Monday, August 19, 2013

The Art of Taking a Better Photograph

Eydie and I just returned from our working week-end in the wilds of northern Wisconsin.  We ate well, slept much longer than mothers are allowed, and collaged through two laundry baskets full of supplies.  Part of our week-end was spent attempting to create a photo journal of our progress.  We learned some lessons about personal photojournalism that we would like to share with you, our gentle readers.  

Case in point is this photo of Prairie Eydie.  Eydie has long known how to properly pose for a photograph.  Notice how she angles her body for a 3/4's presentation to the camera.  Note, too, how she places the beverage glass in the foreground, therefore minimizing her hands and arms.  The saucy tilt of the head lends to a demure yet vibrant  presentation.  Contrast with the following:

Because of it's placement, my meaty forearm looks like it belongs to a construction worker or a pro wrestler, and I do appear to be suffering from a case of "man hand."  If I had only angled my body a bit and pulled that glass in front of me.  I also need to work on the saucy tilt.  My gaze is much too bold and assertive.

While I may have failed at this first bit of portraiture, I do know a few tips that I regularly practice.

If you want to avoid the appearance of ropy veined hands, merely keep your paws at or above heart level.  Voila!  Instant youthful smoothness.  This position does cause some limitations when driving or doing household chores, and sorting tomatoes is virtually impossible, but your chances for hand modeling gigs will greatly increase.

 Eydie has adopted this technique for an "instant facelift."  Merely secure your headband under the chin rather behind the neck and jowls vanish.  Since I am not a headband wearing girl, I like to use this alternative method.

Not only are my hands positioned for optimum smoothness (remember, above heart level), but the fine lines around the eyes and the deep brow furrowing are instantly gone.  Both provide us with a more youthful and refreshed appearance.

 Eydie would like to suggest that for full-length portraits, distance from the camera should increase with age.  Right now Eydie is insisting on being a full 50 yards from the photographer.  I like to be in the next county.  When this isn't possible, I employ the use of fun props.  Below is an impromptu example.

Suddenly, my age is no longer an issue.

For a final tip, Eydie reminds all of us that if you wish to appear petite, be sure to place yourself next to someone larger in height and/or girth. 

This photo also uses the sun to provide a halo effect as if Prairie Eydie were touched by a celestial power.  This always gives the sense of ageless, immortal beauty.

It is our hope that these few tips will make your next photograph session less angst producing. Keep your hands up, jowls secured, and an ample distance from the camera.  Remember, too, the halo effect, as demonstrated in this photo of our dear Michael Landon. It is Monday.

Prairie Sherry   


Eydie doesn't like to toot her own horn, but she has been doing some personal portrait counseling for a certain someone who may be moving to a big, white house in a couple of years.  H needs to work on the saucy tilt, and hand that woman a beer!


  1. Just want to tell you girls how much fun it was watching you take your many photos on the porch of that restaurant in Cable, Wi. I found your little scrap paper with the website you gave me while I was cleaning out my purse today. In looking at your photos I spotted the head of my fiance in the background! It was fun watching you two giggle.

  2. I am SO glad that you found us! Next time, you need to join us in the photos. (You fiancé can too!) We had too much fun taking those photos. I think Sharon wrote and awesome blog to go along with them. Stay tuned! Prairie Eydie

  3. Oh! Your fiancé is in the "Facelift" photo. Too bad there isn't a glimpse of you. :-)