posing.
  • To decide on frame, decide where moment is happening
  • When having the subject gaze away have them look towards the light
  • Sample pose: girls cross leg in x when wearing a dress
  • Sample posing: With your chest, lean forward a little bit
  • Bride banter to elicit emotion : how did u pick out your dress? What was it about this dude over here that made u realize he was the one? Think about what you were thinking when he asked you to marry him.. Describe the proposal.
  • People will be much more relaxed if you start off with them interacting with each other instead of the camera.
  • Good size jaw line: high camera angle to accentuate.
  • Banter: That’s the fakest smile in the universe
  • It’s not about the hug, it’s about what happens afterwards
  • Banter: Hug her like it’s the last time u are ever going to hug
  • When hugging have them whisper something in eat of main subject
  • Always give compliments
  • At end say you are done then catch last reaction of subjects
  • Don’t want to see side of hand. Turn it sideways.
  • Exercise to help loosen the subject: walk towards me with some sass. swing hips your hips. Walk putting one leg in front of the other. You may not get get aphoto but it will break it up for the next set.
  • When couple different height don’t try to make them the same height but bring heads closer together by leaning together. Have taller person push hip away and then lean towards camera. Have smaller subject slightly closer to camera. Or have taller person sit on arm of chair.
  • For a typical family portrait session, Bambi shows 60 to 70 photos to clients.

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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2 Responses to Notes – Lighting and Posing with Bambi Cantrell – Day 1/Session 3 (CreativeLive)

  1. Derrick says:

    Thank you for this! any tips on photoshop exp. sharpening, skin retouch?

  2. Drew says:

    I’m just starting to learn Photoshop. I recently picked up “Professional Portrait Retouching Techniques for Photographers using Photoshop” by Scott Kelby. If I find any good (short) tips I’ll put them in here but I suspect they will mostly be to elaborate.

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