Portrait Photography Tips

10 tips to achieve a good portrait: 

  1. When shooting in natural light, the sun may prove harsher than helpful. Take advantage of white sheets, curtains, or other thin fabrics to diffuse this light, preventing the subject from being overexposed. 
  2. As opposed to other shots, portraits may require a longer lens. Converting to a telephoto allows the subject to “pop out”, creating a more desirable result. 
  3. Using natural light in photography refers to the subject facing the light, not using it as a background. For example, if a window is used as the background of the picture, the light will hide the overall subject. Instead, looking towards the light allows the photographer to get a clear shot of the expressions and feelings of the subject.
  4. Especially when shooting portraits, it is important to focus the picture on the subject. By widening the aperture, the background will blur, allowing the subject to stand out. 
  5. Although the process of shooting is important, the work of editing after the shot is taken is just as crucial. Using editing sources, like Photoshop, editors can create better composition and alter features to better the result. 
  6. Taking candid shots involves natural movement and action. As a photographer, allow the subject to engage in the activity, and trust that the raw pictures may come out nicely. Do not control the situation, as it may ruin the authentic mood of the photograph. 
  7. Do not only rely on one area of light at one certain time of day. Experiment with your subject and take photos from different angles, varying from those in the morning, day, evening, or night. 
  8. Like many interior photographers, take advantage of light within the home. Do not allow the artificial light to drown the brightness of natural light but do allow it to add warmth and direction to the picture. 
  9. If deciding to use a reflector, make sure to place it on the top of the subject, unlike placing it from below.  
  10. Don’t be scared or intimidated by natural light! Although it may seem risky at first, practice and experiment with different angles and places. 

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