Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Tips for Your Portrait Photo Shoot

A couple of years ago, I wrote some tips on engagement shoots specifically. With much more experience under my belt and a couple more years having passed, I thought I would revisit the topic. This time, you can consider this as relevant for all types of portrait photo shoots.

#1 (this is #1 for a reason!): When thinking of your location, your clothes, hair, shoes and what types of poses you might want to do, keep this in mind: BE COMFORTABLE! Don't go anywhere, or wear or do anything that makes you feel awkward. Photographer's pose suggestion feel a bit forced? Let them know and adjust to be more comfortable and relaxed. Trust me, if you aren't feelin' it, it will show in the photos.

#2: There are 5 things I suggest you consider when choosing what to wear:

Comfort - If you'll be climbing around on rocks or walking on the beach, flip-flops would likely be a better idea than stilettos. Long sleeves and/or layers on a warm day could make you sweaty and you could freeze if it's cool out without a sweater!

Location - As aforementioned, be sure you're comfortable. Also remember where you're going and dress for the place. A cocktail dress and suit isn't necessarily appropriate for urban or beach photos (though, at the same time, that contrast could also provide for some interesting photos!)

Color: Deep shades of colors ("jewel tones"), like magenta, ruby (deep red), emerald (deep green), sapphire (deep blue), and amethyst (purple) all generally work out well in just about any situation. Orange and yellows can also be good for brunet(te)s and those with darker complexions. That doesn't mean you can't wear other colors, so don't be afraid to throw whatever colors you'd like into it. Try to stay away from busy patterns. Ultimately, wear the color(s) that you think complement you best.

What Your "Portrait Partner(s)" is/are Wearing - Matching exactly isn't really suggested or recommended unless you're going for a coordinated look (I'm sure everyone has seen the photos of families wearing all white shirts with jeans :) ), but planning your outfit(s) to coordinate well definitely is. Keep styles in mind (everyone casual, everyone formal, etc.) is a good idea, as is wearing colors that go well together or wearing different shades of the same color.

Looking Like Yourself
 - Don't feel that you have to "dress up" to look great in your photos!

#3: (This is mostly for you, ladies) Don't force anyone to wear anything they really don't want to wear. You may not feel that your husband's choice of shorts if a good one, or you may feel that your wife needs to wear a dress to look nicer... Or you may think your child's choice is a bit odd. But, suggestions aside, it really is often best to let them decide. (Obviously, if it's a very young child, they may want something ESPECIALLY strange, not excluding running around in their birthday suit, haha. Within reason, it could still be the best idea to give them SOME choice in the matter. Perhaps give them a few outfit choices and see what they'd like best?)

#4: Look around at photos online or in magazines and send any you'd like to try to recreate to your photographer ahead of time (or bring them with you to your session). There are no guarantees that the situation will be perfect to capture them, but there's no harm in trying! Besides that, it can give your photographer a better idea of what you'd like.

#5: Do not be afraid to let your personality shine through! Many peoples' favorite shots are exactly those "silly" or sweet captures from when they weren't thinking about the camera aimed at them. Laugh, smile, tease... Bring things with you that have some meaning (Sports fan? Bring a ball, bat, racket, or hat for your favorite team! Pregnant? Bring ultrasound photos, baby shoes, or a favorite plush animal!). Just have fun with YOUR photo shoot! :)

No comments:

Post a Comment