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  #1  
Old 09-29-2006, 07:31 PM
ChuDizzel ChuDizzel is offline
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Why are some people more photogenic than others?

Why are some people more photogenic than others? Is there certain characteristics that make people more photogenic? I am not photogenic at all, but my sisters are. My pictures look nothing like what I see when I look in the mirror. Is that normal?
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  #2  
Old 09-29-2006, 07:58 PM
Shagnasty Shagnasty is offline
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Well cameras don't just make stuff up but I think there is such a things as being photogenic. Cameras only capture a snapshot of you. In addition, you are expected to pose in planned pictures. Some people just aren't good at posing. Their standard pose may even be unflattering. Some attractive people are attractive because of the way they are composed, the way they carry themselves, and the way their personality imprints itself on their body and style. Cameras aren't good at capturing all of that so some people look more unflattering in pictures than they actually seem in real life and probably vice versa.
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Old 09-29-2006, 08:15 PM
MaddyStrut MaddyStrut is offline
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I've wondered about this. I take good pictures. In fact, I look better in photos than in real life. It's a mixed blessing. On the one hand, yeah, I look really good in photos. On the other, people who've seen me only in photos are sometimes let down when they meet me since I don't look as cute in person.

For some reason, I look better in two dimensions.
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  #4  
Old 09-29-2006, 08:18 PM
Maastricht Maastricht is offline
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This former model gives classes on "How to Be Photogenic" . As does Wiki.
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  #5  
Old 09-29-2006, 08:42 PM
Eve Eve is offline
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It's bone structure, dahling, it's all in the bones.
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  #6  
Old 09-29-2006, 10:02 PM
Zsofia Zsofia is offline
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I was told, once, that often people who aren't photogenic have asymmetrical faces, which is more obvious when you look at a picture and less obvious on a moving face. I don't know, but I do know that I take uglier pictures than you do. I know you think I don't, but I promise I do.
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  #7  
Old 09-29-2006, 10:04 PM
Zsofia Zsofia is offline
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Oh, and I look awful in pictures where I'm in the background and don't even know there's a picture being taken, too, so it's not just that I get nervous in front of the camera. There's a classic New Year's photo in which I appear that way - I look exactly like a very low rent drag queen who isn't even trying. Possibly with a hangover. Possibly with an overdose.
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  #8  
Old 09-29-2006, 10:20 PM
Joey P Joey P is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zsofia
I look exactly like a very low rent drag queen who isn't even trying.
I can rent drag queens? I've got two on layaway.

Anyways, I remember hearing years ago that in your face their are two muscles that control the corners of your mouth. One that pulls them 'back' and one that pulls them kinda 'up.' When you smile because of something happy/funny etc... they both pull creating a normal smile. When you 'pose' for a picture you only use the ones that pull 'back.' Photogenic people can voluntarily use the 'up' muscles as well, thereby creating a realistic smile on demand. That may be a bunch of BS, but it's what I had heard along time ago and it always made sense to me. But I think what everyone else is saying applies as well.
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  #9  
Old 09-30-2006, 05:38 AM
WonJohnSoup WonJohnSoup is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shagnasty
Well cameras don't just make stuff up but I think there is such a things as being photogenic. Cameras only capture a snapshot of you.

Cameras don't make stuff up but the photographer can. I shoot for a magazine but generally not portraiture so I only have a little experience there (though probably still a lot more than the majority of people out there). Anyways, there are lots of way to trick the brain when you're working in 2D. And in my experience, it's been easier for me to pull some of this stuff off with people who have more "angular" features than "rounded" features. I don't prefer skinny women at all, but I have to admit I personally think it's a lot easier to make their photos come out right than when I'm working with people with rounder profiles. Could be that all the techniques I've learned have been centric around certain people with certain features, I wouldn't be surprised, but my guess is that having angular features is part of what makes some people "photogenic."
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  #10  
Old 09-30-2006, 10:25 AM
Zsofia Zsofia is offline
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No, angular features is what makes you look like an aging drag queen who started drinking the night before. I mean, the plural of anecdote is not data, but angular features is part of my problem.
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  #11  
Old 09-30-2006, 11:30 AM
xnylder xnylder is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WonJohnSoup
(...) And in my experience, it's been easier for me to pull some of this stuff off with people who have more "angular" features than "rounded" features. (...)
Interesting! This might explain why most pictures of me turn out terrible. I have extremely round, fair features and while I think I look reasonably good in real life, in most photos I look awful. In almost every photograph of me I look paler and pudgier than the Pillsbury Doughboy after a lard binge.
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  #12  
Old 10-01-2006, 11:35 AM
Lust4Life Lust4Life is offline
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I just cant help it !Its just a gift I suppose.
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  #13  
Old 10-01-2006, 12:16 PM
Horatio Hellpop Horatio Hellpop is offline
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Women with high, wide cheekbones seem to photograph well no matter how pretty they are in person. I used to work with a woman who looked kind of butch and frowsy in person, but her "bad" features flattened out and disappeared in any photograph. On film, she always looked like a million bucks.
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  #14  
Old 10-01-2006, 07:13 PM
Jennshark Jennshark is offline
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I look really, really, really terrible in photos. IRL I have rosacea, middle-aged acne, a round face, and small eyes . . . despite all these drawbacks, I look in the mirror and often think that I'm cute-ish and other people have mentioned that I'm nice looking. However, it takes just one photo to dispel any notions of that! In particular, photography seems to act like a high-DPI skin-scan, highlighting the rosacea and other skin flaws.

I also don't smile with my teeth showing, so in photos I look like a muppet.

and no, I'm not posting a picture !
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  #15  
Old 10-01-2006, 07:17 PM
freckafree freckafree is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WonJohnSoup
Cameras don't make stuff up but the photographer can."
One thing I've noticed with portrait photographers is that, if you wear glasses, they position your head so as to reduce the flash glare on your glasses. This is not necessarily the most flattering angle.
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  #16  
Old 10-01-2006, 07:22 PM
jabiru jabiru is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zsofia
Oh, and I look awful in pictures where I'm in the background and don't even know there's a picture being taken, too, so it's not just that I get nervous in front of the camera. There's a classic New Year's photo in which I appear that way - I look exactly like a very low rent drag queen who isn't even trying. Possibly with a hangover. Possibly with an overdose.
I heard everyone in the world has a twin. I didn't believe it until now.
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  #17  
Old 10-01-2006, 07:24 PM
jjimm jjimm is offline
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I am friends with a girl who is without a shadow of a doubt the best looking woman I have ever seen in real life.

This is the kind of woman who walks down the street, and multiple guys drop stuff and walk into walls. Then leave their shit and run over to her to ask if they can help carry her bag. I'm sure she's caused car wrecks. She is absolutely stunning.

Yet she doesn't look good in photos. Well, her body does (yowza), but facially in photos, even though she's clearly breathtaking when you meet her, she looks totally dowdy. I have not been able to explain it. Perhaps it's because she doesn't have "high, wide cheekbones" as Krokodil says.

Having said all that about this girl, I have to say that my wife is also very beautiful, and very photogenic too. (In case she reads this.)
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  #18  
Old 10-02-2006, 03:29 AM
WonJohnSoup WonJohnSoup is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by freckafree
One thing I've noticed with portrait photographers is that, if you wear glasses, they position your head so as to reduce the flash glare on your glasses. This is not necessarily the most flattering angle.
Kinda depends a lot on the person, especially in regards to the sex. Camera at eye level is neutral, camera slightly above can be good for women or people with more than one chin by making them aim their heads slightly up, and camera slightly below to enhance masculinity (provided they don't bend the head too far down). Not many photography rules are completely rigid, however, and fashion photographers have their own methods of controlled madness.

Usually for glasses though, the trick is to just tilt the glasses themselves to get rid of the glare. Like, the arms of the glasses tilted up so that they're not actually hanging on the ears but rather hugging your temples. Most of the time it's not noticable in photos. Though it doesn't work for certain hairstyles obviously.
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