Alley in Pisa, Italy

by Lars Kotthoff

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Questions relating to portraits: lens choice, lighting, posing, retouching, photographing groups, newborns.

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7
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3answers
554 views

What lenses can I mount on Canon that will give me a different, exotic look for portrait photography?

I was usually working with Canon lenses (the 85mm f/1.2, 8-15mm, 16-35mm), but recently, I've got myself the Zeiss 100mm f/2, and it blew me away. I never thought it possible, but it, while making ...
1
vote
1answer
198 views

Starting out professionally in families/kids/events photography in mostly natural setting vs studio

I am starting out and would appreciate advice on what lenses are ideal for families/kids/events in mostly natural settings with some indoor for events and such. The plan is to purchase a Canon 7D ...
5
votes
3answers
630 views

How would I setup a portrait of a boxer like these?

A friend of mine has asked me to do some promo shots for a boxer he knows. It's not usually my style, but I have been researching types of shots and wondered how to go about getting these types of ...
2
votes
1answer
456 views

How should a perfect skin tone look like?

Is there even such a thing as a perfect skin tone? People with different ethnicity have different skin colour plus lighting and background adds a layer of complexity. As a photographer, what should we ...
4
votes
2answers
1k views

How to analyse a photo correctly?

I want to analyse this photo. I want to know with which lens it was taken, under which light and how to achieve this 'strange' look. Does it have a name? Are there any filters used? Was it taken ...
4
votes
1answer
444 views

Is there technically such an entity as “faceless portraits”?

I recently participated in a "faceless portrait" challenge. Some of the photos looked like decapitations. Others were people with there faces covered with a cloth mask, or a hand in front of the face. ...
2
votes
2answers
359 views

Can the camera select wrong exposure just because of color?

I took two pictures of two different flowers with portrait setting. One came perfectly exposed with dark background, the other seems over exposed with brighter background. I tried it again and the ...
17
votes
3answers
4k views

How to photograph people with a prominent (wide, big) nose?

One of my friends wants me to take pictures of her but she is very self-conscious about her nose (which is relatively wide, Monty Python anyone?). She wants me to take pictures in such a way as to ...
4
votes
1answer
2k views

How do you create a washed out effect with deep blacks?

I have been wondering how to achieve a great portrait effect I have been seeing a little bit more lately. The portraits are usually washed out, but blacks are still deep (not dull), and there seems ...
8
votes
2answers
1k views

How do I photograph a wedding in the rain?

I've shot weddings before, but being in Minnesota they almost always have an indoor venue available due to the long cold winters that we have. I am coming up on a wedding that I will likely be ...
7
votes
1answer
776 views

How do I use a manual ring flash?

I have just purchased (impulse) a Viltrox JY-670 - Its a Hong Kong import - built well but its not TTL so its 100% manual ! yay fun ! What on earth do I do with the numbers on the back - already ...
5
votes
2answers
173 views

Portrait to Landscape - Common Extra Space Fillers?

I have a lot of portrait photos that I would like to make landscape. They're not high-res enough to just crop out a landscape section of the photo for my purposes. What are common techniques and ...
0
votes
0answers
67 views

Canon 7D vs. Nikon D7000 for portrait photography [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Which DSLR brand should I pick as a beginning photographer? I'm a newbie photographer. I plan on buying a DSLR. I'm torn between Canon 7D and Nikon D7000. Which one ...
3
votes
3answers
653 views

What is a good composition style for photographs like these?

In my photography classes and online resources, I have learned about photographing the subject with a space to breathe in the photograph. But there are several photos in which the head is facing bit ...
4
votes
3answers
3k views

What Nikon lens for both macro and portrait?

All three lenses are available at a local store near me: 85mm 1.8 at about 400USD 85mm 1.4 at about 1000USD 105mm 2.8 at about 1015 USD I plan on doing macro and portrait photography and have the ...
10
votes
2answers
1k views

How should I approach people to take their portrait?

I recently saw a photographer's project on-line, where he takes 1 portrait each day of a total stranger. The project along with countless hours of looking at Steve McCurry's work sparked some interest ...
6
votes
3answers
2k views

Advantages of a ring-flash in portrait and wedding photography

I've seen lots of people talk about and work with ring-flashes, or using ring-flash adapters for their speedlites. Some use them in single flash setups, both on-camera and off-camera, other use them ...
3
votes
5answers
892 views

What would be a better lens option for shooting portraits?

I am doing my first photo shoot of a birthday party for a friend. I wanted to know which lens would be the better option to use for this. I have a Canon 50mm f/1.8 prime lens as well as the standard ...
1
vote
1answer
331 views

Is compositing a viable technique for high key portrait type shots?

In the absence of off-camera speedlites and a suitable back-drop I'm wondering if using post processing based compositing would be a viable technique to achieve a high key (or indeed low key type) ...
5
votes
5answers
451 views

Do I need to invest in something beyond my Canon 550D to produce top-notch portrait photography?

I am currently working with a 550D, and seriously debating whether to invest and buy a (semi) professional camera instead. I focus mainly on portrait photography and for this reason purchased the ...
6
votes
1answer
731 views

How do I reverse engineer a portrait photo?

A part of the photography learning process is to look at pictures and try to reverse engineer them. I want to learn how to reverse engineer portrait images. Reverse engineering the light in portrait ...
14
votes
3answers
638 views

Use a shot list or not?

When planning a portrait shoot, should I use a shot list (a preplanned list of shots) or focus on letting creativity take over rather than planned shots? A hybrid approach? What do most pros use?
5
votes
1answer
319 views

Is there a correct way to communicate with photography subjects e.g. models?

It may seem like this question has an obvious answer, but it’s something I do find quite difficult - I am very out spoken and confident but sometimes struggle with the following. Should I just tell ...
7
votes
1answer
1k views

How does one create the Dragan Effect?

I am interesting in achieving results like Andrzej Dragan's portraits. I have been through lots of tutorials, but none of them actually provide good enough results. What major steps should I follow in ...
0
votes
5answers
2k views

Good all-round lens for Canon XS/1000D? Is 24-105mm F4.0 IS USM a good upgrade?

I've been using my 1000D for 2 years now with the kit 18-55mm lens and for about a year now I've got it a bigger brother, a 55-250mm F4.0 IS lens, with the latter being on my body most of the time. ...
5
votes
3answers
338 views

What are the best tips for photographing children?

I have two children (ages 2-4) who are just getting old enough to know when to make the worst possible face or simply run away when I bring out the camera. Does anyone have any tips on how to get ...
4
votes
1answer
255 views

How do I formulate an estimate for photographing a private school's 180+ K-5th graders and their 30+ faculty and staff?

I have been invited to submit a proposal/estimate for school portraits including 180 or so young children and 30 or so adult faculty and staff. I do not know if prints will be involved, but would ...
4
votes
2answers
221 views

Is having a lens with vignetting a real world negative for portrait lenses?

After reading this answer for another post: I don't mind the vignetting as it actually improves the look of portraits however if you're doing astrophotography what's the point in a lens that's ...
11
votes
4answers
1k views

How to avoid tired eyes in a portrait?

I noticed some portraits I took had heavy shadows under eyes: It turned out the model had experienced some sleep deprivation, though the eyes didn't look that bad in real life. I suspect lighting ...
4
votes
6answers
512 views

When do you center your subject in environmental portraits?

When I shoot environmental portraits, I usually place my subject off center. However, I've seen instances where the photographer has intentionally centered their subject. Here is an example: ...
0
votes
3answers
1k views

Should I choose the AF Nikkor 50mm f/1.4D or AF-S DX 35mm f/1.8G?

I have D5000 DX body and planning to buy a fast lens. I'm stuck on choosing between "AF NIKKOR 50mm f/1.4D" and "AF-S DX NIKKOR 35mm f/1.8G". I was quite leaning towards 50mm f/1.4D, as I had plans ...
6
votes
3answers
2k views

How can I accurately focus manually on an APS-C DSLR?

My favorite portrait lens is the Nikon 50mm 1.4G. I love the light and what it is capable of. My problem with it is that on my D90 the AF is sometimes horribly slow, and in many cases (mainly low ...
5
votes
3answers
741 views

What makes a job interview photo great?

I am going to take job interview photos next week. However I don't know the next best thing about photography. I don't want to go to the shooting unprepared though. So I hope you guys can enlighten me ...
5
votes
3answers
377 views

How to find models for portraiture?

So far, portraiture has not been my main area of interest, but I do find many portraits fascinating and would like to develop myself further. Across time, I've gathered various theoretical knowledge ...
1
vote
2answers
2k views

How do I light a full length portrait?

I've built a basic home studio that includes a gray paper backdrop, 3 speedlights, 2 light stands with umbrellas, a tripod (to use for self shots or as an extra light stand if in a pinch), and some ...
3
votes
1answer
651 views

Broad and short lighting: is one more flattering for female portraits? for male?

This question explains broad and short lighting. Could those with portrait experience confirm (or refute) something I've read, which is short lighting tends to be more flattering to females ...
2
votes
7answers
8k views

How can I best shoot portraits with only two lights?

Assuming a two light setup, what would the best use of the two lights? Edit: after getting no response to what I guess was an over-ambitious question, I've researched this and have come up with a ...
3
votes
2answers
689 views

Soft boxes vs umbrellas, pros and cons

I won't ask which is better, as that is highly subjective. I know that reflective umbrellas can spill more light in close quarters, and are more easily caught by a gust of wind, but are cheap and ...
3
votes
4answers
1k views

How can I get good results from a one-light portrait setup?

Is there an optimum one light setup in terms of lighting the subject, providing fill (i.e through reflectors) and possibly lighting the background as well? If you are armed with only one light, how ...
11
votes
4answers
4k views

Is there a “bible” for portrait photography like “Light, Science and Magic” is for lighting?

Can anyone recommend a good book on portrait photography, covering gear, lighting setups, posing and so forth? More interested in the setup and shooting than post processing and retouching. Would ...
9
votes
3answers
2k views

How to avoid double chin and glossy skin in portraits?

Two of the most disturbing things I struggle with when shooting portraits are double chin of the model and glossy skin reflecting my flash, even while using diffused light. I normally ask my model to ...
4
votes
1answer
1k views

How much distance between subject and backdrop?

When photographing a subject in front of a backdrop, how much distance should there be between the two? Just wondering if there is standard rule (I've heard some say at least 6ft) or if it's ...
7
votes
3answers
9k views

What is the definition of portrait photography?

Can we talk about a portrait photograph if, let's say, a grandmother and her 3-year-old grandchild are in the picture? Or, must it be only one person in the photograph?
7
votes
3answers
548 views

How to best take a group photo with very large differences on height?

My family will be together for the first tome together. We want to take pictures. My family has very tall (6'6") and short (5'2") adults, and 5 kids, ages 1-12. What can I do to make pleasing photos?
5
votes
3answers
3k views

Is a 50mm f/1.8 or a 55-200mm f/4.5-5.6 a better lens for portraits, and why?

I just recently bought "Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II" for a Canon rebel T3. This was about $100. I just came across "Canon EF 55-200mm f/4.5-5.6 II USM" which is only about $40 more right now. My wife ...
4
votes
4answers
1k views

Is it possible to add haze to a portrait shot?

Haze is found in many shots ranging from portraits, to vintage, to fashion... I have only seen expensive actions packages for Photoshop so far that offer the ability to do it in post, and everyone ...
-1
votes
2answers
169 views

Are there any other small cameras comparable to the Canon Powershot elph 310 HS?

My partner and I are looking for a small and light camera for her to carry everywhere. She needs it to take pictures of high enough quality for publication. (She is also getting a larger camera, ...
8
votes
2answers
1k views

What are some typical angles to place the sun at in outdoor portraiture photography?

I know there are few common light positions for studio photography. For example, a key light positioned 45 degrees horizontal and slightly above the subject. I was wondering if there were any common ...
8
votes
4answers
2k views

Is a 50mm f/1.8 or 50mm f/1.4 a good lens for portraits in low light?

I only have one lens right now. It's the Canon 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6 IS kit lens. I think this lens is great when the lighting conditions are right but in low light I usually have to resort to flash. ...
4
votes
4answers
2k views

When would one choose a 50mm f/1.4 over 85mm f/1.8 (or vice versa) for portraits?

Say you are using a crop body, and you have both 50mm/1.4 USM and 85mm/1.8 USM lens in your bag. Now, you want to take a portrait where there is adequate light and space, and you have decided to take ...