Martine Pinnel is from a small town in Luxembourg, but she followed her dreams to San Francisco at the age of 19. She is a rising star in a competitive industry, with more publications picking up her work all the time. I was lucky enough to ask her a few questions about beauty, modeling, and tips on making regular girls look extra-hot in photos…
Q: What is your favorite type of shoot to do? What sets your great models apart?
A: I definitely enjoy doing fashion editorials the most. When I can execute my own idea, have the perfect team working with me on this vision, come up with a storyline, find the perfect location, the right models, the right wardrobe and when I can see it all come together perfectly. I really enjoy shooting outdoors, in unique locations, that tell a story.
As for the models, I really like when they have very unique features, a beauty that cannot be found everywhere. I prefer their personalities to stand out and they know how to not only take a pretty picture, but they know how to tell a story and make the shoot their own.
Not every model fits every concept I have. I choose the models depending on what shoot I’m doing and if they turn out to be exactly who I’ve been looking for, they can take a photo to a whole other level.
Q: Any tips for girls having their photo taken casually? Poses and clothing that photograph well? Lighting to steer away from?
A: Lifting up your chin is probably my number one tip. It stretches the neck, avoids unflattering chins, and weird/harsh lighting that can create deep shadows on the face, especially the eyes. Eyes are beautiful, so everyone should make sure to show them and not squint too much.
There’s a few tips for posture everyone can follow as well. Standing up straight is always a big plus, as it makes the body always seem longer. Don’t take the photo from above, as it makes your body look shorter. And turning your body ¾ can make it look more flattering as well.
But the most important thing to remember is, to try to feel comfortable in front of the camera!
Q: Any further last-minute beauty tips that you use on a shoot? What do you look for in a perfect portrait shot?
A: I think the only beauty tip I have on shoots right now is: Less is more. Lately I’ve been concentrating on showing the model’s natural beauty, without cakey make-up or overdone brows and lips. Clean skin is always a must and natural beauty is wonderful.
In a perfect portrait shot as far as beauty goes, I once again look for a unique face, angelic beauty, clean skin, an interesting expression on the model’s face, her personality and an interesting look in her eyes.
Photography wise, I make choices of lighting, the lens I use, the depth of field I choose, the angle I shoot the portrait from and the directions I give the model.
So there you have it. Be yourself, even when having your picture taken, and stand up straight like your mother taught you. To see more of Martine’s photography, check out her website.
What do you do to look your best in photos? Have you used any of Martine’s tips? (Isn’t her work gorgeous?) Share your thoughts in the comments!