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My family recently designated me to be the family photographer for this weekend's photo shoot ... We are shooting indoors in an office building. The main question I have for right now is posing my family. I have seventeen people in the shoot, and I'm currently trying to plan out the posing.

This is my plan for posing ... suggestions?

Basically, the top row is my grandpa and grandma standing (on a stool, maybe?)
The middle row has all the adults in pairs (couples) who are going to be kneeling (OR SHOULD THEY BE STANDING AS WELL?)
And the bottom row has all the kids (including me) either sitting (OR SHOULD THEY BE STANDING IN FRONT OF THE MIDDLE ROW?)

The link to the sketch is below:

Thank you for your time!

ANSWER: Depending on the age of the grandparents...they could be in their late forties to eighties.  If they are older they should be seated dead center with a row of chairs left and right of them maybe 3 on each side.  Mid-age behind and kids on the floor kneeling near the grandparents. Watch out for very tall or short people who will have to placed separately according to where they fit best.  Don't worry about keeping couples together unless they insist if their heights are vastly different.

Hope that helps.


---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Thanks for the quick reply! They are actually older, in their 70s-80s. If I do it like you're saying, won't I lose the "triangle" composition? Can I still incorporate it somehow?

I was hoping to arrange it so that I would have each "mini family" be together in some sort of cluster, then fit it all together.

Also, who would be in the chairs / what if we don't have chairs?


If you do it that way, I'd try to shoot it either in a nature setting or indoors.  You don't want it to feel open but rather intimate.  Try an arrangement in levels so it doesn't look static and keep it tight, you don't want it to look to separate, it's still a family.  You could always shoot each group separately and combine them in Photoshop.  Make sure there is lots of touching, hands on shoulders, holding hands, head on a get the picture.

Hope this helps.



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Mark Gluckman


I can answer questions about all social photography (wedding, corporate, b`nai mitzvah). All general questions about digital photography and, of course, film. Photojournalistic and travel photo questions can also be asked as that is another specialty of mine.


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McDonald's, Sprint, GE, Ford, NBC, IBM, Princess Cruises, NCL and I work the Jerry Lewis MDA Telethon every year.
I have worked for The New York Times, USA Today, AP and dozens of other international and national publications. I have shot hundreds of weddings, b'nai mitzvah and corporate social events.

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