I was looking for a specific video I saw a couple of weeks ago and still have not found. In my searching I came across this group of videos promoting a three day class video Bambi Cantrell put together: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a4y5vsurR9k&list=SP03A97D22CE1BBA53&index=1
She seems to charge a lot. She has beautiful photos in the bits we see. She is an artist, not an engineer. I think it would be worth paying attention to what she has to say about business, posing and art. When she starts talking about her 1D and 1.3X crop factor affecting lens length and depth of field, I think she has no concept of crop factor, but it does not matter because what you see is what you get, and when she looks through the viewfinder and sees light, she can get what her customers want. Watch the set, there is a lot of useful information.
I also came across a video by Doug Gordon, who seems to know what he is doing. It runs 15 minutes and he does not waste a second. It is all about posing bride and groom and neatly addresses Bambi’s “What do you do when your bride shows up an hour and forty-five minutes late for a two hour shoot. This guy could get it done! Pay attention to what he says about posing, camera tilt and watch the photos coming from the poses. Here is the link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ldrbq1LNf_A
Level, hands perfectly still. You can use viewfinder elements to help level. The 5D Mk III has a grid you can turn on. Other bodies may not. You can use the sides and top of the finder to align with objects in your view. Then recompose. Just like focus and recompose. If you were doing landscapes, I would tell you to use a tripod and hot shoe level. I’m not convinced that’s the way to go shooting models. You can always adjust level in post. ACR, Photoshop and Elements have different but effective ways of fixing tilt. Figure out how your editing tool does it. As far as hands perfectly still, VR/IS/OS has been a huge boon. Having a good grip helps a lot. There is still, and still enough, too. It depends on how big your final print will be. Joe McNally did a YouTube video called Da Grip. Check it out, it is useful, unless you already use that grip, then it is just entertaining.
People tend to look at the brightest part of a photo. They also look at the most in-focus part. They should usually be the same part. Usually the face.
One of the Bambi videos has an image by her with a lot of negative space, check the difference between her negative space and yours. Focal length, fast glass/big apertures and physical distances camera to subject and subject to background affect how out of focus foreground and background elements are. If you have f/1.2, you can blur almost anything. The challenge is that if you only have an inch of depth of field, your model can move ever so slightly after you focus and will now be out of focus. You may also move slightly while recomposing, and your model is now out of focus. Picking your focus point and using Servo tracking may help this, I have not tried it.
Everyone has something to teach you. Unfortunately, they may also tell you things that are incorrect. Sometimes them telling you something that is incorrect will later lead to your enlightenment. No one knows it all and there is a lot of misinformation and half truths being floated around as gospel. Your job is to evaluate what you are told/shown and decide which pieces of information will help you.