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- How to Take Better Portraits Right Now
- You Can Learn From the Mistakes I've Made When Ordering Prints
When you take someone's portrait, you obviously want to create gorgeous portrait photography, not something that will make the model want to hide the photo in their closet.
That means learning how to take a portrait and minimizing mistakes that diminish the quality of your photos.
In this quick tutorial, I offer up some key portrait photography tips that will help you get more of the portraits you want and keep your errors to a minimum.
Editor's Tip: Have a favorite photo? Turn it into fine art! Start the process here.
Don't Go To Your Favorite Portrait Photography Location Right Off the Bat
It might sound strange, but if you automatically go to your favorite portrait location, you might not be doing your portraits any favors.
That's because sometimes it takes a while to get into your groove. The same can be said for your model, too.
This isn't to say that you should go to ugly or less than ideal locations for the first few sets of photos...
Just bear in mind that you'll likely need some time to work out the kinks as you go along.
The manner in which you work with the model is something that will change and get better with time, so by saving your best locations for last, you will likely improve the quality of those photos.
Don't Be Afraid to Experiment
Even though most of us shoot with digital cameras, I still find that a lot of people are terrified of making mistakes.
If this were still the film days, this line of thinking would be more understandable because we only had 24 frames per roll of film.
But with the size of memory cards these days, you can take thousands of photos without worrying about maxing out the card.
That means that you should cast aside your fears about making a mistake and experiment with tools and techniques that can have a positive effect on how your portraits look.
Some of the best portraits I've ever taken resulted from trying new things. The same will likely be the case for you!
Editor's Tip: Getting your images printed is much more involved than simply Googling "how to print my photos." For the best results, see your images as high-quality canvas prints.
Don't Spend the Entire Shoot Behind the Lens
Even if you're working with a professional model, they still need direction from you to help you fulfill your creative vision.
This is especially true of amateur models that might not understand how to pose, what to do with their hands, and so forth.
That means that you need to come out from behind your camera and actually interact with the people that you're photographing.
Even something as simple as "lift your chin" or "bring your fingers to your temple" can make all the difference in the world.
Throw a few compliments the model's way, too. Positive reinforcement will only help the model gain confidence, and that will show in the images you take.
Don't Go For Cheap Prints
I know that the saying, "you get what you pay for" wasn't coined to talk specifically about photography prints, but it's still a very appropriate term for this situation.
Why spend so much time working with a model, giving them direction, perfecting the light and composition, and so forth, if you're just going to ruin it by printing those images on sub-par paper with colors that aren't accurate.
It just doesn't make sense...
What does make sense, though, is getting high-quality canvas prints from CanvasHQ.
As I've said before, I've spent a lot of money on a lot of prints over the years, and the ones from CanvasHQ are hands-down the best of the bunch.
Consider this - not only are these guys dedicated to getting the colors spot-on, but they also use water-resistant and scuff-resistant inks.
Wonderful job of capturing our family memories and making them even better! Thank you for adding your professional touches. Well done and we are so pleased!!! - Lisa R., Goddard, KS
That means a better looking portrait that's highly durable so you can enjoy your investment over the long haul.
What's more, the canvas that they use is a poly-cotton blend, which is specifically designed for fine art reproductions. In other words, your prints will be artisan quality and archival grade right out of the box!
But don't think that because CanvasHQ uses the best materials that you'll have to spend an arm and a leg for your prints.
CanvasHQ offers competitive prices, that way you get the gorgeous portrait photography you want without the giant bill you don't want.
Fabulous quality, perfect price, fast processing and shipping times. I'm VERY impressed and will definitely order from CanvasHQ again! - Andrea W., South Windsor, CT
On top of all that, these guys are fantastically fast - I got my last order in just two days!
Superb quality. Excellent materials. Great prices. Fast delivery. CanvasHQ has it all!