I walked into a firm and I was stunned beyond the usual. Mind you, I did not freak out because I sensed that hidden cameras
or probably a motion activated hidden camera
was watching me. No, it was this huge portrait photograph of the founder that stunned me. It took some level of composure not to stare. It was not the gigantic size that actually kept my attention though that was what caught my attention. It was the picture itself that kept me in awe so much that the receptionist observed it. Everything about the picture was dazzling and alive. It seemed like the man was live and his aura was just oozing. This is one thing about photography.
Photography is such a beautiful thing. Probably because it is a science and not an art. It gives room for expression as they are no laid out methods of doing this. Although there are basic rules for doing this, they are so mild that they probably allow you do as you wish. The main rule us getting it right not actually following some strict rule. Portrait pictures are very important and as useful as they are important. They tend to serve a lot of purposes. Official purpose like the one in my earlier example. They also serve commercial purposes as well produced portrait photographs can become envious pieces of art. If you are looking to producing a portrait photo, here are 6 amazing tips to make your portrait photography impeccable.
Do not shoot under direct sunlight
The principle of portrait photos is that your client or subject is the main component of your photo. Your subject is a human being and human beings react to harsh light by squinting their eyes. Unless the idea is to have your subject squint their eyes (which is hardly the case), you do not want that in your photo. In this effect, it is best to avoid sunlight or any other form of light that is harsh to your subject's eyes. It will be worse when your subject has to face the sun directly. Although the sun is a great source of light, it can make things go wrong when you do not use it effectively. Try to get a shade for your subject to pose under. If you have to shoot under the sun, ensure your subject is not facing the sun or your subject is putting on some form of shade (probably a hot or a pair of sunglasses).
Do not flash your light directly at your client
Sometimes a flashlight attached to your camera may not be the best. To understand the effect of a direct flash, stand in front of your mirror at night and take a picture of yourself. Ensure you point the camera at the mirror as you try to capture your reflection in the mirror. You will observe that the flashlight is more pronounced than your image in the picture. This is the same when you use a direct flash when taking a picture. The human eyes is reflective and will act like your mirror when you flash light directly at it. Instead of a direct light, use an indirect flash and shine you’re on your subject from another angle. If your only source of light is your direct flash, you can point it at the ceiling and use the light it reflects from the ceiling to illuminate your photo.
Choose a suitable surrounding
In a portrait photograph, the main focus is your subject and other things in the photograph should enhance your subject. Most people tend to remember the first half by focusing on their subject but ignore the other part of the sentence by focusing on the subject alone. If other factors like your environment is not good, it will not enhance your subject. When they do not enhance your subject, you will not produce a good photograph. From the theme of your photograph, you will be able to identify which location suits that photograph best. It is best to take pictures of your subject in their natural environment. For a corporate photograph, it is best to take a picture of your subject in his or her office.
Use a tripod and a remote trigger
Photography is very delicate and the slightest of changes may harm your photograph. If you want to use manual mode, it is best to shoot with a tripod stand and a remote trigger. This way you will avoid taking blurry photographs. Portrait photograph is not one where you take continuous shots or work with the spray technique. You wait till you get the right moment and capture it. In the case where you cannot or do not use a tripod stand, it is best to work with aperture mode instead of manual mode.
Help your client relax and focus on the camera
There is no way you will get a good picture when the subject of your photograph is not happy (unless that is the idea of the photograph). Since photography is an art, any scientific process is very easy to detect. There is no way your subject will fake a smile and it will go unnoticed. As a photographer working with human beings, you just have to be patient. Try to get them to relax and enjoy the photoshoot session. Say nice and funny things (probably a stale joke and admit it is a stale joke) so that they will laugh and smile genuinely. You should also encourage them to focus on the camera and look at it.
Be creative and not rigid
Knowing fully well that photography is an art then you should also know that photography is about expression. Do not always try to get the best photos. Instead, try to get the most interesting photos. Models are good when it comes to photography but nothing beats the natural. Nobody will portray the subject of a photograph better than someone who actually does it. Do not always stick to the norm. Go out and meet people in their natural places where they function. Capture a trader in the midst of the crowd but blur the crowd out so as to enhance her. This makes your photograph look genuine.
The final aspect of every photograph is the production of that photograph. If you put adequate effort while in the field, you will not have much digital work to do. Even Photoshop has its limit. So try to minimize the need for it by ensuring you get it right while shooting.