A lot has already been written about portrait photography – and yet all the photos on Instagram look the same: 35mm backlit portrait with a red-haired girl and freckles. Blur until it does not work anymore. Collecting likes for sexy models – not for good photos. You should actually have your camera in hand and take pictures, so I’ll keep this short. Away from all the blabla and the typical recipes that you may find on youtube or on other photoblogs.
10 tips for more interesting portrait photos
01. Steer your look
YOU create imagery, so it’s your damn job to shape the picture and direct the gaze of the beholder. Blur helps. Help frame. Light helps. Knowing what you want to show helps.
02. Selective sharpness
What should be seen, what not. You select the focus points in your image – and if you get it with Aperture 12, then you are aware of everything sharp and work by other means. Otherwise, think about where you want to have the picture sharp, why you put it exactly there and not elsewhere. It does not just have to be the faces you focus on.
To a portrait belongs more than the face. Find the interesting details. This is your damn job – so make it! Get involved with your model. Develop the view for something special. Have fun.
04. focus on the eyes
When you take pictures of faces, focus on the eyes. Not on the ears, not on the nose, not on the back of the head! Meet the eyes or throw the picture away. As simple as that.
05. Smalltalk is the king
Photography is about emotions. Authentic life. There are enough soulless ones Stock Photos which are hated. You do not need to contribute any new photos if you do not want to. Better do something that people remember. And to awaken emotions, you have to talk to people. Tell stories. Know how to awaken emotions – and when to say something. Rumdödeln allowed – as long as it brings results.
06. read light
Understand your camera. Understand the light. Blur is not an image statement. With light you create moods. So learn to read and use light. It may improve your photos.
If nothing works, look for backlight and work with the good old paper cut. Looks great. It’s fun and the results are a nice change.
08. Do not smile
Your models do not have to smile. This is for grandma photos of grandchildren. Nobody has to smile at photos. Nobody has to look serious. It’s your job to figure out how to get the best side out of your model.
09. dominate photo recipes
Photo sessions become easier when you have an idea of what you are doing. Recipes help you to achieve predictable results in a short time.
Use what you have. Set limits in which you work. Have fun and go with the flow. Every shotlist, every scheduled event, is thrown out of your control by Murphy’s Law. Learn to live with it. Make the most of what you have and do not cry around. Find out what you want – and what you do not want and take good pictures. Creativity is a flame that burns in you. Whether this is a match, tealight, campfire or forest fire is up to you, your talent and your bite.