Tuesday, April 26, 2005

Getting a Classy Portrait…even if you are an Amateur

Amateur photography is one of the most wonderful venues for expression in the world. Sometimes the more amateur the photographer, the more real to life the photo may be. If you are a family member of the photo’s subject, then it may lend it a more personal air as well. However, amateur photographers can become discouraged with their technique, equipment, and the products they produce. I would like to lay out a few easy techniques that will help to make for a more energized look to your work.

Portraiture 101-

1. Placement-
Working with a ‘live’ subject can sometimes be one of the most challenging moments in photography, and yet one of the most rewarding.
If you know your subject well, you can place them in a situation that is conducive to their personality. (i.e.- If you have a prissy girl, don’t put her in the barn for her portrait.).

2. Framing-
a. Carefully place your subject within your frame; don’t always center the person, try different places within your frame.
b. The Rule of Thirds: Split your photo into thirds with 2 vertical lines. Now take 2 more imaginary lines and divide your photo into thirds again but this time horizontally. Your lines should meet in 4 places. These 4 places are key points to place your main subject, or strong point within your frame. See diagram below.

Example #1- Rule of Thirds

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