Strategies for Portrait Photography
Photography is one of the most popular hobbies and professions in the world. There is nothing like capturing fragments of reality and preserving it on film. There are many kinds of photography, but one of the most in-demand is portrait photography.
A good portrait is described as a picture with a quality image that captures both the physical features and character of the subject. Taking good portraits is very challenging because a photographer needs a subject with an upbeat personality that also reflects sensitivity and liveliness.
There are lots of factors that photography enthusiasts need to know in capturing the perfect portrait.
1. Revelation of the subject’s character
For a portrait to be considered good, it must capture at least one element that shows the features and traits of the subject as well as one that captures his or her individuality. The image must reveal an important part of the subject’s character that can be identifiable by those who know them. Therefore, it is quite challenging for a portrait to show the character of his subject if they have only met for the first time.
2. The right moment to take pictures
Definitely, the photo shoot should start when the subject is comfortable and at ease with his or her appearance and surroundings. Never shoot if the subject is tense or uneasy, because it will reflect in the pictures. There is no rule that says a conversation should stop when shooting starts, it can still continue especially if it makes the subject open up more to the photographer.
Remember that the subject does not need to smile to make the portrait look good. Oftentimes, a thoughtful or a serious expression is preferred since it reveals more of the subject’s character.
3. Preparedness of the photographer
This is important since it is the photographer who takes control of a photo session. The subject must feel that the person behind the camera knows what he’s doing and is experienced enough to tell the subject how to pose. The photographer himself must be prepared and relaxed throughout the session.
4. Right kind of lighting
Probably the best light that can be used for capturing the personality of the subject is natural daylight. The variety of lighting choices brought about by outdoor conditions gives more creative leeway for the photographer. Having the subject sit near the window can also produce great effects. The only disadvantage of natural light is that it’s not always consistent. This is the reason all photographers must utilize artificial lighting. All photographers must have studio flashes. Also, the position of the photographer in relation to the subject can also be shifted in order to maximize the light available.
5. Appropriate background
Simply put, a bad background can destroy a picture. Always pay close attention on the scenery behind the subject when framing shots. There are many creative options that be used when shooting outdoors. The subject can be made to pose beside or in front of colorful flowers or leaves, the sea or the sky. To reduce the effect of a distracting background, a photographer can make use of long lenses or an expansive aperture. For indoors, one can use black or grey cloth for the background, then adding colored transparent plastics over the flashes to modify color.
6. Usage of costumes and props
Portraits usually are a rare photograph of a subject, and good costumes can make the portrait more interesting and valuable. You don’t always need to use a full costume, sometimes a hint of it will make wonders, such as hats or scarves. Props should be used very carefully, and should not distract from the main subject of the photograph. A prop should establish the natural pose and mood of the one being photographed.
The kind of framing can already create the image desired by the photographer. It is recommended that photos be cropped before shooting. The image should be checked a few seconds before clicking the shutter. Images that are not needed should be excluded from the shot.
Producing the perfect portrait may seem hard at first but these tips can help novices so that they can shoot better pictures.