A great way to improve your self portraits, whether you’re a beginner or a pro, is to study other self portraits and practice recreating them. This will not only give you insight into facial expressions and how to pose, but it will also give you ideas for how to light your shot and how you can get creative with your self portrait edits in Photoshop. Looking through the portrait portfolios of photographers that inspire you is a great place to start.
One of the challenges of family portraits is getting everyone to look at ease at the same time. If one group member looks uncomfortable or awkward, it can ruin an otherwise good photo. A great way to help your subjects feel relaxed is to shoot in a setting that is familiar to them. In the case of family portrait photography, shooting at their home, or at a local location such as a park that they all enjoy, can help you capture images they’ll all be sure to love.
Acing your lighting setup is key to taking great portraits. A studio portrait photography tip you can start using right away is to avoid using on-camera flash. Illuminating your subject with a bright light directly from the front can really flatten their features, and remove any interesting dimensions you could otherwise capture. Instead, use an off-camera flash setup and light them from angle. You can play around with the position for the most flattering shot.
You don’t need a breathtaking location or expensive studio to start taking portfolio-worthy portraits. Getting creative with your portrait background is a great way to make your images stand out. You can take a DIY approach with materials you may already have, like bedsheets and fabric. You can also buy backdrops online in just about any color or print you can think of. These typically come in reusable rolls, so you can repurpose them for future shoots.
Camera phones have reached new levels of quality in recent years with built-in features that recreate the look of higher-quality DSLR cameras. Check if your phone has a portrait mode that enables you to blur the background of your portraits if you want them to look like they were shot on an expensive camera. If you’re using a phone tripod, place it slightly below your eye level for a flattering portrait.