Ever opened Instagram and wondered how your favorite plus-size influencers captured such amazing photos? The people behind—and in front of—some of the best photos in our community joined us on day 3 of theCURVYcon to tell us all their secrets. Thanks to a panel led by Dale Noel, the founder of True Model Management, you can learn the tricks of the trade for lighting, posing, doing your makeup, and crafting the perfect Instagram post.

If it’s a rainy day or a cloudy day, don’t get upset—that’s actually the best light.


Editorial and portrait photographer Trevon James‘ tips for finding your light:

1. Natural light is best

You might think that a sunny day is the best time to take a photo, but you’d be surprised. According to Trevon, rainy or cloudy days actually give the best light because it diffuses the light source. If you’re going outside to shoot and the sun is shining bright, just find a shaded area to diffuse the light.

2. Face the light

When taking a photo, you should always face the light source, but avoid direct sunlight. Standing by a window is a great way to achieve this. Sheer curtains will soften the light a bit, so take full advantage of your window dressing!

4. Soften the light indoors

If shooting in a studio or indoors, use a large umbrella to soften the light. A softer light means fewer shadows and hard lines.

It’s all about fluid movements. I like to call modeling, basically, a dance.


Plus-size model and fashion expert Maxey Greene‘s tips for striking the perfect pose:

1. Pretend you’re dancing

The days of hand-on-hip posing are over. Now, it’s all about fluid movements. Keep moving the whole time—as if you’re dancing with the photographer. A flowy, constant movement will feature your outfit best and keep your photo active.

2. Show off your shape

Keeping your arms along the sides of your body won’t showcase the curves of your body. Separate your arms by either slightly bending them or letting them float out to the side. That way, the pose is more natural—and you’re leaving room to put your gorgeous body on display.

The end result is always that you’re beautiful, and that will translate far beyond makeup or expression.

Makeup & Expressions

Celebrity makeup artist and makeup blogger Tatiana Ward‘s tips for feeling your most beautiful:

1. Go natural

You want people to think you look beautiful—not that your makeup looks beautiful. Keep your makeup simple and highlight your favorite features. Never let your makeup have more than two focal points. Allow the real you to be seen! Always make sure you set your foundation with a translucent powder to make sure everything stays in place.

2. Practice in front of the mirror

Experiment with your expression and do what feels right for you. If you don’t like smiling, don’t smile—but keep trying things out until you find what you love. Start with the classic “smize” and go from there!

It gets very exhausting trying to be like someone else. So don’t do it.

Wardrobe & Accessories

Fashion, lifestyle, and beauty blogger Kelly Augustine‘s tips for picking the right look:

1. Dress to your personality

Wear what feels right for your personality—it’s all about being yourself.

2. Switch things up

Try new things! Let new seasons bring new styles to try.

3. Don’t worry about having endless options

Great photos doesn’t have to mean spending lots of money on new clothes. Just wear what makes you feel great, because that’s going to resonate even if you’re not feeling great.

People are going to love it no matter what. And if you don’t, unfollow me. Please.


BuzzFeed video producer Jazzmyne Robbins‘ tips for killing the Instagram game:

1. Lean into your surroundings

If the lighting is too bright and your photos are overexposed, use that to inform how you approach the photos. Have fun with it!

2. Share your vulnerability

If you feel off your game when taking a photo, don’t be afraid to let that be part of your caption. Someone out there will relate to your insecurities and your struggles.

3. Be 100% you

You don’t need to be perfect—no one’s asking for you to be. You just have to be true to yourself.

Use these tips when you’re taking your next #MyDiaStyle photo and tell us
which one’s your favorite!