Portrait Pose Of A Smiling Redhead


This lady was staffing the gift shop at the Harvard Art Museums. She was friendly, knowledgeable and had the greatest red hair. It was so striking I thought it might have been “enhanced” but from her skin color I didn’t think so. Anyway I asked her to pose for a quick picture and she was happy to oblige.

It was only after we had left and were having lunch in Cambridge that I realized I should have asked her not to smile.

Why no smile you ask? Here’s the reason. A smile is pretty much a set pose. It’s reflexive and easy to do. If one is asked not to smile for a photograph, the goto pose disappears and the sitter has to fall back on something that they haven’t practiced. The results can often be much more interesting.

6 thoughts on “Portrait Pose Of A Smiling Redhead

  1. faransilverton

    I looked at the photo before I read your post and thought what a beautiful smile she had. I wonder what sort of expression you would’ve captured if she hadn’t been smiling?

    1. JohnAmes

      You know I’m not sure. She did indeed have a great smile. I just would liked to have seen the unsmiling version of herself as well.

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