A warm and aesthetic background, exuding peace; a flexible and inspirational yogi in the foreground, striking an impressive pose. What is not to like about a picture like this? Everything about such an aesthetic screams inspiration and can motivate anyone to gain amazing flexibility and finesse. So, it can be an amazing advertisement for a Yoga class, a perfect picture for Instagram, or just a spectacular portrait to adorn your space.
A Yoga photoshoot is an effective way to market your Yoga business or to inspire others with your skills and achievements. It can help you score important clients and jobs as a Yoga instructor.
However, what is the formula to get those perfect pictures? Which Yoga photoshoot ideas work best?
This article will help you to come up with great poses and pictures!
Why is it so difficult to plan a Yoga photoshoot?
What background works best? The glow of the sunrise, the magnificence of the waves, the grandeur of mountains, or the opulence of an architectural wonder?
How about we say all of them? Or maybe something else?
Which outfits? White flowy cottons or athleisure from a top sports brand?
You can do so many different things to create beautiful Yoga pictures that you are spoilt for choices. However, confusion can get overwhelming and it may be difficult to decide how you want your pictures to look.
Also, you will need to plan the other details based on the aesthetic you desire for the shoot.
While your photoshoot will require a fair bit of envisioning and planning, you don’t need a lot to accomplish it. If a professional photographer is unaffordable, a tripod or a friend with a good cell phone/camera can do wonders.
Steps to a successful Yoga photoshoot
Planning and executing your Yoga photoshoot will require the following steps irrespective of whether you choose a photographer or opt to do it yourself:
- Check pictures online for some inspiration: Only you know how you want the vibe of your Yoga photoshoot to be. Look for pictures online to understand what style you like. Create a mood board and think it through with respect to your Yoga style, preference, the intent of the shoot, etc. However, just take inspiration; do not try to replicate the pictures. Use the pictures you like as a guideline and create your unique pictures. You can tell your photographer to take inspiration from the lighting, setup and other details you like in the photos you see online.
- Know the reason behind the photoshoot: The intent of your photoshoot can determine a lot. Where do you wish to place your pictures? On brochures and flyers of your business? On social media? Or on posters to decorate the walls of your Yoga studio? Once you know the answer, it will be easier to ideate further and you will be in a better position to brief the photographer. For instance, if you wish to convert your pictures to posters, they will have to sync with the aesthetic of the space that you wish to put them in.
- Decide the location for the shoot: The location you choose to click your pictures at must fit the style of Yoga you practice. For instance, if your Yoga style is more meditative and calm, you can choose a place of worship or a subtly decorated studio. However, if you practice power or hot Yoga, a workout-style studio with an energetic vibe may be ideal. Similarly, a pregnancy Yoga photoshoot will work best if done in a garden with ample green cover, among flowers or with similarly soothing backgrounds.
Some points to consider while choosing the location for your Yoga photoshoot
- Choose a private or less crowded location over the ones with overwhelming crowds
- Find out the location reservation rules and timings
- Be mindful that some locations may have passersby looking at you with curiosity. Choose them only if you are comfortable or your discomfort will show in your pictures
- Recognize if there are striking spots to pose or balance at the location (rocks, ridges, etc.)
- Ground texture and whether it will be ideal for your practice
- Clothes: While most of us understand that clothes are among the most important aspects of a photo shoot, we still end up choosing the wrong apparel. Comfort is of primary importance, but the outfit must be chosen carefully based on the Yoga style and to contrast with the chosen background. For instance, power Yoga teachers can opt for Yoga tights and sports bras, whereas those with a more spiritual style can choose all cotton white apparel or harem pants. As important as it is for the apparel to reflect your Yoga style, it should also be a reflection of who you are. If you are comfortable with what you are wearing, your pictures will portray you as comfortable and approachable. You can also choose an offbeat or eclectic outfit like a dress, a sarong or a bikini for intriguing pictures. An important tip is to wear the outfit before the shoot and try the poses to ensure you are comfortable during the shoot.
- Decide and practice the poses: It is a misconception that complex poses will make for good pictures. It is a good idea to enlist poses that you think will look good and take some sample pictures to see which ones look good. Also, planning your poses will help you to choose the ones you enjoy most and you will be able to hold them for longer for the photographer to take multiple shots.
How to take the best Yoga photos
- Lighting: Lighting plays an important role in any photo shoot. A well-lit shooting area ensures proper contrast and clarity and the colors look as you want them to. Natural light is the best for some enticing photos. While you can achieve mesmerizing results indoors too, it may be a bit tricky to get the lighting right. If natural light is not an option, you can choose among a multitude of artificial lights that emulate natural lights. A professional photographer can use mirrors and other props to get the desired effect. Click here to read more about it.
- Backdrop: A beautiful backdrop can perfectly complement your Yoga finesse and do wonders for your shoot. It could just be a wall with a geometric design, a plain colored wall, or an elaborate backdrop. Yogis can relax well amidst nature and beautiful beaches and mountains make alluring backdrops for a Yoga photoshoot. Some other outdoor Yoga photoshoot ideas include gardens, lakes, and open fields. You can also experiment with different backgrounds and see where you feel the best. It could also be the plain spaces in your studio and that is ok. A happy yogi is the most photogenic one!
- Your mat: You may be in love with your mat the way it is but a dirty or tattered mat will spoil the aesthetic of your Yoga photoshoot. Apart from the space around, your mat should be squeaky clean, so the attention is on your pose and not on the dirt on the mat.
- Distance and camera angle: While a professional photographer understands angles and distances, this is a tricky aspect when you are DIYing your Yoga photoshoot with a tripod. Place your equipment at different heights and positions and take multiple pictures. You can later choose the ones that look most attractive.
- The technical details: If you are DIYing your photoshoot, a 16-35 mm wide-angle lens is ideal. Shutter values between 1/125 and 1/250 work well because the poses are static. Use a tripod if you wish to deviate from these values. Adjust the aperture based on what you wish to blur and what you wish to focus on. A lower aperture like f/22 will help to keep everything in focus.
Elegant Yoga photoshoot poses
Below are the Yoga poses that are top choices for any Yoga photoshoot
Child’s Pose: This is an immensely easy yet elegant pose for photoshoots. It is so basic that it symbolizes Yoga. Some impressive pictures of the pose can be shot from above. Photographers can also choose to click a low-angle shot from the front or side.
Lotus pose: This is one of the best Yoga poses to advertise meditative Yoga. It is the same pose as the one Gautam Buddha can be seen performing in his pictures. It depicts the beauty of a lotus flower and the poise of meditation. The highly symmetric pose is a popular choice for photoshoots because of its simplicity and charm.
Wild Thing: The Camatkarasana looks very beautiful from all camera angles. It is a fun and creative pose that is ideal for Yoga photoshoots.
Standing Backbend: The Anuvittasana is a great way to show your incredible balance and ample upper body strength. Since the pose is good for beginner Yoga practitioners and is symbolic of strength and flexibility, it looks great in Yoga photoshoots. Practitioners can take different pictures of them performing the standing backbend over time and show the progressive improvement in the arch.
Headstand pose with eagle legs: Here is a great pose that’d look spectacular on your social media handles, marketing messaging, and wall posters. It is also known as the salamba sirsasana pada garudasana and is an advanced pose that most newbies would love to build up to. This pose can be shot in even the simplest of studios, as its grandeur is enough to attract attention.
Eight Angle pose: If you wish to impress others with your strength and balance, the Astavakrasana is a good pose. You can look right into the camera for some beautiful shots in the pose.
Side Crane Pose: Equally impressive as the eight-angle pose, the parsva bakasana or the side crane pose can also help to create some amazing pictures. It helps to show off your upper body strength and can be shot from various angles to get a variety of beautiful clicks.
Cobra Pose: While advanced Yoga poses look gorgeous, beginner poses have a great aesthetic too. Especially if the photo shoot is meant to be marketing material for your Yoga class, they do a better job at attracting the novices. The cobra pose is one such pose that makes for an alluring Yoga photoshoot. It makes the practitioner look calm, content, and happy, and everyone would wish to embrace that. Isn’t it?
Extended Triangle Pose: Here is another Instagram-worthy pose that looks good from upper as well as lower camera angles. You can take pictures from multiple angles and compile them as a series.
Warrior 3 pose: The way yogis balance themselves is the most intriguing and impressive aspect of Yoga. The warrior 3 pose is among the Yoga poses that require considerable balance. It thus makes for a good pose for a Yoga photoshoot.
Apart from the above poses, the following are also bewitching and will take the appeal of your photoshoot notches higher.
- Pada Rajakapotasana or the King pigeon pose
- Natarajasana or the dancer pose
- Virabhadra or the Warrior 2 pose
- Parivrtta parsvakonasana or the revolved side angle pose
- Tuladandasana or the balancing stick pose
- Inverted Yoga poses and handstands
Yoga props for Yoga photoshoot
While flawlessly performing a Yoga pose is aesthetic enough, some Yoga props can add intrigue or edge to the pictures. Again, the props will also have to be based on your Yoga style or the type of clients you wish to attract. Mala beads are a good choice for spiritual yogis. Adding fitness equipment such as weights, resistance bands, etc. can help to convey that you are more focused on the workout aspect of Yoga. Yoga bolsters, blocks, straps and other convenience accessories can give a feeling that the class is beginner friendly.
Equipment required if you do your Yoga photoshoot yourself
If you decided to save on the photographer and do your own Yoga photoshoot, here are some things that you will need:
- A camera with a good lens. A DSLR works best to get high-definition images
- Lights if the photo shoot is indoor
- Attractive background for indoor shoots
- A mood board or catalog of poses that can offer inspiration
- A tripod to hold the camera
- A memory card for the camera
- Processing software to edit the images
What to do on the day of your Yoga photoshoot
Your photos must reflect your true inner self. A happy yet profound vibe is the secret to a good Yoga photoshoot. Make sure that you stay stress free on the day of the shoot. Do a thorough warm-up before the shoot, so you can do all the poses with ease. Your Yoga practice is very close to your heart. Let it show through the pictures. If you are camera shy, let the photographer know so they can give you time to cozy up. Remember, you do not need to be perfect, just happy and comfortable.
Post-processing of images from your Yoga photoshoot
If you hire a photographer, editing the images will be included as a part of the photography package. However, if you wish to do it yourself, you will have to download image editing software and play around with the features.
Other Yoga photoshoot ideas and tips
- Incorporating the sunset in your photoshoot can create some amazing photos
- Use different asana types for a versatile photoshoot
- Try shooting from a low perspective
- A wide-angle lens is ideal for Yoga photography
- You can use a shutter value of 1/250 to 1/125 if you are doing the photoshoot yourself
- Adjust the aperture based on how blurred you want the background to be
- Try various photo editing apps to experiment with the output
What is the ideal attire for a Yoga photoshoot?
Your Yoga style and the type of photo shoot will determine what you wear at the photoshoot. If you wish to focus on the pose and its correctness, well-fitting tights and a tee do the job well, whereas flowy dresses, harem pants, and cotton outfits work better for portrait shoots.
How to click pictures for a Yoga photoshoot?
You can either hire a professional photographer or use a ring light and tripod with a Bluetooth remote to click pictures yourself. A Yoga friend can also help you with photography and making the right poses for your Yoga photoshoot.
What poses should I do at a Yoga photoshoot?
The dancer pose, warrior 2 pose, and inverted poses are great for Yoga photoshoots.
How to get the best Yoga photos for Instagram?
Take help from a Yoga buddy to see your form and how you look in certain poses. Wear attractive Yoga attire and get your pictures clicked by a professional or set up your DIY photography setup.
The pictures from your Yoga photoshoot should be free-flowing and natural. While planning is essential, it shouldn’t make the shoot too scripted. Go with the flow and ensure that you do not do anything in the shoot that you wouldn’t while practicing regularly.
Be true to your practice and take gorgeous photos.