Portrait photography is unique compared to other types of photography. Portrait photography focuses solely on the person and not on the surrounding landscape. Capturing good portraits is difficult to do but it is a skill that you can improve on. Here are some tips for taking better portrait photos.
1. Play around with the perspective. Textbooks will tell you to take pictures at eye level, while that is not bad advice but don’t be afraid to do some experimenting. Challenge yourself to find a different way to take portraits.
2. Make eye contact. You can take portraits with the subject facing the camera or looking away into the distance. There is no right or wrong way play with both until you get the best shot.
3. Pay attention to the frame. The composition is an integral part of taking a good portrait, make sure that the objects in the photo are well framed.
4. Understand composition. Take the time to understand the rule of thirds when it comes to photography. Learn how to play with it when you are taking portrait photos. If you move the subject to one side or the other it can change the whole picture.
5. Play around with light. There are no rules when it comes to lighting other than don’t make the photos too light or too dark. Light and shadow can make dramatic differences in your picture.
6. Don’t pose. Instead of the typical poses have your model move around. You can get a far more natural shot and takes far better pictures.
7. Use props. Props can be absolutely anything and can make better pictures. Newborn photography makes great use of props and the pictures are stunning.
8. Change your focus. Here is an example of how that can work, you have a model with a shoulder tattoo, instead of focusing on their neck and shoulder make the tattoo part of the shot.
9. Use different themes. Change the backgrounds, don’t just rely on white backgrounds to take good portraits. Go outside, move into a different room and have your model move around.
10. Get creative. Photography is art and art is about letting your creativity run loose. There is no wrong way to do portraits, just experiment and see what kind of pictures you can take.
Take as many pictures as you can without worrying if they are good or bad, practice makes perfect after all.