Does the Camera Really Make you Gain 10 Pounds? | Minnesota Portrait Photographer

I have heard it often times . . . the camera makes you gain 10 pounds.  You may ask is this true?  And I say it depends.  There are multiple components that go into how the camera makes you look.  The two factors that make the biggest difference in if the camera makes you "gain" or "lose" weight in my opinion are focal length and posing.

Focal Length

If you read last weeks post, I talked about my favorite lenses and touched a bit on focal length and the distortion it can cause.  Lets start with 35mm since it is the focal length on your iPhone.  35mm causes a certain level of distortion, which can be bad and it can be good.  The thing with distortion is you can use it to your advantage.  Here is how: put the things you want to look larger (such as your eyes/face) closer to the camera and the things you want to look smaller (think waist/hips) farther from the camera.  This will accentuate your positive features and minimize the ones you want to diminish. (be careful though, you can overdo it)

Focal lengths such as 85mm and higher cause compression rather than distortion, making things look much more in proportion.


I talked about posing a bit in the focal length section, but proper posing can make a huge difference in how you look in pictures.  Think about looking at yourself in the mirror and perfecting how you hold your body/smile/etc to make yourself look your best.  Proper posing is much like that, however depending on the focal length and the angle the photographer is coming from things will look different than they do to the naked eye.  I have spent considerable time studying how to pose women in photography and it is AMAZING the difference proper posing can make!

Great posing and proper use of focal length can help you look as good as you look in real life or better; however, poor posing and use of focal lengths very well could make you "gain" 10 pounds.

Interested in booking a portrait session?  Head on over to my contact page to learn more and get in touch!

~Amber Langerud