Boys will be boys right? Who needs to have a theme or direction when managing a senior picture photoshoot for a boy right? Wrong. There are plenty of cool senior picture ideas for guys that they can incorporate into their graduation memorabilia. Of course, there are typical wardrobes such as: the football jersey, letterman’s jacket, a tuxedo, etc.. But I’m talking more about the entire theme of your session. It’s important for me to get to know my clients before the day of their photoshoot. This allows me to gauge their expectations as well as what creative ideas may work for them as individuals. So let’s get into my most favorite senior picture ideas for guys already.
Danielle’s Top 5 Senior Picture Ideas for Guys:
How do you want to be remembered after your senior year? What do you want to be remembered for? Most importantly, what do you want to be remembered by? You can encompass minimal information about someone based on their posture and outfit, but I like capturing my client’s auras – so the viewer knows exactly the type of person they’re admiring in a photo. These photo ideas will aid you in defining yourself through imagery.
1. The Tilted Walk
One of the most impressive photographs for young men is the “walk away” or “walking towards” shots. By slightly tilting the camera lens, you’re able to tilt the perspective of the photograph. A nonchalant walk with a casual walk towards the camera tends to make the most impact. While some prefer to look away as if their mind is elsewhere, I prefer eyes on the camera. Young men face a challenge when graduating high school as they now venture off into the world to make a name for themselves and the family. By gazing into determined eyes, one can see a curious little boy walking in the footsteps of a newly matured young man. This pose is a great way to encompass the transition to adulthood as a major milestone, graduation is soon to be behind them. Finding the perfect angle is difficult at times but a small tilt is great in this scenario.
When capturing the moment of walking away from the camera, try to have your subject wear detailed stitching and hemming. This adds sophisticated detail to a photo when someone’s back is turned to the camera. Although it’s important to have a creative backdrop and settings, you’ll want the focus to remain on the subject as he’s walking away. I’ve enjoyed having my seniors carry their graduation cap as if they’ve finally taken it off. This paints the picture that high school is behind them and they’re looking forward to their new walk of life – that normally consists of independency and an individualistic vision.
If he’s been a student athlete the past few years, consider having him dropping his shoulder pads, helmet, cleats, or tossing a basketball to the side. This also creates the picture that the former high schooler is leaving behind one passion and walking towards another. Place an admission office in front of them, or the building of their chosen career or field. Again, the atmosphere of the photograph has to make sense, but “the tilted walk” needs to be the focus.
Some of my best photographs have been taken with this strategy in mind – which is why I think it’s one of the top senior picture ideas for guys.
2. A Scholastic Collage
Achievements should always be considered when highlighting a specific time period of one’s life. There’s never a situation where bragging about your hard work is unacceptable. This strategy is created similar to the idea of a Pinterest board. Instead of posting your artwork, designs, awards, letterman patches, or report cards online, let’s highlight pieces of these achievements within your photo. There’s plenty of ways to go about formulating this approach.
Instead of surrounding yourself with these physical items, I photograph them individually. I take one setting or back drop and have my subjects hold a picture frame in different poses and positions. Since the camera is still on a stand, I am able to capture the same backdrop throughout. Once the session is complete, I combine every pose so one picture relays 5-6 different achievements within a picture frame. Another approach is a simple collage that high school students tend to make themselves anyways.
Instead of hundreds of pictures of you and your friends, combine all of your success stories. Place an “accomplished” looking photo of yourself in the center and you have a standard collage that highlights the last few years of your life. Most of my wedding clients love these types of collages.
Often times, you see senior portraits that include physical items that surround activities or hobbies of the student’s past. I think it’s important to highlight scholastics as high school is about education first and foremost. If you’re proud of the hard work you’ve put in then it needs to be showcased. Why wouldn’t you want to? When it comes to scholastic arts, be creative! If you excel with abstract artwork, then let’s develop an abstract theme that includes your drawings and paintings.
Don’t settle for setting them in the background – incorporate them in the photography so your personality is accurately relayed. Find areas in Phoenix that posses boxed areas or borders so my digital editing experience can be put to use. But by all means, dare to be different and advertise your scholastic creativity and achievements, please!
3. The Guys
What would high be without the group of guys you’ve been around for the last decade of your life. You’ve done everything under the sun with your “boys” and it’s important that you highlight your time together before you venture off on your own walkways. Look for old clothes or outfits you may have found “cool” at the time and try to fit into them. Nothing is more enjoyable then watching young men prance around in their middle school attire while reminiscing. Loosen up and capture natural photography. Sit around a picnic or patio table and discuss old memories. Play cards or one of your favorite games while simply enjoying the company of each other. Have a food fight – whatever generates the laughter!
Action shots, in my opinion, create the best photographs. Capturing someone in the middle of a sentence and other’s intrigue or laughter creates a sense of realness in the moment. A moment that will be remembered every time the photograph is looked at.
Don’t settle for a scripted photo shoot, relax and laugh naturally. Bring the boys for an afternoon of storytelling and future gazing while you’re the center of attention. At least your buddies won’t make fun of the corny senior photos you pass out at year’s end.
This is why a simple setting with “the guys” is one of the best senior picture ideas for guys in 2015. Before you move on, capture a few more memories to take with you.
4. A Man’s Future
You’re taking the next step in your life, How do you want to be portrayed? What do you want to accomplish over the next 4-5 years of your life? Are you pursuing a sports dream through a scholarship offer or do you plan on grinding out a career path? Encompass your future with a few snaps that measure your ambition in the next phase of your life. Give yourself something to strive for by envisioning yourself 5 years down the road. By referencing what you want to become, you’ll possess everlasting photographs of your goals after high school.
If you’re going to school to become a paramedic, fireman, doctor, TV host, producer, architect, designer, videographer, lawyer, or even teacher – capture your future with a few photographs that are geared towards you horizon. Hang them in your dorm room and hand them out to loved that will hold you accountable through the next step of your life. Impress your peers by relaying confidence in yourself to accomplish what you set out to do moving forward.
If you’ve received high recognition for your sports accolades throughout your high school career then consider action shots that showcase your ability to perform at the next level. Remember the glory days of high school that gave you an opportunity to improve your leadership and teamwork skills, or even further your education. If you plan on being an astronaut when you grow up while playing point guard in college, hold a globe in triple threat position. Wear a hard hat at the plate as you swing at a fastball, if you plan on majoring in construction management while furthering your education as a shortstop. Utilize props that surround the next few years of your life. Remind yourself of all the hard work you’ve put in and how much is still ahead of you, as a man.
5. A Boy’s Reflection
This is one of my favorite types of photography sessions as it reflects where you’ve came from. You’re able to get the entire family involved as an additional photograph is required. By looking into a mirror or reflective surface, you give a digital editor the opportunity to replace the reflection with another image. You can use a variety of settings for this theme, but the face of the subject is typically captured from behind or the side. I’ve always found it creative to implement an image of the subject from their childhood or as an infant. Gazing into a reflection of yourself during your younger years may be eerie, but it’s heart warming at the same time. Especially for parents.
If you decide to use the bathroom as a staging area, I suggest the subject leans on the sink as if they’re looking into a mirror with serious thought. It’s cool to add a toothbrush with toothpaste in their hand as if they were in the middle of doing something. Enhancing the photo afterwards can create an great image. This creates a moment that brings out the reality of the photograph. You can even sit at the edge of a pond with your fishing pole. Cast a reflection in the water as if you were looking down at the earlier years of your life journey.
Forget all of the selfies, have someone hold the camera for you. Even if you don’t incorporate another image, this can be a stunning photo. Don’t settle for headshots and boring white backdrops – engage yourself by having fun and surrounding yourself with things that bring you joy.
Step up your game with these senior picture ideas for guys
Be creative as this is the only chance you have at senior pictures. High school graduation only comes once, and relaying yourself at that moment or into your future can be a really cool way to remember the past. Arizona has some amazing scenery that allows me to produce some amazing portraits. But, taking pictures of graduates allows one to bring out the individuality every person has. It’s important that we always capture our smiles, styles, and everything worthwhile. Otherwise, it’s just a picture. 🙂
Subscribe to Danielle's Newsletter
Join our mailing list to receive the latest content, news, and photography tips!