Photo composition, poses, modeling and you!

So here’s where I try out another sporadic idea for a blog post.

This one’s called What Can RL Teach Us?

So a friend of mine in First Life is a professional photographer.  She gets paid to do photography, she gets paid for making the whole mess of a wedding photo shoot or a set of graduation pics look easy and effortless.  She linked me to a photo essay which I found a darned good read, and I think you might as well: Dear Model: Posing Tips for How to Look Your Best in Photographs

What struck me initially was ‘here are some really helpful tips for people making poses in Second Life!’, though as I read, I also realized there were some TERRIFIC tips for photographers and models in SL, as well.  It also inspired a few thoughts on the same lines for me.

#1: The Lens Is A Fish Eye.
Every photo you take, things are slightly distorted.  This is Linden Lab giving us something more ‘real’, though it can be quite annoying when you’re doing photographs of architecture and find that somehow, everything’s leaning inwards at the top of your frame. Not because you wanted it to, it just is.


Now, the beams in the skylight are roughly what I’m thinking of, here.  It’s perfectly reasonable that the beams closer to the camera would have a more steep angle than the ones further from, but you can paint yourself into some very weird corners without considering the forced perspective that Second Life uses to render scenes.
Also, note how I accidentally (seriously, I wasn’t thinking about it) made my elbow the focus of that photograph, instead of my face, or the ceiling, or the corner of the walls near the floor, or…? You have to think about sight lines, think about how the architecture or the layout of your shot draws the viewer’s eye to one place or another.
Additionally, note how not paying attention resulted in the sculpt of my jacket prodding through my forearm.  All I was thinking about when I took the photo was that I wanted to get a good example of how forced perspective can tweak with the shape of what’s in the background, but I managed to put two serious violations in my foreground!

As I was first drafting up this post yesterday, my friend Nigel came up with a post that made me very, very covetous.  He found a really keen bit of an animation HUD which allows you to adjust poses.  I SO WANT THIS THING.  I would recommend it to everyone who ever hops on a poseball, based on Nigel’s post about the thing, which is named Animare.

One of you should buy me this. YES, I AM JOKING.

The initial URL that I linked here, though, is really full of TERRIFIC suggestions of things Not To Do when you’re photographing an avatar. Or when you’re an avatar being photographed. Or when you’re designing poses.  I cannot stress strongly enough how useful the tips are gonna be to anyone doing portraiture or modeling in SL.

And that’s what’s new today!

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