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  • Writer's pictureKL Forslund

SP: To Shoot a Gentleman

“Now hold still Mr. Locke, while I line this shot up.”

Captain Locke fidgeted, “I’m not comfortable letting anybody take a shot at me”

“It’s just a photograph, sir.”

“Them, too”

The room lit up in a flare as the flash triggered, leaving the good captain with stars in his eyes. The photographer cranked on the handle of the contraption,, as he spoke. “I’ll need a few days to process this, not sure how it’ll turn out since you insisted on not standing ramrod straight like everybody else does.”

Making a Stand

I learned a few things at Comicpalooza this year. One topic revolved around posing for pictures, where cosplayer and model Masha taught a class on how to look better in pictures. Fine clothes and a hat tend to diminish my doofiness. When dressed as a steampunk, it’s very common to be asked to have my picture taken. Here’s everything I remember from that session, in hopes it helps you strike a more charming picture.

Take Up Space

The first step is to take a step, put one leg forward and put a little more weight on one of them. This is more natural, the way you’d already be standing while talking to somebody. From there, spread out. Make sure no part of your body is pressing on anything else. That includes arms held tight against your side, which would cause the biceps to flatten out, looking larger in a bad way. Even sitting in a chair causes the thighs to look thicker, so lift them up a slight bit.


A classic pose for men is to stand at an angle to the camera, which looks more dynamic. According to Masha, making S shapes or triangles. I’m not bendy to make S’s, but triangles, I can do. They start with the first stance I mentioned, taking that step created an A shape. From there, a hand on the hip creates another.

Watch the Hands

A recent discovery in the news is that actor Keanu Reeves never touches women in photos taken with him. It’s a good reminder that a gentleman strives to be aware of his actions and to act with consent. When somebody asks for a photo, ask what kind of pose they want to do with you. A fighting pose next to each other implies no contact. Going shoulder to should pretty much implis contact, if your not sure, giving a thumbs up or victory sign over their shoulder is a safe bet. If contact is to be made, a hand on the shoulder or upper back might do. Never put your hands anywhere that implies undue familiarity.

Start Posing

With these new skills, you photos will look more dynamic and memorable. Go forth and strike a pose for a good cause or too at your next steampunk event.

Weeks later, Captain Locke finds himself cornered by the enterprising photographer at headquarters.

“Mr. Locke, the photograph is completed, and I must say the image is so powerful. I think this new style of portraiture will sweep the Republic of Texas.”

The Captain looked at the portrait, as if in the act of commanding his men to move something heavy. “I guess. I’m not one for standing around, so I didn’t see the point in standing like I’m standing around.”

“Absolutely brilliant!”

“Uh huh. I reckon you can hang that at the Academy or something. If you will excuse me, I’m on my way out on a mission.”


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