ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

How to Do Better Glamour Photography

Updated on July 15, 2020
LuisEGonzalez profile image

I enjoy photography and have been doing so professionally and independently for over 30 years.

Great example of glamour photography

Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported (CC BY-SA 3.0
Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported (CC BY-SA 3.0 | Source

More poses

April Hunter CC-BY-SA-3.0
April Hunter CC-BY-SA-3.0 | Source

What is Glamour?

Glamour photography is a relatively new photographic genre. The term was probably coined after the 1960s (Wikipedia) and before then glamour photography was probably better known as pinup photography.

Glamour photography is often confused with fashion photography, both genres are very similar but the latter focuses on the accessories, fashion rather than on the model. However it is very rare that a fashion photograph would not include a beautiful model to enhance the product like glamour photographers may use accessories to highlight the model.

Glamour shots may include semi nudity but the object is to give the appearance of sultriness and sexiness and they are often suggestive, but unlike pornography, they are not meant to arouse. Glamour is about the subject, and nothing else should matter as far as the image is concerned. If full nudity is present in the photographs, then it's not glamour but something else.

The emphasis in glamour is to enhance and showcase a subject's beauty, whether it be a beautiful face or a beautiful body or the rich texture of a product.

Glamour photography involves shooting a posed model in an orchestrated setting. The models are usually females, but males are rapidly growing in popularity. The majority of the markets for glamour photography are in the calendar industry, postcard, magazines, art galleries and book publishers.

Most glamour photographic projects are commercial in nature and in the majority of cases they are commissioned by cosmetic companies, therefore most of the shots involve a showing of the models' face, and the appearance imparted by the new product.

The fashion industry often uses glamour photography for their advertising campaigns, such as the very popular shots of models in underwear that are very commonly displayed on billboards.

Because glamour photography is very commercialized, it is not at all unusual to have the photos retouched or airbrushed to give the appearance of perfection, as if such things existed! Both color and black & white formats are good for glamour, although a growing number of professionals prefer the richness of texture that black & white film offers.

Before breaking into the world of glamour photography, be sure to have an extensive portfolio of your work and be ready to submit work if asked. Glamour photography is one of the best mediums for free lance work.

Ask magazine editors, and publishers for a want list and submission guidelines before you send them anything. For ideas browse through current issues of fashion and glamour publications to more or less get an idea of current trends. It is acceptable to copy trends, and possess but to distinguish yourself you must add your unique view and artistic touch.

Glamour photography is an ever changing and growing field which is constantly looking for fresh and innovative images and can be a very lucrative market.

Glamour photography is best done in the studio with careful attention to detail and lighting conditions to include the use of a professional makeup artist. But nature shots can bring a perspective which cannot be duplicated in the studio. Shots against a sandy beach, lush greenery, a beautiful river not only make the image more stimulating but adds intrigue to the shot as well as romanticism.

Use lighting that brings out texture and creates distinct yet subtle shadows. If working with a model, be sure to allow your model to relax and feel comfortable. Use engaging conversation to facilitate the process. Use poses that do not place the model in awkward positions or are hard to maintain.

The majority of glamour photos are done in the vertical format to include neck, shoulders and torso. Horizontal shots can distract the viewer unless they are closely cropped. Although makeup is almost always used, it must be done so as to make the model appear as natural as possible. Diffused light is required so as not to add strong shadows to the shot but rather add a softer illumination effect.

Backgrounds must be thoughtfully chosen, they must not distract from the subject but rather add to the overall image. Use muted colors as clashing colors and busy backgrounds guide the eye away from the subject. Softening the shot through the use of softening filters, also adds an air of romanticism.


Typical work before the shoot

CC0 License
CC0 License | Source

Glamour is not only reserved for models, products can also be involved, remember the photo of a tall glass of soda with water droplets slowly sliding down the side of the glass?

Made you want to run and grab one. That's an example of product glamour photography.

Weddings provide a perfect venue for glamour shots.

The photographer must be creative and besides the expected shots of the bride in her wedding gown, a series of unusual shots should be included that enhance everything that is beautiful about the bride.

The dress, the preparations, the bride in her lingerie, in front of her mirror while applying makeup, her smile, her eyes etc.

Pre and post church ceremony photos should also be added.

Creativity, an artistic view and persistence are monumental in the world of glamour photography, but for those that persist, a rich and lucrative market awaits.

Want to to learn more with tips, ideas and projects?

Beautiful "soft" sample

(CC BY 2.0
(CC BY 2.0 | Source

© 2011 Luis E Gonzalez


This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

Show Details
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)