Why portrait photography? It’s simple. One, because photography is a powerful medium and two, because taking photos of people means immortalizing a part of them, which time will eventually take.
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Tip No. 1: Find a subject that best conveys your message
The basic among the many portrait photography tips is to get someone as a subject who is both interesting and suitable to the message that one is trying to convey in the photograph to be taken. Some subjects are better off in happy shots while some project better when they pose for dramatic ones. One must be able to determine in what kind of photography the model is comfortable with as to avoid conflicts in both the professional and personal aspects.
Tip No. 2: Frame the Latter
When one has already chosen the perfect subject, make sure that when taking the picture, he should frame the latter. This is to further emphasize the focus on the subject himself. Moreover, when taking portrait photos, a photographer should not be confined to solid backgrounds – he can actually play with it, as long as the concentration of the photograph is still set on the subject. For instance, a portrait can be shown in an abstract background provided that the subject is big enough to grab the attention of the viewer. A cluttered background not only steals the attention from the main subject but it also confuses the viewer of what the photographer really wants to show, so if using such, one should be very cautious. Nevertheless, in portrait photograph, simple backgrounds are still preferred and the props or the instruments held or used by the subject are kept at a minimum level.
Tip No. 3: Take Close-up Shots
In taking portrait photos, mostly the subjects are shot in close-up. This is because in this kind of pictures, the emotions of the face are the ones that are usually conveyed by the photographer. Whether it is an emotion of happiness or one of sadness, the expressions are essential factors in portraits as they can make or break a photograph. Eye contact is also important in these cases because it will give a strong vibe of connection between the subject, the photographer who took the photo and the viewer of the photo. It is through an eye-contact that the soul of the photograph is usually based upon. Moreover, another technical skill in taking portraits is to use different lenses as this can immensely modify the output of the photograph. The image taken from a 50mm lens will always be different from that of a 24mm lens; the key here is to find which will be suitable to the desired photo that one wants to achieve.
Tip No. 4: Take Candid Shots
Although not considered one of the technical portrait photography tips, it is still encouraged to take candid shots when trying to achieve portrait photographs. A candid photo tells more interesting stories than the ones whose poses are planned. Spontaneous photographs show more life and fun that is why it is preferred to when taking pictures of children. However, a candid shot can still be achieved even if planned. The trick there is to direct the model to look away from the camera or instruct him to indulge into something else other than the photo shoot, that way it will seem that he was not aware of the camera and therefore, the shot was somehow candid.
Tip No. 5: Keep it Simple
The vital factor in taking portrait photographs is to keep it simple and let the photo focus on the person and let it express the message through the elements found in the subject. Keep it in the minimum level for the simpler the portrait photo, the better.