Tips on a First Portrait Photo Shoot Outdoors

Save

Shooting outdoor portraits is similar to shooting indoor portraits, with a few differences. You will learn how lighting changes and reacts with your photos and your subject. It is important to learn how to eliminate unflattering photos and poses and create a photo where the person is the focus, not the background. Be open to moving around, playing with composition and poses and learning about your equipment to take great outdoor portraits.

Lighting

  • Shoot outdoor portraits when the sun is low in the sky in early morning or late afternoon or evening or when it is obscured by shade or clouds. Clouds make colors more enriched and create appealing shadows in the background. Watch for shading over your subject and adjust lighting by using a reflector or positioning the person near something white or reflective to change how the light plays on your subject. Use reflection to mimic studio light if you have to shoot in direct sunlight. Set your shutter speed to f16 if you are shooting on a sunny day. Set your shutter to f8 on cloudy days. Use your flash.

Composition and Background

  • Select a background that will not distract from the person in your photo. If you have a background, add at least two meters between the person and the background so you can blur the background, creating less distraction. Fill the frame with the person you are photographing. Focus your photo on the subject's eyes and shoot at eye level, even if that means bending down or sitting on the ground to get the shot. Watch for hues of green on your subject if you are in an area with a lot of leaves and grass. Unwanted color and background distractions can be eliminated and adjusted in the editing stage. Do not shoot power lines or signs in portraits.

Pose

  • Do not face your subject toward the sun. Shoot your photos with the sun behind your subject so the light adds depth. Do not shoot your portrait head on, where the person's toes and shoulders both face you. Add interest and create a flattering shot by shooting at an angle. Watch for uncomfortable, unnatural poses. Create natural poses and make adjustments to the pose while you are looking through your camera to obtain the most flattering shot. Avoid shooting from behind your subject unless you are photographing babies or toddlers.

Equipment and Modes

  • Never shoot portraits with a lens less than 50 mm; lenses that are 100mm will prevent feature distortion. Set the camera to aperture priority mode and set the white balance and ISO based on the lighting and conditions outside. Select the widest aperture available with your lens so you have a shallow depth of field and less distraction in the photo. Use RAW files so they are easy to edit later. Use a tripod to get a steady, even shot. Add a skylight filter or UV filter to protect your lens and reduce glare while letting the most light through the lens. Bring a second battery and memory stick.

References

  • Photo Credit Stockbyte/Stockbyte/Getty Images
Promoted By Zergnet

Comments

Resources

You May Also Like

  • How to Strike a Pose for a Photo Shoot

    A photographer's lens can capture every essence of its subject. A model has a task to convey emotions that a photographer would...

  • How to Shoot Beautiful Outdoor Portraits

    How to Shoot Beautiful Outdoor Portraits. As digital photography becomes more available and affordable, serious photography opportunities are opening to previously casual...

  • Toddler Boy Photo Shoot Poses & Ideas

    Toddlers are little bundles of energy, always on-the-go, even during a portrait session. If your little one has a photo shoot scheduled,...

  • Couple Photo Shoot Ideas

    Whether you are shooting photos for an engagement announcement or simply to capture a couple's love on film for no particular occasion,...

  • Outdoor Group Portrait Posing

    When posing a group outdoors for a portrait, place the people in a way that incorporates them with the natural elements of...

  • Outdoor Photography & Location

    Location photography puts unique demands on the product photographer. Learn how to shoot photographs on location outdoors from a professional photographer in...

  • What to Wear to a Photo Shoot

    Getting your picture taken is an exciting event whether you're doing it alone or with your family. However, there is nothing worse...

  • Good Poses for a Beach Photo Shoot

    With a beach photo shoot, it is important to consider the person or people posing in the photos as well as the...

Related Searches

Check It Out

12 Tiki Essentials to Turn Your Bar Cart Into a Tropical Paradise

M
Is DIY in your DNA? Become part of our maker community.
Submit Your Work!