Creating photography portraits can be a rewarding experience. It is however it is a skill like so many others in which practice makes – if not perfection, at least close to perfection. Learning from the experience of others is another key to the path to portrait perfection. This article offers several suggestions that photographers can follow to perfect their craft.
1. Before the shoot, give the clients a checklist they can follow to prepare for the shoot. Included items would be what kind of clothing and makeup to wear and what to do with glasses during the shoot.
2. Encourage your subjects to have good posture. This can be done by placing lightly touching your client’s lower back with two fingers with one hand while you touch them on the front of the shoulders with the other hand. Doing this while you say “good posture please” will almost always improve your client’s posture.
3. Be aware of the size of your subject’s heads and hands. These are usually the parts of the body which draw the most attention. If the hands are too close to the face with the full palm or back of the hand showing, it can overpower the face.
4. Often, when a photographer is photographing infants, the mother will want her portrait taken with the infant. Remember this mother just gave birth. Her mid section may not be the most flattering. Try and get more of the mother’s face in these shots.
5. When photographing newborns, allow more time than what is required to photograph an adult. Newborns eat, sleep and play when they want. They do not follow instructions well. As a result a photographer needs to have more patience (and time) than he does when photographing adults.
6. When photographing couples kissing ask them not to pucker up. While puckering up may look perfectly natural when seen in real time, it looks unnatural when frozen in time.
7. Ask your clients to bring props which will help personalize the shot. While it may be fun for the photographer to direct the shot as he sees fit, it is the client who is paying the bills. Make sure his/her personality is manifested in the results.
Portrait photography can be a rewarding. It can also be challenging. Following above suggestions will help ensure that there are more rewards than challenges.
Vanessa and Stephen shoot portrait, senior, engagement, pet, wedding, and family photography session. They shoot most often in the OC, San Diego County, Los Angeles County, and Riverside County.