123

I can see three very clear aspects that all three photos share, so let's concentrate on those. Two can be done in camera, the third is a software process. I didn't have time to costume a collection of actors or find a nice medieval-style location... but I have a toy bear & my living room, with a bookcase in the corner. I didn't set up any lighting for ...


117

At the sort of geeky/cosplay events you describe a good solution might be to wear a T-Shirt which addresses the issue. Here's an example I found with a quick search. This should do a few things. To attendees it helps you look like "one of us". It indicates you are relatively serious about your photography, not just a random person with a point and shoot. ...


48

You're not doing anything wrong. You're just finding the limits of the camera/lens combination you are using. The EF 50mm f/1.8 (in various versions) has been known as the "plastic fantastic" for a long time. For what it can do at what it costs, it is a fantastic value. But it isn't really a fantastic 50mm prime lens when compared to many others that, ...


41

If the lighting was asymmetrical and consistent between shots, then the lighting will be flipped as well and this might easily make the shot look simply awful or so awful its funny. This may not be appropriate for their brand.


37

It's not the camera they have to take seriously: it's you. Get past the shyness. You're all fans/reenactors together, you already have an instant bonding point. Appreciate the costume work they've done. You don't have to fake anything. Just be willing to put yourself forward and ask. Show folks what you're doing and get them involved as collaborators in ...


36

Firstly, you should pose your model. There are ways to accentuate parts of the body naturally. Try posing her arms so that they squeeze the bosom. Another option then is to break all the rules of portrait photography, and instead of using a long lens (that flattens features) use a wider angle (around 24-35mm on full frame maybe) and get closer! By getting ...


36

In addition to what has been written (cropped feet), in my opinion the greed hedge in the background draws a lot of attention away from the child because it is so heavily saturated. Since the background is green, a colour far away from any skintones, one could try and desaturate the green of the whole picture a little. How far you go with this is a matter ...


31

If you read the other answers, it should be apparent that the qualities you seek such as (a) better portraits and (b) the desire to have a blurred background ... aren't really one thing, but a combination of many factors. There are some nuances but the short answer is ... portraits do not require advanced DSLRs (so entry level is fine) but... there are ...


30

There are no hard and fast rules in art. You are free to follow your heart. If flipping some of the images assists in the symmetry of the final presentation, then go for it! Few if any will recognize their image was flipped. After all, they see a flipped image when they shave or put on makeup. Yes, the dressing, shaving, and makeup image in the mirror is ...


28

Yes, this can work. I know because I've taken photos of children lit only by their birthday-cake candles and they've come out nicely. First, some general tips, without regard to your specific camera. These are probably most appropriate for a DSLR or other advanced camera which gives a lot of photographer control: Use manual exposure. The camera's automatic ...


28

Buckle in for a long answer. There are three primary advantages that "studio" flash have over hotshoe flashes. The first, and most obvious is power; even the lower-powered "serious" units (we're not talking about AC-powered lightbulb-shaped slaves) tend to start at at least the equivalent of 2 "full-sized" speedlights (of the Nikon SB-910/Canon 600EX-RT/...


28

I'm going to throw lots of ideas at a wall and make them stick. But changing cameras because it doesn't look the part is wrong. Use what is right for you. Start with an introduction, and offer to show previous work. Whenever I make first contact with a model (granted it's online), I always introduce myself and provide examples. My business cards; each one ...


27

This picture, and others similar to it, aren't pictures of the woman. These are travel snapshots, with some landmark and a woman in the same frame. There's nothing wrong with such snapshots per se. In fact, they're pretty great: they show where you were, remind you of the good times, and they're not anything like the travel postcards you could buy, even ...


27

There's more depth of field behind the focus than in front of it. So focussing on the near eye gives you the best chance of getting the whole face in focus. If you can't do it focussed on the near eye, you can't do it without changing something (position, angle, aperture). In addition, you'be got a good chance of a clear view of the near eye, making ...


26

Use the ambient light to illuminate the waterfall. Use a fairly powerful flash to illuminate your human subject. The quick duration of the flash will freeze her, especially if she remains fairly still over the long exposure. The narrow aperture you will need to properly expose with the flash will also give better depth of field so that the water fall is also ...


26

Nice work on the portrait. Some things that I notice are: The wrap around her body appears sharper than her eyes - suggesting that the focal point was set in front of her. With portraits, you want to make sure that you nail the focus on the eyes. Learn the limits of your gear - I have no experience with your particular lens but the range, 18 - 140, is ...


26

The models are obviously seeking maximum exposure. They'll assume the people with several thousands worth of camera gear on them will be selling/providing the shots to magazines, big blogs, etc. Meanwhile, you with your little point and shoot look like you're adding to your own personal photo album/portfolio. If you are providing these shots to somewhere ...


24

The leaves in the background aren't an interesting part of the photo, and they're a bit of a distraction. Blurring the background by shooting at a wider aperture (smaller f-number) would turn the background into a soft field of green and draw more attention to the child. I used a gaussian blur to simulate the decreased depth of field that a larger aperture ...


23

Usually, people are aware that they have it, but don't want it to be so pronounced. If you can use Gimp, there is a plugin called Wavelet decompose. In this site there is some information on how to use it to retouch pictures. I like that technique because you don't need to complete remove what doesn't please you, but you can minimize it so the picture ...


22

I personally have the 1.8 and my friend the 1.4. Obviously the 1.4 is much better build quality and fairly better optically, but the 1.8 is a bargain and still a good lens as long as you don't plan on throwing it around. Also more easily replaced if it breaks. Both give pleasing pictures and both will be better in low light than your current lens... but.. .....


22

A few aspects mentioned in your question will be our starting point. Please note, we are not saying each of these issues will be determining factors for every photographer. We're not saying one system is better than the other because of... a or b. Rather they are a response to the question, "...what all should a person consider?" Once considered, each of ...


21

The first and obvious problem is framing. Almost never do you want to put a small head in the middle of a large picture. There is much space to the left of the child in the picture, but it doesn't add anything (in my opinion). My first instinct would have been to use vertical format, probably capturing a little above and below the child, then deciding in ...


21

There are not "ugly" people. There is bad lighting. Well, there are several things to consider. I am just making a list, but you need to take a dive into each of them. 1. Location You can make an interesting portrait giving some context. I do not mind a scar at all, probably it is due to a hazardous environment... what if you take a photo on that ...


20

How viable are "photography templates" where a professional gives the exact settings to use in a specific set up...to allow noobs to produce high quality photos? That sounds a lot like the "scene" modes built into most cameras. The camera evaluates the scene and chooses settings using an algorithm designed to produce a nice photo. Having the camera do ...


19

To improve your portraiture, try simplifying your composition to better focus the viewer's attention on your subject. How? (No particular order): Square yourself with the background. You are closer to the background camera left than you are camera right. Use less distracting backgrounds--the brightly coloured curb running through the photograph pulls the ...


18

Tell them to come back at the next available appointment time when they have followed the instructions you gave them. Seriously. The only way to deal with this during production is to ensure it is dealt with prior to production. Make sure the client/model acknowledges at least a day in advance that they understand the need to wear loose fitting, non-binding ...


17

"Preamble" - "Candid" versus "permission granted" photos: You specifically ask about asking permission, so that's what I've mainly concentrated on below. As others note and as you will be aware, photos taken when the subject is aware of the photographer are usually quite different from casual / candid / spontaneous shots. I take both. If I see someone who ...


17

Lighting Luckily you don't need to drag round a full set of Profotos and car batteries to get this look, natural light is all you need. Shoot late in the day when the sun is low in the sky. This gives you a softer light, with natural fill, warmer colours and makes it easier to blow out (overexpose) the background and/or provide lots of highlights for great ...


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