I had the most interesting conversation with a friend the other day. I snuck a candid picture of him to send to a mutual friend. He saw it and said “yeah… that’s not my best angle.” So naturally I went on this long tangent about how I was going to post the photo to my IG account and write a caption about how we should love ourselves from every angle. I was kidding of course (because it really wasn’t his best angle lol), but it did get me thinking…
Fast forward to two nights this week. I’ve spent several hours researching posing. I figure if fashion photography is the industry I want to get into (whether as a blogger, model, or social media manager), I should probably have a little bit of knowledge about the craft. Obviously I have some experience posing myself, 179 posts of experience to be exact, and I have been told I have a little natural talent or whatever, but I cannot expect to better myself without working harder to do so. But I digress.
So I was studying posing. Specifically, posing plus size models. And let me just tell you, there are a LOT of things plus size women are not supposed to do. Basically anything that looks candid, we’re not supposed to do. There are very specific poses to use that are designed to be slimming.
Having filled my brain to the brim with posing guidelines from articles and blog posts, I began looking for inspiration on Instagram. I searched a couple plus size hashtags and scrolled through at least a hundred posts, probably more. And when I finally gave up, I was just absolutely not inspired.
I believe the reason I didn’t find any of those posts to be creatively challenging was that they all looked the same. I came to realize that almost every single one of those women was posing the way plus size models are supposed to. Hands on the waist, chin out/down, two thirds turn, etc. They were all following the rules.
But then it hit me: I had been trying to find poses to emulate. Instead, I was inspired to do the opposite. I wanted to break the rules. I wanted to let my arms hang down, and hold my chin up, and stand-straight on.
Here are some pics from previous shoots that aren’t proper posing for plus size women:
My inspiration for showing you these rule-breaking pictures (and hopefully shooting more soon!) isn’t to fight back in a body shaming society. It isn’t to somehow prove that I am the superior Instagram model. It’s to prove, just like I told my friend, that I can love myself at all angles.
We can’t live our lives trying to hold our bodies in positions that are slimming; we would all be walking around with our necks out! Instead we have to be who we are and accept that WE are beauty.