How to Find Your State of Mind In Front of The Camera
Take A Deep Breath
Lights, camera, action! All of a sudden, the camera’s on you. Wait a minute, hold up. You’re not feeling mentally prepared for this. That’s normal, and that’s okay. Stepping into a professional portrait session can potentially bring on a lot of pressure, especially if there’s children to be kept under control! This is perfectly normal and can happen to anyone. This is why we offer meet and greets at the studio to get your child comfortable and acclimated before the photo shoot day. We also schedule you around your child’s nap time! These are all important things that can be done to ensure everyone is in a great mood when it comes time to bring out the camera. Here are some tips and tricks I like to tell clients to prepare for our session date:
Stop and take a deep breath. Slow down and perform your morning rituals. Take care of all your self care needs a few days following up to the session date. Practice saying positive mantras to yourself each day. Eat healthy meals. The mind needs to be nourished, feed it happy and hopeful thoughts. Recognize and acknowledge the negative thoughts. This of course is a skill we must all learn in life, and I encourage you to start practicing now. Plus, having a happy and healthy mind will surely improve your photography session!
Be In The Moment
I need you to pay attention here. You have two choices. You can either enter a completely creative mental space and be in your own world (this is typical for dancers, performers, public speakers, etc.) or you can stay in the present moment and collaborate with me. Here’s the thing, you can’t see yourself while I’m photographing you (until I show you the back of my camera or computer). Therefore, every movement, expression, and thought will be captured fluidly. The more you can pay attention to what you’re doing, the better the outcome will be in the final images. We cannot hold onto stress in these moments. Rather, we want our bodies to be free spirited and fluid like water. This is why children photograph so well, because they are often playing and thinking in the present moment. Forget all your to-dos and push the worries out of your mind. The only thing that matters right now is feeling connected to yourself and the people getting photographed with you. The mind is much happier and much more grateful in the present moment.
What Message Do You Want to Show The World Through These Photographs?
Going into the session and driving to the decided location or studio, these thoughts are going to run through your mind. What are people going to think of these pictures of me? Let’s reframe this thought. How about, what message do you want to show the world through these photographs? If your world is just your family, then this is an intimate experience you get to share with them. If the session is just for you, all the power to you! If the session is for your community, then let’s get the people saying good things! Whatever or for whomever the photos are taken for, this question is important and you should be thinking about it before going into your session. If it’s a family portrait session you can show the world how much you and your family love each other, or how much you care about your family. If it’s a senior portrait session, you can show the world how far you’ve come through education and all that you have achieved. If it’s a branding portrait session, you can show the world what you can bring to the table through your business and how you can be of service to others.
These thoughts can stay in the present moment and honor all that you have achieved thus far. This thought process can also typically bring your mind into the future, and how you want your future to look. For example, you have a headshot session done because you want to make yourself known to the world and connect with future clients, or network with other employers and businesses. How we perceive ourselves now, and how we want to perceive ourselves for the future, will guide you through your photography session. This is what will be your drive and motivation to do those poses in front of the camera, to be in the proper head space in front of the camera, and to do it with confidence and grace.