This section is from the book "Complete Self-Instructing Library Of Practical Photography", by J. B. Schriever. Also available from Amazon: Complete Self-Instructing Library Of Practical Photography.
The Hair. With ladies, especially, there is another feature which needs particular attention, and that is the hair. It must lie quite smooth; i.e., there must be no protruding locks or stray hairs, which will attract the attention of the eye in any way. If you fail to see that the hair is properly arranged, it will be necessary for the retoucher either to etch out or pencil away the objectionable hair.
136. It should be your aim to do everything within your power to secure a portrait as nearly perfect as possible, thus saving the retouching of the negative. Strict attention given to each part of the work in lighting and posing, as well as in making the exposure, will well repay the efforts put forth.
Arms And Hands. Although for bust work the arms and hands are seldom, if ever, included within the picture space, it is essential that they be placed in a proper and natural position; otherwise the shoulders will not be properly squared, nor will they present a pleasing or natural appearance. The best position for the hands is to have them rest on the limbs, midway between the knees and the hips.
An effect of round shoulders will result if they are placed in the lap or on the knees, while if allowed to hang by the sides the shoulders would be thrown down too far and be apt to present a stooped appearance.
Overcoming Wrinkles In Men's Clothes. Sometimes a man's coat will hang badly, showing folds over the shoulder. To remove wrinkles, insert a wad of paper, or a handkerchief, underneath. In this way objectionable folds may be removed. It is usually advisable to pull the vest down in front, and also to pull down the coat in the back. In this way the apparent fit is improved and the white collar will show properly. If these precautions are not taken, there is danger of wrinkles and other objectionable features being unnoticed, which in the final print will greatly detract from the face. The tie should be straightened and if a scarf-pin, watch chain or charm be worn, they should not be placed in a set manner, but arranged so as to appear a trifle careless, and not stereotyped.
139. Where your subject is a lady, other items will require attention. For instance, there may be wrinkles or creases on the sleeves, as well as the waist, near the arm pit. To remove these, draw the sleeve down, and also draw the waist down at the sides. When arranging the drapery and removing objectionable wrinkles, proceed in an easy manner. Never make any mention of the fact to the subject, as they are very sensitive as to the fit of a garment. If the waist has a fancy front or a yoke, and the folds are not properly lapped, or have become wrinkled, gently draw down the waist in front. If gracefully done the pains taken will be appreciated by your subject, and the results secured will fully repay for the trouble.