advanced photography :: portraits

assignment : take a portrait of a family member or friend (full face, upper body, or full body) using 2 light sources

portrait : my smoking hot husband
portrait : my smoking hot husband

This assignment coincided with a Joy of Love assignment so I was able to kill two birds with one stone!  I took these photos using natural light coming through a window as well as a speed light on my camera.  I got the speed light for Christmas, and honestly, I’m still learning how to use it.

My preference on portrait taking is one, using natural light (preferably outdoors) and two, that it doesn’t look like a traditional portrait.  I love capturing the spontaneous laugh or the moment when they are truly being themselves.  This usually happens when they don’t know you have the camera.

I’m not really a studio portrait taking kind of girl.  The black sheet and fancy studio lights just don’t do it for me.  However, our instructor brought along his whole set-up and it was fun playing around with the remotes and lights and everything.  Just look at our scary lovely model…

portrait class

One of the reasons I don’t like taking studio portraits is the responsibility of the photographer to position the person.  Nothing looks natural to me (I’m the one who never buys the school portraits…I’d rather take an outside photo of my child.)  Some tips I learned in this class that are helpful for posing…an S pose is considered feminine and a C pose is considered masculine.

Also, for taking portraits inside, it can be really helpful to use a reflector to bounce light from a window and create catch lights in the subject’s eyes.  A reflector could simply be a white sheet or the fancy photography reflectors.

I’m off to another class tonight…landscapes!

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