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

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27
votes
4answers
1k views

Tips for photographing a wedding

I guess this comes up for most of us that are known by friends as "the photographer"... I've been asked to be the official photographer at a wedding. I think I have the equipment sorted. I have my ...
7
votes
1answer
686 views

Portrait photography of children (Christmas)

I floated an offer to my family to photograph my neices and nephews for Christmas. Now, we're doing this with plenty of time for them to get professional work done if mine don't really come out great, ...
6
votes
1answer
3k views

What is a loop lighting pattern?

I've seen several references to a loop lighting pattern, often in the context of portraiture lighting. What is meant by the term?
20
votes
6answers
970 views

How do I manage good photos of babies and kids?

Apart from the strain they create by not sitting in one place while in photo shoot, kids do make nice subjects for pictures. I have been trying various scenes, props, etc., to get the best out of my ...
18
votes
5answers
2k views

Is it worth it to have the 50mm f/1.8 Canon lens?

Is it really useful to have a fast prime lens for portrait photography, considering a low budget? If it is, what about the Canon EF 50mm F1.8 II? I have an entry level 18-55mm lens and a Canon 20D. ...
12
votes
5answers
1k views

What is the best techinque to smooth skin?

I am toning a senior portrait right now and am wondering what the best skin smoothing technique is. Think glamor. I know how to take care of blemishes, but I'm looking to enhance that silky skin look. ...
10
votes
4answers
8k views

How do I get rid of shiny skin with Lightroom?

For photos taken with my Point & Shoot camera, the flash often leave people in the photo with a 'shiny skin' effect. Other than not using the flash (or at least moving the flash off the ...
25
votes
4answers
2k views

What portrait posing rules do you recommend for studio photography?

What portrait posing rules could you recommend for studio photography? How to pose (and not to) the head, body, hands, wrists, waist, hips, legs? In what categories can the models can be divided ...
7
votes
2answers
2k views

Canon 5D Mark II vs NIkon D3x for studio/wedding work?

I do mostly portrait work, in a photo studio or for weddings, and need to know which camera will best serve my needs. I'm also interested in learning which lens will best support portrait photography. ...
20
votes
4answers
4k views

Tips for taking headshot self-portraits?

I need to do some headshots of myself for a gig I have coming up. My initial thought was to use a plain light background (as you see in many studio shots), but I've had some advice to use a dark ...
18
votes
7answers
5k views

What is a great portrait lens for Nikon (under $1000)?

I am currently shooting with a Nikon D90 and use the kit 18-105 lens and a 50mm f/1.8. Mostly I shoot as a hobby but lately I've been asked to do some family and engagement shoots. The 50mm is ...
19
votes
7answers
20k views

How much should an amateur charge for a portrait session?

I am fairly new to photography and have done a few high-school senior sessions of friends here and there. I have been getting more and more requests to photograph families, seniors, etc. and am ...
10
votes
6answers
4k views

What is a good Canon lens to take portraits?

I have a Canon T2I, and also a good prime lens (50mm / f1.8) but I cannot seem to take close up portraits like I see in magazines. Do I need a better lens?
11
votes
2answers
2k views

What lighting equipment do I need for a high contrast portrait photo?

I am an amateur photographer, and I have little to no experience in shooting studio photos. There is one subject in particular that interests me more than others in that area - high contrast portrait ...
11
votes
5answers
2k views

Recommended clothing colours for portraits?

What colour of clothing do you recommend your clients wear during a portrait photo session? I recently completed an urban photo shoot where the colour of my client's dress gave an odd cast to some of ...
9
votes
3answers
287 views

What do I need for a camera kit for a family photoshoot?

What are some key items to bring for a family (i.e., children, parents, pets) photoshoot?
26
votes
5answers
1k views

Is there a trick to shooting large group portraits without blinkers?

When shooting large group portraits, is there a trick to getting everyone to not blink (other than taking many shots)?
4
votes
3answers
1k views

Is shooting multiple exposures the best way to do night portraits with the E-PL1?

I recently had the experience where I was attempting to get a night portrait of someone but still maintain some of the background. For example, getting an image of someone on top of Rockefeller ...
9
votes
3answers
412 views

What are the most important issues to cover in a portrait photo contract?

I am planning on doing some photo sessions for friends and want to do it right. I want to have a contract, but I'm not sure what all I need to include. What are the most important issues to cover in ...
17
votes
12answers
7k views

What is the best Canon lens (around $500) for taking pictures of my newborn?

I have a Canon T2i, a 50mm f/1.8 and the kit lens (18-55mm). I'm considering buying a new lens for more flexibility with taking pictures of my upcoming newborn. I LOVE the 50mm/1.8 lens, but on the ...
56
votes
10answers
4k views

How can I get my portrait subjects to look natural and drop the cheesy smile?

I am surprised by how many people automatically put on a cheesy smile when I point a camera in their direction. Please share any tips / techniques / links that might help me get better, more ...
33
votes
10answers
9k views

Which focal-length lens is usually used for portrait photography, and why?

What focal length or range of focal lengths are usually used for portraits? What is used by professionals? Why would one select a certain focal length? What are the advantages and disadvantages of ...
17
votes
5answers
5k views

What equipment is required for a home studio?

I'd like to convert a room downstairs into a home studio to do mostly portrait/fashion/pet photography. I have a few strobes, softboxes, and stands, but that's it. What are the bare basics needed to ...
15
votes
3answers
1k views

How do I achieve smooth light falloff in portraits?

I'm having trouble getting a nice, smooth light falloff when shooting portraits. If you look at the left side of David Hobby's beautiful portrait, thats the effect I am trying to achieve. I have ...
14
votes
1answer
947 views

How do I create a (good) Hair Light?

My attempts at creating a hair light have been less than successful; I can get a hint of highlight but nothing like I see in the pro shots. What are the things that I should be adjusting in terms of ...