Although portrait photography was started as a means to preserve and document history, it has evolved over time to become one of the most popular genres in photography. The photos with blurred background add the magical touch that photography has been known for since its very beginning. In this article, we are going to cover 5 no-nonsense tips that you must know and master to ace your portrait photography game.
Your subject is as important as your shooting gear if not more. Many newbie photographers are so engrossed in learning new techniques and tricks that they often underestimate the importance of making their subject feel at ease.
To get the perfect shot, it is very important to engage your subject in conversations where you make them understand the motive behind the shoot. The better they understand your goal, the more they will be able to help you in getting good shots.
If a good camera is the heart of photography, lights are certainly the heartbeat. The lightning conditions can make or mar your pictures therefore doubly check for them in advance. Natural daylight is considered to be the best for portraits.
However, avoid shooting in direct sunlight since it is a strong source that can lead to shadow formation in the frame. You can still use bounced and reflected sunlight for bright shots. In case you are shooting at night, studio lights will be your saviour.
As discussed before, a blurred background makes the subject stand out , adding magic to your pictures. A shallow depth of field ensures that. It blurs the background and brings your subject in sharp focus.
You can achieve this by using the aperture-priority mode where the aperture can be adjusted according to the need.
On the aperture priority mode, you will have to choose a smaller f number or f stops. The smaller the f-number, the bigger the aperture, and the bigger the aperture, the more blurred your background will be. You can also use editing softwares to make changes to your photos easily.
Since most portrait photographs have a blurred background, photographers tend to underestimate the importance of a quiet background. To get a good shot it is very important to have a neutral uncluttered background.
A distracting background can steal the focus away from your main subject. However, this does not mean that you always have to choose a plain background. You can play around some fun backdrops so long as they don’t distract the viewers from the subject.
One of the simplest ways to add a fun element in your picture is to add depth to it. You can simply do that by adding layers in the photos. For instance, you can put a prop in front of the subject and blur it so that the focus remains on your subject.
Adding the prop will add a foreground layer in your snap which will make it very interesting. However, while adding depth to the picture, be careful about not cramming the picture with unnecessary elements or it will start to look messy.
Besides the above-mentioned tips, always remember that your photo should align with your unique style. You are free to experiment with the photos so long as the quality of the image is not at stake. In short, choose a good subject, make him or her comfortable and check the lights.
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